Nourish Me is a collection of essays and cultural commentary on food, family, and the power of storytelling. It’s about all the things that nurture us, inside and out— written by Hoang Samuelson, a writer and storyteller based in Portland, Oregon. (More on me below).

In short, this is a place where I explore the big, existential questions that linger in my mind. Chances are, you’re probably wondering the same thing! So join me.

Some people have recipes, I have stories.

What you can expect

I’m all about the F’s. As a subscriber, you’ll receive a compelling essay every other Saturday at 8 a.m. on one of these topic:

Food

I love talking about food, looking at food, eating, baking, etc. but you won’t find too many recipes here. Instead, what you’ll find is thoughtfully constructed essays about issues surrounding food. Not even issues, really, but more like things we need to think about regarding the food we eat, such as how food gets to our table, the people who make food, the systems of food production and distribution, and so forth.

Family

The way that we define family has changed dramatically since I was born. (I’m an mid-80s baby, so you can guess how old I am…) It can be the people that you grew up with, or it can be the people you choose or who choose you. I’m fascinated with the changing narratives of family. Here, I explore what ‘family’ means in the 21st century and how people define the communities they choose to be in as their family and how to make it work for them.

Feelings

Vague, I know, but what I mean is the things we feel about ourselves and our world. Psychology-related, if you will. I’ve written about my feelings on leaving my job/comparison, feelings on ambition/learning, on love/friendship. Sometimes just feelings.

First book/Commentary/Reviews

I’m very vocal about the fact that I’m working on my first book. This is where I talk about my progress, give you excerpts, ask for your feedback, etc. Sometimes I’ll provide a book review or an essay, which will most likely involve food. Sometimes I’ll include include some commentary about what it’s like to be a modern (Asian) person in America and how the definition of ‘immigrant’ and ‘citizen’ is changing as we speak.

Me at Hearst Castle, pre-pandemic.

I’m Hoang Samuelson, a food and culture writer based in Portland, Oregon. I was born in Vietnam and lived in a small village about thirty minutes away from Saigon until I was ten, when I came to America. I’ve been in Portland ever since.

Currently, I’m working on a novel (my first!) about the Vietnam War, based on my parents’ youth. I’ve been published in several outlets including Food52, The Kitchn, The Takeout, Catapult and Roxane Gay’s The Audacity newsletter. You can find more of my work here.

Here’s what people have said about my writing….

“Your newsletter is one of the few I read immediately when it comes to my inbox. You have such beautiful writing and the subjects you deal with are compelling.” - Marjorie N.

“You write beautifully about some very poignant topics. I look forward to your pieces.” - Deb B.

“I loved reading this post. A street that is not just a roadway but a journey that continues. Beautiful.” - Elizabeth M.

“Thanks for sharing this beautiful essay, inspiring!” - David T.

You can also find me Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram. Come say hi!

I’m also a regular columnist for BooknBrunch, The Kitchn, and The Takeout.