Real Chinese Food

I haven’t blogged in a long, looooooong time.  Well, there are just some things that you have to blog about.  I’ve been out of the country twice in the past two months, both of which were quite unexpected.  One was a business trip to Beijing, while another was for a family event in Kuala Lumpur.  Made me realize too that I might want to put up a blog entry for travelling.  Oh well, maybe later.  For now, my trip to Beijing.

Now, before I go any further, let me tell you a brief background.  I grew up in a chinese family, and I love chinese food.  My parents have been to China twice and they told me of how good the food was there.  I am used to traditional chinese 8-course meals during weddings and big celebrations, but the parents were right as usual, nothing beats the chinese food in China.

I won’t post about everything that we ate in Beijing.  Suffice it to say that we did get to experience different things, such as a hotpot dinner, and a dimsum lunch.  The hotpot isn’t like what we have in Manila, where you have a big pot of soup over a flame.  Their pot is like what you see in the old 老夫子 comic books, where the flames (coals?) are inside a thin vase which is inside the bigger and wider soup pot.  Cool, eh?

The highlight was the dinner that we had on a Friday night after a day trip to the neighboring province of Tianjin.  It was my first dinner there (I arrived the day before at past 10PM), and our hosts for the day decided that it was the perfect time to try the Beijing Duck. Oh, and I should not forget to mention that we went to Beijing on the first week of March, where the weather was still cruel enough to reach -6degreesC.  Yes, negative.  For someone who lives in hot and humid Manila, that is an insanely cold temperature.  Bring on the hot food!

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Since the restaurant that we went to specializes in Beijing Duck (more commonly known as Peking Duck here in the Philippines), it wasn’t surprising that they had a lot of other dishes related to the duck.  On the picture for example, there’s duck liver and other innards.  They serve it pretty much like they do in Manila — carved into thin slices which you can wrap around a thin mandarin pancakes with some leeks and hoisin sauce.  However, the taste of the Beijing Duck is really superior compared to what we have here in Manila.  Nothing beats the original!  Juicy, tender meat with crispy skin.  Heavenly.  Crunchy, fresh vegetables.  Warm wraps.  Just writing about it makes me hungry again.

Now, as a general rule, with food at least, you gotta try everything once.  My exception here is for spicy food, because I can no longer taste it if it’s too spicy!  Well, maybe not for chili crab, haha.  So now, I bring you… the scorpion!

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I had two of those.  They’re crunchy and tasteless.  I ate them just for adventure’s sake.  I’m glad I did.  Something to be proud of.  Like I said, try everything once. 😀

Here are some other pictures.  Great memories.  Here’s the picture of the Beijing Duck being carved before serving.  Nice to see that I got the special beer in the picture too.  🙂

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The veggies and hoisin sauce that goes with the Beijing Duck.

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This is the hotpot I mentioned earlier.  Pretty fancy, ain’t it?

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Some of the ingredients that went into the hotpot.  I failed to get a picture of the lotus root, which I had tried for the first time.   There was shrimp cake too.

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The weird part was the garlic.  This was served as an appetizer.  Yes, I tried it once. 🙂

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Something I noticed though.  Wherever we went, the veggies seemed so fresh.  I love veggies so that part was a real treat for me.  I ate so much yet lost some weight!  Can’t beat that! 🙂

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