My vietnamese name is Lexuan but to most people, I’m Lily. Funny how nicknames are born. Without trying to age myself, decades ago, one of my very first high school friends (lookin’ at you Myranda!) suggested to call me Lily because she thought it was easier to pronounce, I loved the simplicity of it (Lexy! Lexus! Leshuan!… was getting tiresome to correct) and it stuck ever since!
You might wonder…. why digital nerd and why food blogging now? Well, over the years, at (many) home and cottage parties I had hosted, my friends asked me to share recipes of meals I had made for them. This immediately sparked an idea for me to create a food blog BUT over time I didn’t have the motivation (or time) to act on it. After some very significant changes that had happened in my life, I finally decided to go for my passion! (Why not? I’ve got 15+ years of IT background combined with 25+ yrs of self-taught experience as a home cook and baker).
Whether at home or at a friend’s house, the kitchen is where I spend most of my time cooking, sharing stories and pairing a meal with a glass of Cabernet Sauvignon or Rosé. Cooking (and baking) is my go-to therapy that gives me the ability to enjoy the creative process of making a dish from scratch, with love and laughter. If you think about it, food connects us all on many levels. Cultural identity, childhood memories, travel experiences and so much more. In a way, it’s a love language!
When I’m not in the kitchen, I sweat it out at the gym, tire out my sister’s dog Bubba with long walks (much to his excitement),
lose track of time in a good book or laugh until my stomach hurts at get togethers with amazing friends, travelling & exploring new places to devour yummy food. Ok, i’ll stop here before this starts to sound like a dating ad!
Sweet2Savoury was created in September 2019, shortly before the pandemic hit. I am the recipe developer, writer, food photographer and videographer behind this passion project of mine. As my blog name suggests, I will be sharing with you simple easy-to-follow recipes of tasty entreés, delectable baked goods, quick and sometimes even sophisticated meals (for the more adventurous cook) all made from scratch with mouth-watering pictures and videos! The diversity in my recipes stems from my background and places I’ve lived at. You will see a mix of Vietnamese, German and Canadian recipes along with other types I’ve learned and loved over the years.
Thank you for spending your time browsing through my blog. If you’re trying any of my recipes, send me a picture of your dish, leave me a comment or tag @sweet2savoury on social media with #sweet2savoury. I’d love to hear your story, feedback or suggestions! If you want to know more about me and what influenced me to start cooking and baking 25 years ago, click “more about me” below (warning: it’s a long one!) to read about my story.
Happy Cooking! ♥
In 1981, my parents fled Vietnam. At the time, Mom and Dad did not know each other when they fled. Each (with very little to no money in their pocket) left on a rugged boat that was overloaded with people who had the same intention of leaving behind their old life in hopes of building a better one in another country. Why? Simply put, the country was being taken over by “viet cong” aka. Communists. The Future looked grim for the people of Vietnam and you can imagine how terrifying that must have felt not knowing what their future was going to look like. So terrifying that they were willing to risk their life to flee a government that was taking over complete control of the state, military and media.
A humanitarian organization called “Cap Anamur” was led by Christel and Rupert Neudeck along with their friends from Germany ( Wikipedia, 21 March 2019, accessed 10 October 2019, < https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cap_Anamur> ) who made it their mission to help refugees and displaced people worldwide. Weeks maybe even months went by with vietnamese refugees aimlessly floating on the wide open ocean water with possibilities of pirates attacking, running out of food, kids or elders dying on the boat and fighting mother nature’s unpredictable sea weather, all while they were struggling not to give up hope of the bright future they were after. When Cap Anamur showed up to rescue my parents (individually), they had practically kissed the floor of the ship while crying tears of happiness and feeling overwhelmed with relief to be rescued. Once the ship was full with saved refugees, Cap Anamur dropped them off at surrounding countries such as the Philippines or Malaysia in order for them to go back and save more refugees.
Many Vietnamese people resided at refugee camps for a total of 9+ months (some are still living in these countries to this day). During this time my parents met for the first time and began dating. When it was time for them to leave the phillipines, in order for them to immigrate to Germany together as a couple they had to be engaged or married. So they decided to get engaged (without a ring) and flew on an airplane for the first time in their lives to a strange land where they had high hopes for a better future. A very small wedding celebration (more like dinner get together) with close friends and family took place in 1982 shortly after they settled in. Tough times were still ahead as they began to re-build their life with zero money in their pockets. Mom, while pregnant with me, stayed at home in their small apartment to learn german as a second language and dad worked at a nut & bolt factory.