Weekend Musings (April 17th, 2010)

It was one of those weeks that we felt that the blog has taken over our lives. And that is not good. We had our hosting company sending us a warning that our site is taking too much resources that it is affecting the performance of other sites on the server. At least this hosting company did the right thing by giving us one month to make changes to the blog.

We need to make the blog lighter and so expect some changes over the next couple of weeks. Most of it will be subtle but we might remove some features. There is going to be a lot of work for Suanne and I for the next few weeks.

The Diversely Delicious CookbookThe-Diversely-Delicious-1-600x400Finally!

Suanne’s compilation of the Diversely Delicious cookbook is now 99% complete. It just require a final look through and we can order the books from the publisher. The launch of the cookbook is targeted for April 30th and will be unveiled during the Richmond Community Kitchen (RCK) Open House.

The RCK Open House is opened to friends of Community Kitchen members. If you like to attend please let Suanne know (email suanne@chowtimes.com). It is a Pot Luck. Come with a favourite dish and meet new friends. Children are welcome.

The details of the event are as follows:

Friday, April 30th, 2010
6:00 PM – 8:30 PM
Gilmore United Church
8060 No 1 Road, corner Blundell

The proceeds from the sales of the cookbook will go entirely to the Richmond Community Kitchen. So we hope you will support the Richmond Community Kitchen who had contributed countless recipes to chowtimes by buying the cookbook.

HST – Speak Out Before Its Too Late

I want to be one who will speak out against the HST (Harmonized Sales Tax) but really I don’t know where to register my opposition. It seems like there are some confusion. Are there several groups who are spearheading this fight against HST?

One thing you need to make sure of. You need to make sure your voice is really counted. Apparently, you don’t sign just any petitions and there are rules around the validity of petitions. For instance, you can’t sign online petitions – that does not count. You have to sign petitions in person and you must be a registered voter with Elections BC. Looks like the most effective group is this one. There are locations listed on the website where you could go and sign the petition. However, there are none that is near where I live at this time.

For me the biggest issue is the additional 7% HST tax that will be levied on top of the 5% GST. This is how this will look like for a $12 meal.

Current With HST
Price on Menu $12.00 $12.00
Taxes .60 1.44
Tips (15%) 1.80 1.80
Total $14.40 $15.24

So currently we already pay something like 20% on top of the price on the menu. With the HST we will be paying around 27% … more than a quarter on top of the price on the menu.

The HST will not only affect restaurant meals.

Extreme Dim Sum (XDS)

It seems like there is a demand for an Extreme Dim Sum out there. LotusRapper helped identify a candidate restaurant with a really interesting menu. While waiting for a proper Chinese translation to English, Google is translating the menu items as follows:

  • Shunfeng Extreme Snow Pack
  • Qingping osmanthus cake cool
  • Moist bird’s nest tarts
  • Braised lips even Ju
  • Discovery ears dried tofu fried scallops
  • Baby shrimp, dried scallop and vegetable dip
  • XO sauce pork neck ridge mussel Osmanthus fragrans
  • Sauce explosion Monochoria
  • Pig’s feet Vinegar
  • Nourishing chicken with rice wine
  • Grilled enoki mushroom rot ball
  • Ginger Fried Kale seedling
  • South crispy chicken breast knee
  • Sugar pea dumplings seagull
  • Bao Zhi surface coil
  • Huizhou chicken package Aberdeen
  • West juice cattle tendons
  • Mushrooms steamed Tofu skin roll
  • Fried shrimp cake nine dishes
  • Top Hung Lai Rong tape
  • Seaweed wasabi spring rolls
  • Shunfeng gold cake
  • Crispy turnip cakes with mustard green
  • Enoki mushroom beef intestines

Sounds interesting? LOL!

I am tentatively looking at doing this on a Saturday morning. That is two Saturdays from now … on May 1st. I’ll let you know the details once … I get the response from the restaurant concerned. Saturday mornings are busy times and I want to make sure that the restaurant is willing to support our party. So, if you are interested to attend, please send an email to suanne@chowtimes.com.

Special Ramen Event Exclusive for Chowtimes Readers

This morning, I was on the phone with a representative of a Ramen restaurant. We were discussing the proposal from the restaurant to organize an exclusive event for chowtimes readers. This will be exciting. The restaurant is thinking of creating a special menu for us … and even closing the restaurant for the night if we get enough people to attend. Like the 8GTCC event, I want to make this a learning experience and a gathering of fellow foodies besides just enjoying the food. He he he … I want to also make it cheap enough that you cannot resist but attend.

We are looking tentatively for a mid week event sometime in the middle of May. Let me know (by commenting) if you would be interested to attend. I just want to gauge the level of interest out there.

8GTCC – The Next Adventure

The 8GTCC Hunan event was a stunning success. I have gotten feedback that there is a buzz within the Chinese restaurant community about the series of 8GTCC dinners. The 8GTCC team will meet next week to plot the next step in the series of dinner. We have an idea what we want to do next. I do think we will have the plans ready within the next 2 weeks. So, stay tuned.

Taking it to the next level, I am going to check with the 8GTCC team if they will support the attempt to publish a book of the 8GTCC. I think I already have the ideas pretty much laid out but I would need support to pull this off.

This Post Has 0 Comments

  1. Jonnek

    Wow you guys are busy. I cant imagine working full time and then working on all the activities of the blog. It sounds like blogging is another part time job. My hats off to you guys for doing this.

    As for XDS, I didnt see the “Assorted Beef Testicles” from Hot Pot One included in the list. 🙂

  2. Gloria

    Congrats to Suanne for her completion of her book!
    “Sugar pea dumplings seagull” Yumm!
    I would definitely be interested be interested in the Ramen event!

  3. LotusRapper

    Count me in on the ramen fest !

  4. Darlene Clarke

    I’ll be sorry to miss the EDS event, but I’ll be away from Vancouver starting May 1st. I’d like more information on the Ramen event though. Would it be possible to order Suanne’s cookbook without attending the Open House? I’m interested in purchasing the book as I’ve enjoyed the recipes that I’ve tried. Looking forward to the next dinner.

    Thanks you and Suanne for the blog.


  5. Joe

    We’re in for Ramenfest 2010!

  6. Monica

    We are definitely very interested in the Ramen fest! And congrats to Suanne on her cookbook!

  7. iPanda

    So sad they forced chowtimes to compriminze the features especially they advertised “unlimited”.

  8. We’re in for ramen fest too. Maybe we can get TS to like ramen, finally. As she says, “I’ve never met a ramen I like.”

  9. Elaine

    I am interested in knowing the Chinese translations for all these! Kind of confusing when I am looking at the English names LMAO

  10. JJ

    Hi Chowtimes

    First time posting on Chowtimes, but I hav random posts on SecretEden. Like to just say I enjoy just browsing through all your fooding adventures and visit a few “hole-in-a-wall” type places just because I would not know of them otherwise.

    I would be very interested in joining the ramenfest since I missed out on the 8GTCC signup.

    Keep up the good work!

  11. etranger

    Maybe the Community Kitchen posts should be a separate blog. I read all of your posts, but wish I could go to Vancouver more to go to the actual restaurants! I do make over half of the recipes — lots of great stuff. How about some 8GCC cooking?

  12. l1ghtdark

    Really congratulations. The blog has grown so much and I think all the activities and events you have come up with are really creative and lack of a better word, smart. You’ve inspired a lot of people to become dedicated foodies. 🙂

  13. Marcia

    Both the extreme dim sum and the ramen event sound great.

  14. Nancy

    Ramen sounds yummy. Put me down for me and R.

  15. Ryan

    +1 about how to get the cookbook if I can’t attend the potluck. I would really like to get a copy and could pick up.

  16. Rmd_Foodie

    Totally interested in both the ramen and the dim sum gatherings! How can we get a copy of Suanne’s cookbook if we’re unable to attend the open house???

  17. grayelf

    I’m interested in XDS and Ramenfest 2010, likely with plus one for both!

  18. Eat. Travel. Eat!

    Only if the low tax amount was available in CA! Would be so nice :). Agree HST is too much! 2X the amount of the existing tax is quite big. 1 or 2 percent more would be a better way if they even wanted votes!

    I know of some of the XDS. Like the vinegar pig feet with the sweet vinegar taste.

    That video is on a repeat loop that will never completely load, will it?

    1. Ben

      Hi Eat Travel Eat:
      Be patient and wait for the load. It sometimes takes minutes to generate the video. It’s worth the wait. 🙂

  19. timetochow

    count me in for ramen and xds…

    make HST go away, please….

    the Olympics was great but not that great!

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