Sunday, November 14, 2010

Adoption update: I'm a Good Cook... and It's in my Genes...

I've always been told I'm a good cook. I don't know if that's really true since I basically just add butter and garlic to everything... but I really do enjoy cooking.

Example 1: I worked at Williams-Sonoma in college for four years. I bought my All-Clad cookware set before I was 21.

Example 2: In college I thought it would be a great idea to serve my fellow senior, sorority sisters to a Thanksgiving dinner. My roommates, Lucy and Staci put it together... but we made a turkey that year for 20+ girls. The thing I learned? You can cook a turkey upside down and it becomes more juicy. (I had to work that day, so I prepped the turkey, and Lucy put it upside down in the oven. She'd call me throughout the day with random things like: a) she didn't like to touch raw meat and b) she couldn't get the wings to tuck under.)

Example 3: I still have dinner parties all the time... even when I was a young journalist, I'd invite the whole newsroom over and cook. I think the most I cooked for was about 100 during a Lunar New Year party.


I've been Skyping a lot with my sister HJ and her hubby Glenn. Last night, we were dreaming up ways to start a business. One idea was to open a Korean BBQ restaurant and noribang (Korean-style karaoke.)

She told me that we should get our birth mother involved...

Apparently, my Korean mother owned a noodle, sushi and Korean BBQ restaurant for several years! From the time HJ was a toddler until high school, my Korean mother was a restaurateur.


Also, she said all of the girls are great cooks... that means Hyun Jeong, Hyun Mi, and Yeon Jeong... plus ME!

HJ even had a nickname-- Dae Jang Geum. Dae Jang Geum is also the title of one of the most popular Korean dramas at the moment... it's loosely based on the real-life story about a legendary girl (Jang-Geum) who became the first woman to be the supreme royal physician of her times. She started in the royal kitchen, I believe, which back in the dynasty days was a very powerful position. You're feeding royalty! It could also be a dangerous job (people tried to poison people all the time...) BTW, I discovered Dae Jang Geum during my last visit to San Fran with my Imo and Uncle Stacy. They love that show!

Anyway, this little story just made me happy, and I thought adoptive families may be interested to hear...

We always wonder if genetics or environment plays a role in who we are. Of course, the answer is both. BUT, I've learned two things-- my love of cooking comes from my biological mother. So does my love of singing.

My mom, Sharon, cooks a lot, but I'm not convinced it's a hobby of hers. However, she does love musicals... we spent every weekend watching The Sound of Music, Grease, Annie. However, my mom doesn't sing.

We probably won't open a Korean BBQ or a noribang... but dreaming allowed me to find out a little more about my reality. Pretty neat how the little things can impact so much. It meant nothing at all for my sister to tell me that small tidbit, but I see it like a revelation.

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