Winner of Your Best Road Trip Snack

July 12, 2013

Congratulations to savorthis, whose Bulgogi Jerky won the contest for Your Best Road Trip Snack.

  Bulgogi Jerky from Food52

1. Describe an early food experience that has influenced the way you think about food and/or cooking.
My parents moved us to Denver from New York City when I was three. A few years later they helped an amazing Chinese chef they'd met in New York relocate to Denver to open a restaurant. While he was an incredibly talented chef, he was a terrible business man and eventually left his restaurant(s) and our lives. But while he was around, I remember him preparing great feasts for my parents and their friends and teaching my dad all sorts of wonderful recipes and techniques. I grew up with ducks drying in front of fans, pantries full of (then) exotic condiments, weird dried vegetables and assembly lines at the kitchen counter where I was tasked with rolling out thin pancakes for Peking duck or stuffing BBQ pork buns. I have since inherited my dad's well-seasoned wok and utensils, a giant triple decker steamer, several cleavers, and many of the recipes my dad made while I was growing up. It gave me a love not only of Asian cuisines, but also of planning and hosting magnificent feasts for friends.

2. What's your least favorite kitchen task?
I have only had to skin a cow's tongue once, but it was a pretty disturbing task that I'd like to not do again.

3. Your favorite kitchen tool?
Many things come to mind, but I have an old, weathered flat wooden spoon that is tapered just right and has a perfectly smooth round handle. I have yet to find another anywhere that's nearly as nice to hold on to. 

4. What is your idea of comfort food?
I really love a good bowl of brothy, noodly soup, especially with a perfectly cooked poached egg.

5. What is your greatest kitchen disaster?
Years ago I tried to make my husband a German chocolate cake for his birthday. I used an old cookbook of my grandmother's which involved some method of heating the sweetened condensed milk in the can. It must have cooked way too long because when I went to stir it together wit the coconut and pecans, it got harder and harder to stir. I briefly tried to rescue the situation by molding the dense mixture into two roundish shapes to put between my cake layers, but it hardened like giant hockey pucks. I gave my husband the cake for laughs, but it was completely inedible. I have since sourced professional and delicious german chocolate cake for him elsewhere.

See what other Food52 readers are saying.

  • mcs3000
  • QueenSashy
  • EmilyC
  • William Widmaier
    William Widmaier
  • aargersi
Food52 (we cook 52 weeks a year, get it?) is a food and home brand, here to help you eat thoughtfully and live joyfully.


mcs3000 July 16, 2013
Agree w/ @mtrelaun. Congrats on your win!
savorthis July 16, 2013
Thank you!~
QueenSashy July 15, 2013
Love the recipe, but I love the dress even more! Cheers!
savorthis July 16, 2013
Thanks! I was joking that it was a good "eatin" dress because it's roomy where it matters and that night we had about 10 courses.
EmilyC July 15, 2013
Congrats on your win! How wonderful to have been exposed to such diverse cooking at such a young age!
savorthis July 16, 2013
Thanks Emily. I probably didn't realize it until much later and am trying to impress that same diversity on my daughter.
William W. July 15, 2013
Congrats on the win! I love this recipe :) I'm working on a Caribbean jerk flavored jerky with your recipe as my inspiration!
savorthis July 16, 2013
Yum. I imagine there are endless variations. Post your version when it's ready...we have some camping coming up.
aargersi July 14, 2013
Love the Q&A - I first read "ducks DYING in front of fans" and though hmmm - odd. Haha. Everyone that tried your jerky when I made it went bananas for it!!
savorthis July 16, 2013
Well, my dad did hunt, so there were dead ducks and pheasant hanging in the garage but no active dying in the house. Thanks! I am so glad such an authority as yourself tested it.
ChefJune July 13, 2013
Your story of the German Chocolate Cake made me howl with laughter. It is not that hard, really. and even easier are German Chocolate Brownies. PM me if you want the recipe.
savorthis July 13, 2013
Ok- I have until October to master them and will take all the help I can get!
mtrelaun July 12, 2013
Best portrait EVER! Congrats on the win.
savorthis July 13, 2013
Thank you! It was a fun contest. That photo is from a friend's NYE dinner that featured only dishes from Thomas Keller cookbooks. I had just garnished the Oysters and Pearls. Holy richness.