The post was published on our blog: unavsa.org/blog/food-caterers-more-than-family-friends
In it, one of our Civic Engagement committee members interviews two food caterers to discuss their experiences cooking traditional Vietnamese food, the difficulties they may encounter, and the communities they build through their labor. We have included some quotes from the article below:
With Tết, or Lunar New Year, coming up, many members take part in visiting family, attending parties, and of course, eating yummy food. Have you ever wondered where does that food come from?
I remember growing up, my parents drove me to various houses, hidden away in suburbs, where they’d pay “family friends” to cook Vietnamese dishes that they either did not know how to make, or have the hours required to make these intricate dishes.
We contacted two caterers, based in San Jose and Toronto, respectively, to learn about their experiences and narratives as people carrying amazingly important and rare knowledge to a diasporic community: how to cook traditional Vietnamese food. These caterers cook dishes not just exclusively for family friends, but for their entire communities. Their significance accumulates when we begin to learn about the difficulties associated with cooking these dishes.