When Another Cook, er Comic Book Won’t Do; Zao Dao’s Cuisine Chinoise Brings Worlds Together

Plenty of Chinese cooking philosophy can be learned in the release of Zao Dao’s comic anthology Cuisine Chinoise: 5 Tales of Life and Food. Dark Horse Comics is publishing the translated edition and it is set for release June 2020.

In what’s key to this culture’s style of cuisine is in different ingredients gel together. It’s not just about the tastes, but also in how it brings people together. It’s said to bring different people of conflicting ideologies together. Just look at Voltron: Legendary Defender. In the finale. Hunk (the Yellow Paladin) believes he can bring feuding empires together at the dinner table. Peace can be made one meal at a time. Mending old wounds can be tough, and when some food has healing properties, perhaps all that’s needed is a careful time to taste that fine red wine.

Not only are the principles of yin and yang involved to bring balance, there’s other facts to be found that nearly all Chinese master chefs share. Key to bringing this balance to the force are also the five flavours–Sour (酸 suān); Sweetness (甜 tián or 甘 gān); Spice (辛 xīn); Bitter (苦 kǔ) and Salt (咸 xián). These specific natures are reflected for those who read Dao’s work when it was originally published in France. Editions Mosquito handled this release and those impatient can hunt Abebooks.com for a copy.

The overlap between food, family, and culture are seamlessly highlighted in this special “cook book.” From insects looking for a meal to a man whose passion for cooking is the only hope of maintaining a family legacy, these wonderfully illustrated stories explore the rich and humorous world within while showcasing the beautiful relationship between Chinese culture and food.

Cuisine Chinoise: 5 Tales of Life and Food has two release dates. Some may consider comic shops are getting the appetizer on June 10, 2020 and hopefully a main course (book signing perhaps?) at bookstores June 23, 2020. The 96-page paperback graphic novel anthology is available for pre-order through Amazon and at your local comic shop for $19.99.

[Seattle, WA] Katsu on a Feeling

Katsu Burger
Multiple Locations
Seattle, Washington

Hours: 11:00 am to 10:00pm

Hamburger patties can flame grilled, air-cooked or microwaved (for those in a rush). Frying it in a vat of oil is not altogether strange. That’s what make certain innovations interesting. Katsu Burger is a Seattle-based chain offering deep fried hamburgers. It’s supposed to be one of the latest things coming out of Japan, but one look online shows they are lightyears ahead with other innovations–like adding lotus root, fried noodles or using rice-based buns to a classic fast food dish.

The idea using fried bread is not above me. The thought of a protein patty sandwiched in between Indigenous style bannock is going to have me experimenting.

In what makes a Katsu katsu is with breading the meat before getting deep fried. With pork or chicken, the meat is pounded until it’s suitably flat. Though with ground meat, that’d be tough to do. Slabs of beef can be buffeted with honey to have a shine, and it’d certainly change the flavour profile.

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A Touch of Home at Red Brick Cafe in Sidney, BC

Red Brick Cafe
2423 Beacon Ave #106
Sidney, BC

Phone: (250) 655-1822
Hours: 6:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

When I’m in a rush to the BC Ferries Swartz Bay terminus to my next great adventure (which I’ve been doing a lot more of lately), not a lot of options for a quick stop for a meal exists. When trying to make the first ferry of the day, it’s nearly impossible to grab a warm breakfast. I could pay more and charge into the Pacific Buffet lounge on the boat–which is what I often do–but I was with friends this day and they were on a tighter budget than I was for what to grab to eat.

A taste of home-made and no thrills can found in the early mornings in Sidney, BC. That was the consensus with the pals I was with. We enjoyed the morning sea breeze, chatted about our plans for the geek fest we were headed to while sipping fancy coffees–varying from lattes to expressos to basic (for me, anyway).

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[Seattle, WA] Come Sail Away with me at Sushi Kashiba

Sushi Kashiba
86 Pine St #1
Seattle, WA

Phone: (206) 441-8844
Hours: 11:30 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
5:00 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.

During the busy holiday weekends in Seattle, my advise is to make reservations if you want to insure getting a seat to dine at Sushi Kashiba. This port city is known for many things, and despite what anyone says about Pike Place Market, it’s home to many secret delights. I’ve known about this particular dining establishment for a while and keep on getting sidetracked when I discover something new. Even though I had a special fund just to dine here, it can get spent fast on other delights.

When considering Chef Kashiba trained under Jiro, a sushi master, I knew I’d be in for a treat.

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Give Me a Home with the 10 Acres Bistro

10 Acres Bistro
811 Courtney St
Victoria, BC

Phone: (250) 220-8008
Hours: 11a.m.–11p.m.

Menu: 10acres.ca

I feel home at the range here, at 10 Acres Bistro. Part of their menu change on a seasonal basis, and it makes visiting every once in a while different. When they source straight from the farm, some of what’s offered for meals are on a limited basis. And they arrive at the table all dressed up with only one place to go–my stomach! I find the Fall season offers a lot more delectable delights than the late Winter, but it all depends.

One time I went here was for one of the Victoria Film Festival‘s launch party for their guide. That was years ago and was held at the other side of the venue. That is, including the bar section and The Oyster Bar, I heard it’s all run under the same banner known as The Commons. Another time was for a chance to meet Linda Blair, of The Exorcist fame. I enjoy how different spaces in this venue can be used for any occasion. Normally, it’s a date place; it’s a quiet and cozy environment.

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[Seattle, WA] Kedai Makan is Stealing my Heart

Kedai Makan
1802 Bellevue Ave
Seattle, WA

Phone:
Hours: Weds-Sun 5pm to 11pm

Tyger Tyger, burning bright,
In the forests of the night;
What immortal hand or eye,
Where’s a place in Seattle to dine?

The answer: Capital Hill at Kedai Makan. On an evening exploration of all points east of the Washington State Convention Center, the search for something new to try was worth it! Between all the conventions I come to this city for and my carnivorous desires for this particular food scene, there’s no denying it’s easy to find something new each trip.

This operation have spicy frog legs and catfish! Though considered a mostly Southern American dish, I was torn in what to order. The Malay style roasted peanuts was practically a meal in itself and had enough heat to get my feet smoking. It’s mixed with anchovy oil, lime and roasted chili. It was a snack to share, than anything else, and I saved it for my cooler noodle dish. It needed to be hotter than hell. It looked so good, and by the time I left the building, I was feeling very well done.

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