Posts Tagged ‘Tony Chachere’

Honouring, that’s a short title. It’s a simple process, too.

My friend, Taewon, lost his first friend this summer. Tae is a warm, friendly guy, I liked him the moment we met. He’s a young man who has made some serious decisions about his life, forging forward, taking risks, putting himself  “out there”. For a sensitive person, for an immigrant, for a person with mobility challenges, I admire his attitude all the more. new-handicap-sign_sq-b776123d4caffce16afc752c82caf50c6309eb02-s3-c85

The friend who died was especially close to Taewon, as I understand, because this was the first person to really see Taewon as a regular guy; he didn’t notice disability. He looked him in the eye, talked to him like he talked to everyone, included him in everything. And being regular, being just one of the gang is really the aspiration of almost everyone, with or without a disability.  Losing this someone who epitomized the word “friend” was seemingly too much to bear.

As the weeks went on and the grieving continued, I told Taewon about my way of handling those who have passed on in my life, and they are myriad. I honour them.

I honour them by embedding their names in my passwords, some of them are thought of several times a day as I type and retype their names. It’s private, it’s personal, it’s tiny… but a tribute nonetheless. Each person (and DOG) also has a specific memory or association. For example, in the BLOGPOST previous to this one, my recipe for RICE SALAD has a tribute to Gevin who first sent me Tony Chachere’s Creole Seasoning. I use it a lot. I buy it for others and give it as a gift. I tell people the “Story of Gevin” and how he came to mail me a box of goodies from Louisiana. I think of Gev when I cook. His memory is wholly embedded in my kitchen.  Larry is Single Malt Scotch. Mark is Chess….on and on it goes.

I explained this to Tae. Despite his wounded state, his comprehension was immediate. He smiled through misty eyes. “Beer,” he said. “I will remember him every time I have a beer because we drank beer together at SFU.”

“Perfect,” said I.

As the weeks passed, he still mentioned his friend a few times during our conversations. The panic was gone. He told me about the planned memorial, but gradually the focus of the conversations shifted away from his loss. Honour beer seems to be working.

I teased Tae by telling him I would honour him with a BLOGPOST. “I’m not dead yet!” He flashed me the grin that everyone is always pleased to see on the murderball court….but that’s another story.

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I brought this rice salad down to Mossom Creek Hatchery for the hungry volunteers to eatsaladuseit last week. Patty and her kids, Miranda and Griff, have been volunteering at Mossom Creek Hatchery for many, many years. Miranda’s initial film inspiration came from her work at Mossom so I was happy to provide a dish that appealed to her vegetarian palate. I actually decided to make the Rice Salad as an alternative to the Quinoa Salad that has become my standard for potluck gatherings.

Many years ago my friend, Lynn Hardy, made a rice salad that was delicious and economical. Since then, I think this version emerged as a fusion of a memory of Lynn’s delicious salad, a tribute to my friend Gevin who introduced me to Tony Chachere’s Creole Seasoning, and of course all the Korean ingredients in my kitchen.

Voilà.

Cook:

2 CUPS Korean RICE (sometimes called YELLOW or SWEET RICE)salad4ingred

In 3 CUPS unsalted WATER (I use a rice cooker)

Let cool in large glass bowl

Combine cooled rice with:

2 bunches chopped green onions (finely chopped)

1 ½ or 1 very large long English Cucumber chopped bite size

1/4 cup fresh basil (chopped fine) we use kitchen shears

1 drained can chick peas or grated cheddar cheese (optional – for protein)

1/3 cup olive oil oil

1/4 cup brown rice vinegar heated w. 1 T. sugar until dissolved (or use sushi vinegar )

1 T sesame oil

(optional: chopped red/yellow peppers, grape tomatoes – be creative)

Tony Chachere’s Creole Seasoning and pepper to taste

MIX gently

Sprinkle with smoked paprika & garnish with basil leaves as shown

Serve promptly

Store tightly covered and eat soon after preparation. This rice, like sticky rice, dries out quickly. To serve next day add a little more oil and vinegar and stir well.