On Thursday, May 18 at 6:00 PM, San Mateo County Libraries welcomes VC Tang—author of the Thai cookbook/memoir Come Eat, Grandma!—for an author talk and virtual cook-along. She will show us how to prepare one of her favorite recipes from the book, tangy and fragrant Tom Yum Soup.
Once you’ve registered, you’ll receive your Zoom invitation and ingredients list.
Savor Personal Stories of Thai Home Cooking
“This book is for those who want to enjoy the vibrance that is Thai home cuisine—and furthermore, for those who want to fully embrace in the toiling and savoring of preparing our food.” —VC Tang
Isolated by pandemic lockdowns and distressed by anti-Asian violence, VC Tang decided it was time to connect with her Thai heritage and her creative dreams in a new way. She sat down for six weeks of determined writing, pouring stories and comfort food recipes onto the page.
During this same time, Tang simmered up old and new dishes in her kitchen, which felt both like a personal refuge and a site of culinary discovery. And, the dining room became a place for sharing memories with her mother (who had immigrated from Thailand) and deepening her connection to her family’s roots. For example, when asking about her mother’s taste for Southern Chinese ingredients and flavors, Tang discovered that one of her grandmothers was Chinese.
As a result, Come Eat, Grandma! is a warm, vibrant cookbook memoir, infused with a passion for sharing good food and preserving histories.
In VC’s own words, “I am not a pro chef, but I know the smell of home, and I can taste love. I often joke with my mom, ‘Do you know why it tastes good? Praw wa ow jai sai.’ Because you put your heart into it.”
Get to Know VC Tang
VC Tang began helping out in the kitchen since she could mix her first pancake batter. For her, cooking is a way to connect and share stories while nourishing herself and others.
She is an author, speaker and consultant. She has two decades of experience developing educational experiences and professional development programs for youth and adults rooted in self-discovery, leadership and traditional practices in modern times. She works with individuals, organizations, schools, entrepreneurs and artists in the U.S. and Thailand and is driven by a vision for healthy and vibrant lifestyles and livelihoods.
Her nuanced approach comes from being mentored by teachers in Asian arts all her life. She spent over 30 years immersed in community, ritual and performing arts at the Berkeley Thai Buddhist temple, and currently trains in applying Taijiquan, Zen and Taoist principles in daily life.
In 2022, she published her first cookbook memoir, Come Eat, Grandma! Recipes and Stories of Thai Home Cooking, to pass on wisdom to anyone hungry for food and stories as her elders have generously fed her. Born and raised in San Francisco, VC enjoys pop music, Star Trek and epic movies. You can subscribe to her newsletter at stirfrystories.com.