SPAAC SNACCJan 30, 2021
Banchan! #2 - (Still) Mad About Mahjong
Did you want to yell and rant when the whole Mahjong Line thing surfaced? Were you confused about the situation and why people called it an act of cultural appropriation? In this episode of Banchan!, Pauline and Christina break down how The Mahjong Line's "revamp" of mahjong constitutes a classic case of racist cultural appropriation and why calling it "cultural appreciation" in this instance just ISN'T IT. Also, did you know that mahjong is food culture? We talk about the broader culture that surrounds mahjong before delivering some local food news in Seattle.
Links and articles mentioned can be found at our podcast page on divergingmag.com
Episode 13: Donut Doulas
Is there anything as beautiful as watching the birth of a donut? Not according to Thomas! For this holiday season, celebrate the birth of a holy child with a scrumptious holey dessert. In this episode, we talk about why it’s spelled ‘donut’ and ‘doughnut’, highlight its Asian American history, and share some of our favorite spots in Seattle.
Episode 12: Potato Chips and the Mystery of Crisps
What makes a potato chip a chip, and how is it different from a crisp? What are some of the best potato chips you can buy from your local chain supermarket? This month, we dive deep into the bottom of multiple bags of potato chips to find our answers. Melie Ros (she/her, they/them) joins us on this episode, in which we taste test each person’s favorite potato chip, muse over the chip’s true nature, and indulge in every loud and delicious *crrrooonnnchhh* possible.
Banchan! #1 - Hainan Chicken Election Blues
SPAAC SNACC now comes with Banchan! – a new minisoda series where we provide commentary on the drama in social media food discourse and dig deeper into conversations on food, identity, and social justice. We will also be using this space to share news on the food scene in Seattle, where we're based.
This inaugural episode is a special double feature. In the first segment, Pauline and Christina talk about the Twitter storm that brewed over Hainan Chicken Rice, and bid sad farewells to a beloved restaurant in Capitol Hill before dishing on some newcomers to the International District. Jenny and Thomas round off the episode with a thoughtful, reflective segment on voting and the elections that are happening as we speak.
Suika lives on at both Tamari Bar and Rondo, which are in Capitol Hill The other Korean dessert place that Christina mentions is Kakigori Dessert Cafe, which is located in the Central District.
Another Korean place in the International District is a corn dog place! ChungChun Rice Hot Dog has some fun and nostalgic flavors.
Episode 11: What We Consume and What Consumes Us
Echoing the gravity of our times, SPAAC SNACC takes a deep dive into what we’re eating and what’s eating us in this episode. We discuss consumerism, the possibility for a theology of food, and how what we consume in the media reflects our desires, fears, and thoughts about ourselves in relation to the divine.
Episode 10: Self-Care Is ... ?
How do you take care of yourself in a pandemic? Special guest and SPAAC mod Tim brought their thoughts about self-care, which includes food and more food. We ponder how food relates to our self-care and also ask other very serious questions like: "Is pooping self-care?" “Is food just pre-poop?” "Could we have talked any more about healthy bowel movements?" (But really, we care about your gut health. Probiotics are awesome!)
Note: We are still working out some audio difficulties, so we recommend listening with speakers instead of headphones, if possible!
Episode 9: Frozen Foods and HOT, HOT Rage
Season 2 of SPAAC SNACC kicks off in the “2020-iest” fashion – the SNACCs gather around a warm and bright Google Meet call with some delicious, easily prepared meals from their freezers as they rage about life. From poorly moderated Facebook groups to the current administration failing to protect international students, the SNACCs’ heat on this call might be all that they need to cook their meals.
The SNACCs talk about an assortment of things that might trigger listeners. They ask that you take care of yourselves, drink water, and know that your rage is holy.
Episode 8: Zoom Chats and More SNACCs
Washington state is still observing shelter in place, and over the past couple months, many of us have been staying connected through video calls. Inspired by this community building, the SNACCs called a couple members of Seattle PAAC who haven’t yet been on the podcast.
First up, Pauline called Kenji Fujinaka, and they talked about “procrasti-baking” and the experience that brought Kenji to SPAAC. Then Christina spoke with Katya Nemec about her upbringing in Asia, the complexities of her identity and how it has shifted in different contexts in the US, as well as what is bringing her joy during the lockdown.
Thank you to Kenji and Katya for joining us on the podcast!
Minisoda #4: Pancit and Poetry
[cw: body image; please note that the slurs of ‘banana’ and ‘coconut’ appear in this minisoda]
What are new ‘norms’ that you want to continue after this pandemic? For Mickey, it’s making sure to spend more time with his family. On this quarantine minisoda, Mickey invites his younger brother Jonathan to share a spoken word poem about decolonizing his racial identity. The brothers talk about Jon's journey, art, being brown, their upbringing, and their hopes for the future.
Additionally, Mickey has an announcements for you snaccs! We hope that you are keeping safe and are doing well. We wish you health and peace in these uncertain times. We are here for you!
Minisoda #3: Instafoods and Influenzers
[loud slurping noises]
Ah, instant noodles on a cold day ... and when you're practicing social distancing? The stores might be out of instant ramen but we found some noodles to slurp up with our third minisoda. Christina and Pauline dive into all things coronavirus, whether we're thinking about past epidemics in Asia or what the situation is like now in the US. Featuring brief homages to therapy and pizza, as you do. Stay safe out there.
A thing we didn't mention is that we believe in tipping restaurant staff well! It's ridiculous that they're not paid well enough and have to rely on tips. So if you're at a restaurant in a culture that tips, please do! Especially now because in Seattle, where restaurants can only do take out, business has nosedived and restaurants need your help!
Episode 7: Karē and Comfort Foods
Is that sunlight or just a false glimmer of hope on the way to more cold and dreary weather? Welcome to Seattle, where the sun is a lie and only comfort food can get you through the last vestiges of winter. In this episode, the SNACCast revels in a smorgasbord of their go-to comfort foods, featuring corn dogs, Taco Bell, Costco food court offerings, as well as the polarizing century egg. Here's hoping early spring is on the way!
Episode 6: B-b-b-boba!
SPAAC SNACC rings in a brand new decade with an episode on: b-b-b-boba! SPAAC member and doctor-in-training Karen Chung joins us as a special guest in this episode, where we talk about our favorite boba joints in Seattle, our preferred orders, and why we fear that our controversial takes on boba could get us canceled.
Minisoda #2: Christmas Cheer and Puzzled Presents
There’s so much to snacc on every time we record, and not all of the tasty morsels make it past the edits. Our second “minisoda” comes from our fourth episode "Bibim Naengmyeon and Birthdays,” when we talked about some of our most memorable birthdays and gifts. Jenny and Thomas share about one gift, in particular, that was memorable for all the wrong reasons.…
Your snaccs wish you a very happy holiday season, and we will return with full episodes in the new decade!
Episode 5: Garnishes and Giving Thanks
[Content warning: Thanksgiving, holiday season]
SPAAC SNACC takes on the ultimate food holiday: Thanksgiving. Listen in for an epic serving of stories that include turkey with kimchi, vegans navigating the holiday, awkward family tensions, and the pressure for Asians to have a “real American” Thanksgiving.
Minisoda #1: Rainier Cherries and the “Perfect Child”
There’s so much to snacc on in every recording session, and not all of the tasty morsels make it past the edits. This month, SPAAC SNACC shares its first minisode (or “minisoda,” if you will) featuring a conversation between Pauline and her mom, Terri, who reminisce about how Pauline used to be the perfect, compliant child and how seaweed used to remind her of Christopher Columbus.
This conversation was originally recorded for our second episode, “Gochujang and School Lunches,” released on July 18, 2019.
Episode 4: Bibim Naengmyeon and Birthdays
Episode 3: Dango and Wet Noods
Which Asian noodle dish is “the best”? Your intrepid SNACCast takes on this controversial question in this episode. We have our contenders and we have a tournament bracket - which dish will prevail? Following an epic noodle battle, we talk about breathing, vitamins, and how to get a round ass. The recipe for Mitatashi Dango - Rice Balls in Syrup is available on the blog post!