Follow the Yangze

We boldly march onward through this puzzling country, heading due East from Shànghǎi out to Wǔhàn before boating along the longest river in the world. Here's a few grub-able images from the passage into the heart of Yangtze River Delta- an area responsible for 20% of China's GDP. All aboard.

I told you they get more curious. He's enjoying a mid-day flask of báijiǔ with his meal- nothing wrong with that. The man looks vigorous and healthy. Let him be.

In Wǔhàn the like to morning snack on a dish called 熱乾麵 { Re gan mian: Hot Dry noodles }. Each vendor will throw a lil' something different into their cup, but order up expecting some sesame paste, soy and spiciness. Pickled veggies and peanuts make cameos as well.

Little cozy spots like this are all over if you sniff enough. I've been known to sniff. Usually turns out okay for me. One thing I found interesting with many Chinese noodle dishes is that they contain very little or no meat whatsoever. Just a grip of noodles with a spicy/salty sauce. I guess I'm partial to Vietnamese noodle dishes where they throw they whole farm and garden in the bowl. We'll see what else I can uncover.

One of the highlights of our trip was the 32 hour ferry we took along the Yangtze river. Just 300 Chinese and the two of us, with our hairy arms and high noses. Enjoyable times. Nothing gourmet about the meals on this vessel. Boiled cabbage, soybeans and slices of pork fat over rice. I would've likened it to prison food, but then I read Damage Done. Just can't complain anymore.

Back on solid ground they can hit the wok with style and grace, leading to some satisfying results. It's all about 鑊氣 { wok hei } which is a term to describe the flavor, texture and caramelizing effects provided by screaming hot metal. If you can differentiate between a plate of fried noodles cooked on a Teflon pan at home vs. a restaurant wok at 100,000+ B.T.U. then you're familiar with the power of the wok's breath. If not, get acquainted quick.

Or if ya don't fancy a stir-fry you can always fry the brains outta the poor bastard. Here's a couple Yangtze river fish we picked out. My boy cooked them up with a dandy lil' black bean sauce [?] for us. 20 Y [$3] for the pair.

7 A.M. in China.
Ever dipped your Krispy Kreme in cappuccino? The Chinese dip crispy featherweight 油條 { yóu tiáo - 'oil stick' } in fresh, warm soy milk.

Next up we'll concentrate on Sìchuān specialties. Bring the fire hydrant. Leave the kiddies.

Stay 2O1O World Champs.


Ana Powell said...

Nice to hear from you.
I can see you are having plenty of fun.
Take care ♥

Mai said...

No meat in noodle?! I'm not going to China then :))

Reima said...

Isn't the Yangtze the longest river in the world AFTER the Nile and BEAUTIFUL BEAUTIFUL AMAZON! :) Thought I'd add that!


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