Got my flu shot last week, and gave myself a little reward for bravery in the face of that harrowing medical ordeal by having lunch at Mai Thai on the way home.
A Brief Aside
Tyler Cowen, author and proprietor of the indispensable Tyler Cowen’s Ethnic Dining Guide, made one of those observations that seems obvious in retrospect, but hadn’t occurred to me until I read it: “All food is ethnic food”.
Well of course it is.
“Ethnic food” has become the term commonly used to identify food from Asia, Africa, and Central and South America, but my beloved soupe à l’oignon and confit de canard are just as much “ethnic foods” as my beloved phở and bánh mì.
And my worldview became a tiny bit broader.
I started my meal with some nice crispy fried wonton stuffed with curry, minced chicken, potatoes, and onions, served with a plum dipping sauce.
For the main, I had boneless chicken breast sauteed with fresh ginger in a light yellow curry on a bed of steamed spinach topped with peanut sauce, with a side of jasmine rice.
Visitors to the US from Europe and Asia frequently comment on the relatively huge portion size in American restaurants. (I remember once sitting near a German lady who corrected her server for bringing her the wrong order. “I ordered a small salad”, she said. “That is a small salad”, he replied.)
I was reminded of this when I noticed that during the hour I spent ar Mai Thai, everyone who left the restaurant—including me—was carrying a “doggy bag”.
A very good meal. Correction: Two very good meals.