When I was growing up in a remote little country town in the desert, my Ma, being the only Asian housewife within a 500km radius, used to run chinese cooking classes at the local TAFE. For some reason, she occasionally dragged me along with her and I would follow, begrudgingly, with my toys in tow and not pay attention to anything that was going on. All I remember was her bellowing Filipino voice, yelling over the enthusiastic wannabe Chinese chefs in the Home Ec. centre at Leigh Creek Area School. The room, being so massive and open, made her voice seem giant-like which was pretty funny coming from a teeny tiny little asian woman like her. I think she dragged me with her so she could teach me to appreciate food from an early age.
Did I mention the word ‘begrudgingly?’ Her little ploy didn’t work so years later, when she started the one and only chinese catering business in town, and possibly the only chinese catering business between Darwin and Adelaide, she would make me help her out. I would make it so obvious that I couldn’t be assed helping her, she’d scream at me and tell me to go away.
She finally got her own when she was about to boot me out of home when I was 11. Alright, she wasn’t booting me out of home, she was sending me to boarding school…but before I left, she made me cook dinner for her and Confoocious – that’s my Daddy, and fyi, ‘Confoocious’ isn’t his real name – for a week. Ma would sit there, judging my food, Dad would just eat in silence, and even though I passed with flying colours – at least, that’s what they told me at the time – I look back at that and think two things: 1) I’m pretty sure the food tasted like crap and 2) why didn’t they make my brother and sister cook for them before they got booted out? Damn siblings.
Anyway, since then, I’ve loved food and especially loved cooking for other people. It must be a Filipino thing…damn Filipinos…though I’d never be a chef (CBFd), I think I’ve had more hits than misses in the kitchen…at least, that’s what everyone tells me.
So on this blog are the recipes my mates keep bugging me for, however, I don’t expect any of them to cook it for me, they’d probably just say ‘Nah, you do it…’ Damn mates…