Sitting at a full table surrounded by the ones I love has always sparked joy.
Stories that have been shared countless times still seem to carry the same flutters of laughter and, frankly, some unashamed embarrassment.
And when accompanied by a bountiful spread . . . this, my friends, is where the magic happens. This is where community happens.
The Full Table is a space where my husband, Cody, and I come together to share stories and recipes from our own table—whether it’s for two, at one of our holiday potlucks or during our travels. The joy of hosting and gathering for a slow, shared meal is in our bones. We love to feed people and open up our home. And we love a hearty meal that's often healthy, yet spiked with something interesting.
As a Filipino-Chinese-American gal that spent the beginning of her eating life in small-town, Springfield, Kentucky before moving to Virginia Beach, where the table was less about Southern, fried goodness and more focused on fish sauce, fried fish and stews most days, my palate and practice as a home cook has landed in its own arena with an equal passion for fresh vegetables as I have for pizza.
Cody, a Kansas City-born, yet Virginia Beach-raised fellow, has a dual appreciation for true barbecue as he does local seafood, as one can assume living next to the Atlantic for most of his life. He’ll be chiming in from time to time, so stay tuned for his tips on cooking his coveted tri-tip, latest spicy condiment, craft beer banter and more.
Together, we celebrate local, seasonal produce at our table with a sort of healthy-ish approach to every meal . . . except when pizza’s on the brain.
You can also join in on our food adventures as we document meals and stories from our travels in The Traveling Full Table section of our blog.
Yet, more than anything, I hope that you can serve these dishes at your table, surround them with the ones you love dearly and leave fuller than when you arrived.
Portraits by Gian Valdivia.