Chopstick Cinema

Celeste Heiter's Adventures in Asian Food & Film

Shopping for Fresh Ingredients and Prepping Dishes Ahead

This afternoon, I went shopping at my favorite gourmet grocery story for all my fresh ingredients. I bought bushels of fresh produce, along with several specialty items like coconut milk, cellophane noodles, roasted peanuts, and fresh shrimp. When I got home with the groceries, I took photos of all the lovely produce, washed and trimmed all the vegetables, peeled and deveined the shrimp, and prepared the satay skewers for grilling. That's a pretty good head start for tomorrow evening's Suriyothai Dinner & a Movie. And since I'm serving everything buffet style, the dinner preparation should be much more relaxed than my usual flying-by-the-seat-of-my-pants production trying to get everything to come off the stove at once.

An Interesting Aside:

I had an amusing experience while I was shopping for my fresh ingredients. A few weeks ago, I was on my way into our neighborhood Safeway to buy groceries when I spotted a pair of tiny baby birds that had gotten out of the nest before they could fly. The mama and papa birds were on the roof of the store watching over them but were helpless to get them back into the nest, which was built in the rafters of the store's facade. So I corralled a handsome young bagboy into getting a ladder, and with a piece of cardboard we scooped them up and put them back in the nest. I went on about my shopping and never did find out how the whole incident turned out. Then on Friday, I was shopping at Valergas, another grocery store across town, and in the produce department, I spotted that same handsome young man stacking bananas. So I wheeled my cart over and said, "Do you have a twin, or do you work at Safeway too?" To which he replied, "I have a twin brother."