Podcasts Worth A Listen

I’ve been listening to podcasts since around 2001, when I’d board a shuttle on my college commute, threading my iPod earphones under a down jacket so the wire wouldn’t freeze in the Minnesota winter and crackle the sound. Here’s my latest list of regulars on my Stitcher app.

food-related . curious about the world . storytelling & creativity . news

Food-Related Podcasts

Stories on food and its origins and how it connects us, plus a strong thread of hearing the less-told stories of how minority groups or unexpected narratives contributed to mainstream food culture.

Food Without Borders: Food writer Sari Kamin speaks with guests on how food helps connect them to their past, ease potential conflict across cultures and strengthen the future. She also explores the immigrant experience in the U.S. today.

Gastropod: food with a side of science. Heard their oyster episode just as I was putting finishing touches on my post about going to Taylor Shellfish on a road trip. This is current go-to podcast each week, as of Spring 2018.

Gravy: the Southern Foodways Alliance has been putting out some really exciting stories over there, exploring stories and histories of food from different cultures living in the United States that traditionally haven’t had a loud voice in the mainstream.

Heritage Radio Network: the only online food station, and a powerhouse of food-related segments.

Racist Sandwich: lives in the intersection between food, race, gender and class, and shares some very frank perspectives.

The Sporkful: funny, down to earth. “The Sporkful isn’t for foodies, it’s for eaters.”

On the Radar

Podcasts not always in my regular rotation but worth considering.

The Dave Chang Show: multimedia mogul, foodways vanguard, and student of life David Chang hosts a series of guests to talk about their inspirations, failures, successes, fame, and identities. Between watching Ugly Delicious and restaurant news, a person only has so many hours in a day to spend hearing about all the great things caused by David Chang, which is the only reason this doesn’t always make my regular rotation in 2018. Bonus points: this show is part of The Ringer family from my favorite voice in the sports-related podcast realm. Full disclosure: K calls Dave Chang my cultural appropriation outrage soul mate, ha.

Food for Thought: stories related to food in Seattle, under the NPR umbrella.

Special Sauce: comes from the Serious Eats professionals, hosted by Ed Levine.

Do you have a favorite food-related podcast that’s not listed here?

Post in the comments and share, or tweet me @FoodtheWongWay.

Other Podcasts in Rotation

Curious about the world, looking for kindness, good stories, PNW news and inspiring life paths.

Curious About the World

99% Invisible: stories for those curious about the world!

Awesome Etiquette Podcast: I am a long-time fan of Lizzie Post and Dan Post Senning’s etiquette podcast, which offers thoughtful, friendly advice on how to be kinder to people. Yep, they are descendants of the etiquette authority, Emily Post. I heartily agree with the sentiments on the Emily Post Institute, “being considerate, respectful, and honest is more important than knowing which fork to use. Whether it’s a handshake or a fist bump, it’s the underlying sincerity and good intentions of the action that matter most.”

Freakonomics: Steve Levitt and Stephen Dubner, co-authors of the book of same name, “explore the riddles of everyday life and the weird wrinkles of human nature”. This podcast regularly scratches my curious behavioral economics itch in life.

Hidden Brain: a conversation about life’s unseen patterns.

Lexicon Valley (Slate): John McWhorter explores the history and roots of different language questions.

Planet Money: like the title of this blog, the name of this podcast may seem misleadingly narrow, it touches on so many more aspects of our lives, and features great in-depth stories.

Storytelling & Creativity

Binge Mode (from The Ringer): I actually don’t have this on my Stitcher list, but Mallory Rubin and Jason Concepcion’s voices make it into my daily life via my partner’s podcast list through their dialogue based on binge watching various TV show series of the day. Other stories from The Ringer that I would otherwise not expect to care about seem to have one extra level of quality and compelling storytelling when Bill Simmons is involved..

Levar Burton Reads: Levar Burton reads to us! OMG, Reading Rainbow Nostalgia meets Star Trek #NextGeneration fandom meets new re-introductions to fiction from a fellow sci-fi fan. A recent read offered up an amazing listen of a short story by Octavia Butler, an amazingly insightful author (and one of the few racial minorities widely published in the mainstream sci fi genre a few decades ago). We should count ourselves lucky Mr. Burton is gracing us with his continued voice in the pool of narrative storytelling in this day and age.

The Moth Radio Hour: personal storytelling told from Moth events around the world that pulls at your heartstrings. I have actually been a paying donor of this podcast when it fit in my budget.

The Unmistakeable Creative: interviews with entrepreneurial people sharing their successes, failures, and inspiring stories.

News

Marketplace Morning Report: this is my perfunctory morning commute listen.

The Record (KUOW): local conversations from Puget Sound stories (KUOW is also 94.9 FM).

Seattleland: an excellent podcast out in 2018 of local PNW stories, backed by Seattle Weekly. I love how this format allows you to spend a little more time and care for the people at the center of the stories, even while they touch on very current concerns of the day.

Upcoming Food-Related Events

Living Breath Symposium 2017 - Books for further learning!

Following on the review of the First Food Tank Summit in Seattle, some upcoming food-related events, a few with social justice bents.

Race, Economies, Workers & Borders

April 3, 6-8pm at Bellingham Unitarian Fellowship – Sanctuary, a Community to Community Development & Northwest Washington Central Labor Council event.

Slow Food Regional Conference

April 14 & 15 in Carnation, WA

The 2018 Living Breath Indigenous Foods and Ecological Knowledge Symposium

May 4 & 5 in Seattle, WA (on the UW campus, on the grounds of the Coast Salish Peoples)

Menus of Change Annual Leadership Summit

 June 19-21, in Hyde Park, New York

Got some intel on more?

Write me! Contact details after the ‘read more’ link.
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A Review: Food Tank’s First Summit
in the PNW

Food Tank Summit in Seattle, 2018

2018 Food Tank’s First Summit
in the Pacific Northwest: Growing Food Policy

Have you ever attended a conference and walked away super inspired, then wondered a week later if anything stuck?

I wasn’t sure what to expect of Food Tank’s first summit held in the Pacific Northwest. In the end, it was a net positive. Having taken time to mull things over, there are even some unexpected learnings which will stick with me and help me grow going forward. Writing this review actually helped me process some of it, so thanks, Dear Reader!* I’m hoping the food-interested folks reading this, and the others who participated will help keep this learning going.

To skip the narrative storytelling portion, skip to the actual review part.
 
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Gluten-Free Pot Sticker Wrappers

Gluten-free pot sticker wrappers: the cutting phase
What’s more Chinese than wheat-filled porky pot stickers?
Being a good host who makes all your guests feel welcome, that’s what.
In 1980s Minnesota, growing up a first generation American-born child of Chinese immigrants, Asian produce and processed goods were not readily available at the grocery stores on University Ave in Saint Paul. For special occasions, my parents would host parties and invite all our family friends over to help fold dumplings. They’d mix the pork filling and procure wrappers and get everyone –ethnic Chinese or not– involved in trying their hand at wrapping the dumplings.  I still remember one time our friend Javed found the filling so fragrant (it’s the toasted sesame oil in the pork) he asked if he could eat it raw. Was it that he grew up partly in Germany? Not sure, but sesame oil sure does make things smell good. Then my Mama would boil and/or fry round after round to fuel yet more dumpling wrapping. Some times my Baba would buy wrappers, other times I remember him mixing the flour and water and letting is rise, then rolling it out (by hand or by pasta roller), to be cut by the rim of an aluminum green bean can.
In light of this childhood memory, I was excited when K conceded to hosting a few friends over for a pot sticker* party for lunar new year with only a week’s notice.
New challenge: make gluten-free wrappers for my friend Jillian, so she could join in the fun!

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Travel Pro-tip: How to Pack Beer to Fly Home in One Piece

How to pack beer in your check-in luggage home.

“How do you pack beer home when you fly?”

-My old friend Kyle (readers may know him as the one who married an Iowan named Susannah*)

This was the nudge to finally draft this post I’ve had in mind. I hope those of you over 21 find it handy as we head into holiday travel this year. Kris and I like to bring a little craft beer back from travel as a souvenir to enjoy with friends. We’ve logged, him especially, a lot of airline miles with beer in luggage and gotten some routines down to accommodate.
[insert 10/22 photo of luggage, brighten and crop, draw arrow, caption: you can see I went with multiples of optional step 4]

The Beer-Packing Formula Continue Reading

Pro-tip Tuesday:
Unintended Extra Groceries + Tote Hack

Do you ever go grocery shopping and discover that you’re picking up 150% more than you intended to buy, that you are really hungry, and now you’re trying to figure out how to bike or walk it all home?

I recently picked up a new trick for those reusable sacs (usually cloth or polyester of some sort) with sizable handle-loops. It keeps me covered when I am carrying way more than any sane, less-ambitious urban nomad would carry. Continue Reading

Need an Easy Dinner Next Monday?
Food-related blog news.

Panko-Crusted Chicken with Zesty Lemon-Garlic Pasta, Salad

Dear Reader,
I am sharing a bit of exciting news — as of today, my good friend Sarah Yee​ and I are starting a little food business! As you all know, we both love to cook. Now, we’ll be channeling this passion and skills into cooking for our community through Josephine.

What’s Josephine?
Josephine is an awesome community where approved cooks sell their home cooked meals to friends and neighbors. You order online, pick up the food from my kitchen and take it home to enjoy! Each meal, Sarah and I will be taking turns leading, all while we get to cook together and learn from each other’s recipes. Continue Reading

Driving the East Iceland Fjords

Driving the East Fjords of Iceland (Photo: Kristoffer Jonson, October 2017).

Previous: Jokulsarlon Short Video

AirBnb in Holmur

On Wednesday morning, a good breakfast spread included with our stay gave us a peek at the restaurant space at the AirBnB in Holmur (photo after the jump). It was easy to imagine it as a lively popular affair in the Summer. This was perhaps the best hosted breakfast bar of our trip! Darn tasty. I took a few extra moments to gaze out the window to the bucolic paradise of ducks and geese chillin’ in the brush, in front of the distant Vatnajökull glacier. I was a little sad to miss communing with the farm goats, as getting out the door and on the road took priority. This was to be one of the longer stretches of our drive around Iceland.

Also in This Post

Holmur AirBnb / Thermal Pool Shenanigans / Hofn / Driving the East FjordsSeyðisfjöurðor

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Pure Icelandic Waters: Solid State – Jökulsárlón

Reynisdrangar, Iceland

Previous: Pure Icelandic Waters – Liquid State

Entertainingly, my travelling companion’s mood lightened with the cold thermal pool debacle, and mine darkened with the rain. Plus wind. I don’t recall what else went on in my mind to dampen things and I don’t care to recall more. May have also been influenced by a morose audiobook.

Reynisdrangar, Iceland
Reynisdrangar, Iceland (Photo: Yiling Wong) Fun fact: also the site of some Game of Thrones scenes.

Reynisdrangar

The distant rock of the towering formations out past the deadly waves on the beach could easily fit the Icelandic legend telling of huge trolls turned to stone at dawn, caught while dragging some ships out (or in?) long ago.

The basalt column formations (although busy with tourists) transported us to the moment of torrential, deadly-hot lava meeting the equally stormy sea, frozen in time forever, in hexagonal rock columns once the sea receded.[10] Continue Reading

Tuesday: Pure Icelandic Waters
Liquid State

Svellelaug hiking path, Food the Wong Way, Oct 2017

Water Water, Everywhere

Woke up amazed to find myself in the dreamland of Iceland, excited to start the day. Kris was acting grumpy-pantsed, unclear why…

We had a chance to catch breakfast from our host Snæbjörn in the flesh. I found our host accommodating but ambivalent about his home. He seemed not to like his area, but maybe because his girlfriend was in Bristol, and he’d been woken at 2AM by a drunk neighbor-friend last night. When asked if Icelanders liked to party (I’d heard they had a reputation for it), he retorted no, and that visitors seemed much more prone to drinking extra. Breakfast was toast, jams, salami, cheese, nutella, butter, coffee, and home-cooked heart-shaped waffles. We sat across from some young honeymooners from Korea. The wife was so delighted when I took a photo for the two of them, lol. Later we were also offered some caviar out of a metal tube like toothpaste. Fancy.

I’d heard of a neighborhood thermal pool in the hills nearby and we headed over. Grumpy K was not happy with the pot-holed dirt road, lest we get stuck – and even less impressed with the van of visitors when it pulled in next to us.

En route by foot to Seljavallalaug, with a hop in my step toward our first thermal pool!
En route by foot to Seljavallalaug, with a hop in my step toward our first thermal pool! If you have ever taken a Lynda tutorial on Adobe products, this scenery may feel familiar..

Previous: Glymur Falls Dayhike

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