Mr. Wu Creates a Masterpiece

Mr. Wu's recently created masterpiece: scallops in orange sauce with asparagus.

So far my resolution to manage my time mindfully has been a disaster. I seem to occupy a strange Bermuda Triangle in which time disappears without a trace.

My late husband used to say, “You can only manage what you can control.” He was on to something. I need to stop beating myself up over “circumstances beyond my control”–or at least begin to chisel away at the underlying causes of my state of being.

Today’s plans included taking down the trees at GPAC–but the surprise du jour was a fantastic opportunity for a product promo. It was a lot of fun to watch the “creative juices” of the photographer and editor, Leah,  flow as they carefully crafted an eye catching photo for their layout in RSVP.  They are representative of the many great people working in our local  publishing community.  The Memphis  music scene rightfully gets a lot of attention–but we are blessed with a bounty of sensitive, intelligent, and enthusiastic artists. There is so much talent in Memphis. Because of the city’s size, one of the great things about Memphis is that you are able to visit and spend time with each other.The various artistic communities are constantly rubbing elbows and support each other through FaceBook, blogs, and word-of-mouth.

After the shoot, we developed a set list for our “unplugged” concert on Sunday afternoon at the Germantown Community Theatre. We are all looking forward to singing the way we do at our rehearsals, which has a special sweetness.

Mr. Wu's spinach is so extraordinary that is steals the show, no matter what is shows up with on the plate.

And then finally, to Mr. Wu’s Royal Panda to meet Mary and Bill for dinner. We were so overjoyed to see each other after a long holiday hiatus in which they entertained and hosted a number of guests–their home is always open to their friends and family. They are a real inspiration to me, because they are energetic sharers  and cheerful givers.

Mary has fallen under the spell of Mr. Wu’s enchanting orange sauce. And she is not alone. His orange sauce, well, like his ginger sauce, and well, like his green tea sauce, and well, like his hoisin sauce, and like his peking sauce, and well, forget it–ALL of his sauces are incredibly complex and a delight to the palate.  Still, there is something irresistible about that orange sauce. It combines a sweetness, a tartness, and a savory quality with a luscious texture. It just flat out makes your socks roll up and down.

When Mr. Wu arrived like a medic to our table to take Mary’s order, she explained to him her chronic orange sauce deficiency, adding that it so happens that she is an avid fan of scallops, and wouldn’t it be a great idea if he could develop a super-dish that contained the both of them? Mr. Wu, laughed and said, that would be possible.

One of my favorite "go-to" dishes when it all sounds so good that I am undecided: Royal Panda Shrimp.

When it arrived, the white scallops shone white and pearly in the midst of the dark orange sauce that was studded with bits of  dried orange peel. Mary pronounced it glorious. And even decided that it might be her top pick of all of his dishes, although she would put his sea bass–with orange sauce on the same pedestal.

Bill had the shrimp with spinach. There is no equal anywhere to Mr. Wu’s spinach. No where. It is the best–and I have yet to meet ANYONE who has had it who does not agree. His sauteed spinach is other worldly delicious.

I had my “Gosh I can’t decide it’s all so good” meal, which is to say I ordered the Royal Panda Shrimp–a duplex of shrimp on a plate, each prepared with a different sauce. It is very yin and yang. One is as spicy as the other is mild, and it is served with that fabulous spinach on one side, and crisp green snow peas on the other. I just never get tired of it, and love it every time I have it. In fact, this is the second time this week I’ve enjoyed it!

Too much of a good thing? I don’t think so–that’s impossible. Instead, it seems that there is  just not enough time to enjoy my blessings. And that just shows how blessed I truly am.

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