If one does have to work over a holiday weekend, this is not a bad way to do it: Eating and, well, talking about eating.
On Labor Day, at the Asian Feastival in Queens, I had the privilege of spending a lovely hour on a panel with New York chef and restaurateur Andy Yang (of Rhong-Tiam Express, a tiny Thai takeout place that he opened after closing his one Michelin-star restaurant Rhong-Tiam in January) and Kian Lam Kho, a private chef and caterer who blogs about Chinese home cooking at Red Cook. The food festival, which included tasting booths and cooking demonstrations by experts such as the effervescent blogger Maangchi, was designed to showcase Asian food from all regions.
Outside our cozy conference room, the booths and cooking displays meandered through Taiwan, Korea, China, the Philippines. Inside, however, our panel had a specific angle: Deconstructing Southeast Asian Flavors.
While I had felt that I had already learned a lot in the year I spent traveling to my native Singapore to learn to cook for my upcoming memoir, A Tiger In The Kitchen, I ended up picking up a few handy tips from our lively discussion …