Blog Archives by Month

Posts for: May, 2021

May 24, 2021

Music and Memories: A Love Letter to Chinatown


By Christina Lehua Hummel-Colla, Library Collections Assistant

It is a weekday morning, and I am exploring a playlist titled “Chinese Rap Collection 2021,” by user XHZY on Spotify. The music keeps me company and helps me focus as I settle into the workday. A song by Vava, a rapper from Ya’an, Sichuan, China catches my attention and I switch over to the artist page so I can listen to more of her work. The second song under the “Popular” section of her page, 我的新衣 (wǒ de xīn yī) (My New Swag) begins with a rich instrumental section featuring traditional Chinese... Read more

May 19, 2021

Kimchi Fried Rice at the End of the Jar

Community / DIY

By Jen Kim, Conservator

So grateful am I for my colleague Christina Lehua Hummel-Colla’s post on the AAPI experience and comfort food, that I am chiming in with my family’s own style of kimchi fried rice. It’s a very basic version of the dish that’s great for using up leftovers. In fact, it’s better with leftovers. Like Christina, I don’t have a formal recipe, and no measurements, but hopefully this description can impart some sense of how I make it.

I always use older kimchi (there are many types but I’m referring to the bright red stuff with napa... Read more

May 18, 2021

How I Owe My Life to Spam (Plus a Recipe for Spam Fried Rice)

Community / DIY

By: Keisha Raines, Communications and Digital Marketing Manager

There doesn’t seem to be a middle ground for Spam. You either think it’s weird (which it is) and gross or you love it and think it’s delicious (which it also is.) For my family in war-torn Guam, it was salvation. Without Spam, I might not be here today. To understand how canned pork plays into my creation, you need to know how it got to Guam.

To say the residents of Guam love Spam is an understatement. The people of Guam eat an average of 16 cans per person annually, more Spam per capita than... Read more

May 18, 2021

Garlic, SPAM, & Rice: A Comfort Food Trinity

Community / DIY
By Liza Posas, Head of Research Services and Archives

I am joining in on the fried rice game with my Autry colleagues Jennifer, Yuki, Keisha, and of course the woman who led the charge, Christina.

Like my colleagues, my version of fried rice is derived from something that is as familial as it is familiar. Growing up, my father was the fried rice maker in the house. And our fried rice was synonymous to GARLIC fried rice that included just a few ingredients, basic instructions, and the promise of comfort food savoriness (or dare I say “umami”).

Dad’s Garlic Fried... Read more

May 13, 2021

Spam Fried Rice for the Soul

Community / DIY

By Christina Lehua Hummel-Colla, Library Collections Assistant

The years of our coronavirus, 2020 and 2021, have been hard on us all—including Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) communities, targeted as scapegoats for the COVID-19 crisis from the start. Given the co-morbidity of disease and racial violence, from anti-Jewish pogroms during the Black Death to 19th century anti-Asian racism during the 1817 Cholera Pandemic , I am hardly surprised, yet... Read more