202. Building Cambodian Community w/ Sherry Kong

Asian in Austin

Sep 5 2023 • 59 mins

Sherry Kong is the co-founder of Mama Kong, a nomadic kitchen cooking up Cambodian food with her husband, Brandon since 2017. Her family immigrated to Austin in 1982 after fleeing the war in Cambodia. After teaching in Japan and New York’s Chinatown, she nad her husband decided to reset the button on life, move back home and introduce Austinites to Cambodian food. She trained and cooked with her mom every week until she mastered  the recipes she grew up eating. You can find them at pop-ups, festivals and organizing private dinners / supper clubs. They're constantly introducing people to Cambodian food and exploring ways to curate special connections that revolve around deliciousness, positivity and shared experiences.

Topics covered:

•  Her family owning a donut shop in Round Rock and Cambodian's relationships to Donut Shops in the U.S.
•  Learning recipes with her mom and sharing what makes Cambodian cuisine unique from other Asian cuisines.
•  Curating the first menu for Mama Kong Cambodia's first pop up and the menus that follow.
•  Perspectives on owning a brick and mortar location.
•  Running Mama Kong with her husband, their strengths and weaknesses, and importance of allyship.
Early memories of the Austin Cambodian Community and their reception to Mama Kong
•  The differences between our parents generation vs our generation's relationship to eating out
•  Future aspirations with Mama Kong, perspectives on owning a brick and mortar and what success looks like.

Referenced materials in this episode:

Mama Kong Cambodian Website ; Instagram
The Donut King Documentary
Emma Long Metro Park
Tan My Restaurant, Din Ho Chinese BBQ Restaurant

Music from #Uppbeat (free for Creators!):
https://uppbeat.io/t/mountaineer/anatolia
License code: CTKXYDZ8R9QDK4F8

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