National SRMK18N Rice Cooker Pan


My 17-year-old National SRMK18N rice cooker still works. I had already replaced the inner pan twice. Unfortunately, there will not be a third time since the replacement pan is no longer available. I was a bit devastated by this unplanned obsolescence. Panasonic still sells replacement parts for the SRMK18N, but none of them include the [...]

Lima, Peru Chinatown


I’m not a purist when it comes to Chinese food. Having grown up in America in the 1970s, I am accustomed to food that doesn’t taste quite like it does in China or Hong Kong. However, nowadays, the options are plentiful and the quality is much improved. When dining out in Chinese restaurants, we even [...]

Let It Go in Chinese


If your child has already watched Frozen several times and has already memorized the lyrics to Let It Go, here’s a challenge. Learn the song in Chinese. Disney has a Cantonese, Mandarin and Taiwanese Mandarin version. I like 随它吧 by Bella Yao the best of all the Chinese versions.

Where the Mountain Meets the Moon


I have long been a fan of books by Grace Lin. Her children books feature a Chinese theme and include delightful illustrations. I’ve checked out all her picture books from the library and read them to my children. Now that my children are school age, we have moved on to her novel Where the Mountain [...]

What A Monkey Dad Learned From Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother


The Internet has been abuzz ever since the Wall Street Journal published Why Chinese Mothers Are Superior, an excerpt from Amy Chua’s Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother. If you want a more balanced preview, listen to an interview of the author from KQED’s Forum. Also, both Amazon and Apple offer a free sample from [...]

Chinese New Year Red Envelopes 新年红包


This year, Chinese New Year falls on February 14, 2010. My regular source of red envelopes is the local bank or 99 Ranch supermarket. Many Chinese bookstores also have red envelopes available for purchase. If you want to make your own, you can find free Ni Hao Kai-Lan Chinese New Year Red Envelopes at the [...]

Wei-Chuan Chinese Cookbooks


After having some success with Wei-Chuan’s Chinese Cuisine (中国菜), I decided to pick some some of the other Wei-Chuan cookbooks to diversify, namely Chinese Snacks (點心專輯), Chinese Cuisine: Beijing Style (北京菜) and Chinese Cuisine: Shanghai Style (上海菜). I really like the bilingual cookbooks produced by Wei-Chuan. While I prefer to read through recipes in English, [...]

Vienna Teng – Live Concert Recordings


I really like the music of Vienna Teng and was fortunate enough to hear her live a few years ago. If you’ve never heard her in concert, Internet Archive has a collection of her live recordings. You can also find her videos on YouTube.

iTunes is Annoying Me


I rarely listen to the radio. When I do, I almost listen exclusively to KQED, which is not the best source for hearing new or old Chinese music. So, I pretty much depend on the Genius Just For You feature in iTunes to discover new music. iTunes seems to handle English artists and songs quite [...]



In Ratatouille, Remy’s ratatouille dish whisks the critic Anton Ego back to his childhood. I have yet to meet a dish that could summon my memories of childhood, but some children songs come close. For quite some time, I’ve been trying to figure out the lyrics to 当我们都在一起, which I had learned many, many years [...]