It’s that time of year when we put together a care package for the brother-in-law Charlie who lives on Lopez Island, off Seattle. And although the people who live on the island seem to be overwhelmed by the availability of wild fish and game, they lack a good “ethnic supermarket,” and so a trip to the Silom supermarket was required to buy some weird stuff for Charlie, along with slightly less weird stuff for myself.
I went for snacks as you’ll see. These regular flavor chicharons are “A Filipino Favorite” – not everybody knows that, though I think I might have guessed.
Then there were these kind of crab-shaped, though not at all crab-tasting, things:
There were fried strips of pig’s ears in soy sauce – bit of a mixed bag there, some of the strips were nice and crunchy and easy to eat, some hard as rocks.
And Potae Potato Snack, made by the Useful Food Company of Bangkok:
But perhaps best of all – and this was for Charlie not for me – because the folks in Taiwan evidently don’t give a toss about western sensitivities, there was some vegetarian barbecue sauce decorated with swastikas:
And if this seems a bit dodgy, may I direct you to this menu dated 1911 from the Mission Indian Grill at the Alexandria Hotel in downtown LA. That’s Indian as in Native American.
I first saw the image in Josh Kun To Live and Eat in LA which also shows the inside of the menu which seems utterly “non-native,” though it’s hard to argue with a menu that features pickled walnuts, salmi of domestic duck and Caviar Imperiale d’Astrachan.
The Mission Indian Grill looked like this:
And there were evidently rooms where less elegant activities went on.