favorite things: rice with shoyu
I feel it necessary to begin this new Friday segment with my longest-running “favorite thing” — sticky rice with shoyu. My taste for it began in college when I was experiencing horrific digestive issues (that eventually resulted in gall bladder surgery) and practically the only thing in the world I could eat with any degree of success was a bowl of rice with soy sauce. My college roommate was Japanese-American, so it was she who first introduced me to this type of rice and the more flavorful “shoyu” version of soy sauce. I was instantly hooked! Prior to college, the only rice I’d ever eaten was of the Minute variety, so I had no idea that rice was meant to have its own flavor. After my first bite of short grain sticky rice, I’ve never looked back.
Although I’ve since conquered the digestive issues, rice with shoyu is still my go-to meal when I have no energy or time to cook. And I crave it in the same way other people crave chocolate. Whenever I watch Survivor, even as the contestants complain that they are so sick of rice, my mind is often triggered to fill a cooker and make some for myself. It’s a form of comfort food for me. I’m certain it’s as much emotional as anything else, but I truly feel satisfied after a steaming bowl of rice and shoyu. Never one without with the other. Sure, there’s nothing healthy about eating a giant bowl* of carbs and salt-infused soy, but that’s the beauty of comfort food. And I’m not soon to discard this one.
*the green and yellow bowl and the chopsticks shown in the picture are two more of my favorite things!