February 01, 2008


You all requested a food post, so here it is!

We have "Eastern" and "Western" food here.
And we also have food that is neither Eastern nor Western, but is eaten in an Eastern or Western fashion.

Take shrimp for instance.

In the US, the heads are removed, the shells peeled and they are fried, butterflied, sauteed, or served cold as in a shrimp cocktail, or peel-n-eat shrimp (the only time the 'consumer' has to mess with the shell...but still, the head is removed).

Here shrimp is the same.
Well, it's the same animal.
But this is how we usually eat it...

Another common food eaten in an Eastern manner is fish.
And here you eat the whole thing, head included.
This is a grilled salmon head.
Anthony's right thumb is messy because he was digging the meat out of the head just before we took the picture. Yes, there is meat in fish heads...and it tastes just like the rest of the fish.
Now here is an example of very "Eastern" food.
The ingredients, the sauces, the plate, and the way it's eaten are all from the "East."
What you see here is "Banana Leaf."Clearly you can see the plates are made of banana leaves.
Nice for the clean-up crew huh?
The nice Indian men will dump a huge thing of white rice on the middle of the leaf.
Then, they scoop out several kinds of lentils, vegetables, curries, and dahl.
Then you mix all of the above together and eat it with your right hand.
When you're done, you fold the banana leaf toward you (as a sign that it was delicious).
If you eat it at a funeral, fold it away from you as a sign that "nothing" tastes good at the moment because of your sorrow.
Banana leaf is messy, but oh-so-good.
Afterwards, you will walk away with yellow fingernails on your right hand because cumin is used in many curries and dahls.

Prepared food is one thing, but there are some foods that God just simply chose to grow in the East and not the West.
Like this here Dragon Fruit.
That's right DRAGON Fruit.
The outside of the fruit is on the left and the inside is on the right.
This one is cut in half. Isn't it such a neat fruit?
(you can see a bowl of it in the fish-head picture)
I mean, of COURSE it's named Dragon fruit. It looks like some kind of fake looking fruit that they would have invented for a scene in Star Trek to try and look alien-ish.
There are two kinds that we've seen here. One has white flesh on the inside and the other has pink. But they're all pink on the outside, and we have no clue how to tell the difference. It basically has the consistency of a kiwi fruit and tastes almost like one, but a little less tangy.

And then there's Western Food.
Prepared a Western way.
Eaten in a Western manner.
Here's a gargantuan burger from Carl's Jr.
(aka "Hardee's" for all our East Coast friends. Recognize the star? See! You may have even learned something about your own food you didn't know. Hardee's and Carl's Jr are the same!)
There are other foods here that are worth mentioning, so we'll keep our eyes peeled for future food posts.


SouthAsiaRocks said...

Wow - impressive peeling :) Fun video! mmmm... western food :) haha! Makes me want a Milkshake from Burger King in t-land :) (milkshakes here consist of powder in milk and shaken up) :) haha! Anyway, fun post! :) Great pics! :)

Steve Spinks said...

Incredible! Your posts are so fascinating. And the production values of your videos are really getting quite good! We enjoy them all. Keep up the good work.

C-Love said...

Oh my gosh! After a day of fasting, a Hardee's burger just about made me pass out.

I'm pretty sure the envy, hatred, etc. that I felt just then totally negated any good that the rest of my day accomplished.

In the end, I still love you guys.

marylou said...

good job with the shrimp...reminds me of the shrimp i had when we went to langkawi...best sweet and sour shrimp EVER! next, dragon fruit!!!!

The Agarwals said...

What a fun post! Collin loves fruit- he has nicknamed himself "Fruit Boy" ( I know, I know) we're working on moving him more towards "Fan of Fruit" but nonetheless, I bet he would love that dragon fruit! Amazing! My messy eater Griff (recall yogurt and sour cream posts) would probably enjoy the style of banana leaf eating! No silverware, that's right up his ally!
Whew! All those pics- I think I need a snack!

Cara said...

That's what I like to call MAD SKILLZ on eating shrimp with one hand! And more props for getting all the meat out of the tail...can't let that shrimpy goodness go to waste!
Lovin these posts...so informative. You guys should have your own show on PBS. Now THERE'S an idea!

Elizabeth said...

Peelin' and eatin' one handed is pretty stinkin' amazin'... so glad you shared in a video!

One question - are you eating on a "real" plate at a mall food court?