Hot Dogs and Ice Cream – July Food Holidays

My Mom does this thing. It might be a “moms in general” thing. Or it might be a krazy Korean ah-ju-mah thing. Or it might just be my Mom.

If I say that I like some certain food, even if I off-handedly mumble it during the hours of 8 pm and 11 pm during the weekdays when I know she is only half aware of my presence because the dramas are on Korean tv, my Mom somehow picks up on it and then supplies me with about 12 years’ worth of whatever it was. By the time I am down to the last few of whatever it was, I have to throw them away, a kind of  schizofrenetic eleventh hour intervention just before a forced overdose.

So, I exaggerate a little. It’s more like nine years, but I’m Korean-American and my breed can stretch food to twice its lifespan in an effort to save money.

Once during college, while back at home for a visit, I mentioned that I liked these tiny little Korean cookie-cakes shaped like walnuts and filled with red bean paste that my Mom had in her kitchen. They’re called ho-dah gwa-jah. Throughout the few days I was home, I would breeze into the kitchen, grab a couple of the ho-doh gwa-jah. Because I don’t particularly like sweet red bean paste (paht), I would tear open each cookie, scoop out the slimy, grainy filling with a tiny dessert spoon, smear it into a paper towel that I would throw away, and just eat the cake.

When my Mom came up to Berkeley to visit me, she brought a totebag full of the little walnut-shaped cookies that she had frozen, for travel (hers) and storage (mine). The craziest Korean ah-ju-Mom part of this was, of course, that she had special ordered the cookies from the bakery without the red bean filling. There were enough red bean-less cookies for three semesters. They lasted one, and I can no longer look at ho-doh gwa-jah without silently gagging.

I understand that while this “thing” is probably partly due to some sort of primal programming related to food storage for survival, I tell myself that she does it to show me how much she loves and cares about me, particularly with Korean food things because she still has it in her head that I can’t get Korean food (even though I live in LA). My Mom’s love has resulted in my hate of Jja-pa-ghetti. Chap-sahl dduk. Melona popsicles. Milton’s Multi-Grain Crackers (not Korean, but CostCo has those things in multi-multi-mega packs). Dried blueberries.

Hot dogs.

A few months ago, I told my Mom that my dog gobbles up hot dogs as if they were made of air. Two weeks later, after dinner in Orange County with my parents, I drove home with seven packs of hot dogs. Seh. Ven. She told me to freeze all but one, which Daisy could eat right away.

Happy National Hot Dog Month!

(The hot dog pictured above is a Chicago Dog that I ate at Portillo’s Hot Dogs in Chicago. It was interesting.)

Month-long Food Celebrations in July:

  • National Baked Bean Month
  • National Culinary Arts Month
  • National Grilling Month
  • National Hot Dog Month
  • National Ice Cream Month
  • National July Belongs To Berries Month
  • National Pickle Month
  • National Picnic Month

Week-long Celebrations in July:

  • 1st Week of July – National Canned Luncheon Meat Week
  • 4th Week of July – Don’t Eat Meat Week,  National Salad Week

July Food Holidays and Other Commemorative Days

  • July 1 – Creative Ice Cream Flavor Day
  • July 1 – National Gingersnap Day
  • July 2 – National Anisette Day
  • July 3 – National Chocolate Wafer Day
  • July 3 – Eat Beans Day
  • July 4 – Independence Day!
  • July 4 – National Barbecued Spareribs Day
  • July 4 – Caesar Salad Birthday
  • July 4 – Sidewalk Egg Frying Day
  • July 5 – National Apple Turnover Day
  • July 5 – Graham Cracker Day
  • July 6 – National Fried Chicken Day
  • July 7 – National Strawberry Sundae Day
  • July 7 – Chocolate Day
  • July 7 – Macaroni Day
  • July 7 – Ice Cream Cone Day
  • July 8 – National Milk Chocolate with Almonds Day
  • July 9 – National Sugar Cookie Day
  • July 10 – National Pina Colada Day
  • July 10 – Pick Blueberries Da
  • July 11 – National Blueberry Muffin Day
  • July 11 – Vegetarian Food Day
  • July 12 – National Pecan Pie Day
  • July 12 – National Blueberry Muffin Day (other sources say July 11)
  • July 12 – Eat Your Jello Day (Bill Cosby’s Birthday)
  • July 13 – National Ice Cream Day
  • July 13 – National French Fries Day
  • July 13 – Beans and Weenies Day
  • July 14 – Bastille Day!
  • July 14 – National Grand Marnier Day
  • July 15 – National Tapioca Pudding Day
  • July 15 – Gummi Worm Day
  • July 16 – National Corn Fritters Day
  • July 16 – Ice Cream Sundae Day
  • July 16 – Fresh Spinach Day
  • July 17 – National Peach Ice Cream Day
  • July 18 – National Caviar Day
  • July 19 – National Daiquiri Day
  • July 20 – National Hot Dog Day
  • July 20 – National Lollipop Day
  • July 20 – National Ice Cream Soda Day
  • July 20 – National Vanilla Milkshake Day
  • July 20 – Fortune Cookie Day
  • July 21 – National Junk Food Day
  • July 21 – National Ice Cream Day
  • July 22 – National Penuche Fudge Day
  • July 22 – Maple Syrup Day
  • July 23 – National Vanilla Ice Cream Day
  • July 24 – National Tequila Day
  • July 25 – National Hot Fudge Sundae Day
  • July 26 – National Coffee Milkshake Day
  • July 27 – National Scotch Day
  • July 27 – National Cream Brulee Day
  • July 28 – National Milk Chocolate Day
  • July 29 – National Lasagna Day
  • July 29 – Cheese Sacrifice Purchase Day (weird holidays)
  • July 30 – National Cheesecake Day
  • July 31 – National Raspberry Cake Day
  • July 31 – Cotton Candy Day
  • July 31 – Jump for Jelly Beans Day
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{ 7 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Kalyn July 19, 2009 at 3:47 pm

I think it’s just a mom thing. My mom used to do that sort of thing too. Just appreciate it, and enjoy!


2 Paige at The Spice House July 19, 2009 at 7:02 pm

Yay! I was so happy to see that your picture of a hot dog was a Chicago Hot Dog. Best kind ever! So much better than those pallid, soggy New York hot dogs. Enjoy your seven packs (or at least your dog will)!


3 Sarah J. Gim July 20, 2009 at 12:33 am

kalyn: but i’m not a mom, and weirdly enough, i do the same thing to my sisters.

paige: i like all the things on the Chicago hot dog, but I have to say, i really didn’t love the way the bun was prepared – i think the steaming just made it too soft, eventually turning it (like all white breads) into a thick, gluey paste. i always prefer a hot dog bun that’s been slathered over with butter then grilled, inside AND out. oh man, so good.


4 wotv July 20, 2009 at 1:29 pm

Where did you get this list? Very Impressive!


5 Sarah J. Gim July 20, 2009 at 1:34 pm

wotv: the list is a compilation of several lists and other websites that I found just by googling! just putting it all here in one, easy-to-read place!


6 Anne September 16, 2009 at 4:39 pm

I’m a few months late, but I visit your blog from time to time to check for any updates. I came across this post and laughed (mind you I’m not supposed to even be here since I’m at work…but that’s besides the point!).

My story is somewhat similar to yours and I think it’s a “mom thing” or maybe even an “Asian mom thing”. I go to school 7 hrs away from home and my mom tends to send care packages, so she has that whole “freezing-everything-in-sight-for-storage” down pretty well. I remember telling her I’ve been craving coconut rolls and egg tarts from the local bakery. Le and behold, within a few days I get this huge box saying “FRAGILE” on it and inside were pastries that could have lasted me the whole month.

I guess it’s her way of showing me that she’s glad I still need her :). Love your posts, keep it up!


7 daniel January 13, 2011 at 11:00 am

the best ice cream i have had has to be melona ice cream, I had some when I was stationed in korea and when I was stationed in hawaii, now im in alabama and i cant find any, so how can I get some here, who, do I have to order from?


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