A Lineage Food Memory: Sophia
“I have always equated time and effort to love — good and delicious things take time.”
Sophia brought her childhood and adult memories to life with stunning detail, and we are humbled she chose to share the story of growing up in a Taiwanese family with us. She brings the essence of her mother to life through a love language of preparing and sharing mealtimes together - a time to connect in an otherwise busy life.
Please enjoy Sophia’s food memories with us below.
Sophia’s Food Memory
For women in my family — it always starts with "Have you eaten yet?"
Both of my parents worked to support three children in school, so meals were limited to dinnertime together. However, the fridge would always be stocked. No matter how busy she was — mom would get rice cakes from the market, Taiwanese cold noodles with sesame sauce, cucumber and carrot slices, giant cans of clam chowder from Costco, etc. We were never hungry.
For dinner and weekends when my mom cooks — the kitchen would be filled with the smell of shiitake mushrooms, fried dried shrimp that creates bursts of flavors in Taiwanese cuisine, and all sort of steamed and stir-fried dishes.
Being the girl in the family — I was tasked with grating radishes for the steamed radish cake. Or handed the bowl of minced dumpling fillings to stir with chopsticks. The smell of sesame oil and the sharp bite of radish will always take me back to my mom’s kitchen.
Table settings at our home are always packed, and messy, with a family of five squished into a 600 square meter apartment. Too many chopsticks, metal bowls, giant steamers, Japanese-influence tableware. The aesthetics of my childhood has greatly affected me and pushed me to embrace minimalism and white space in my home in Vancouver.
I have always equated time and effort to love — good and delicious things take time. Everyone is welcomed at the table, no one leaves hungry. Food is love, food is memories. Those are values that I carry with me to this day and will pass on to future generations.
-Sophia H. @sophiahsin on Instagram
Thank you to everyone who shared their food memories with us. For more memories, follow along on social media, and subscribe to our newsletter.