Food tales from China
Posted: 06 June 2010 07:49 PM   [ Ignore ]
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So…. Since I can’t bake on my China trip I thought I’d share some food related pics…

The steamed dumplings are Shanghai Soup Dumplings. Unbelievably light dough, half the thickness any of any other dumpling I’ve ever had. Filled with pork (or pork and shrimps or crab or whatever other combinations) and soup, they are a burst of flavor when you bite them open, kind of like a wonton soup developing in your mouth. Had to stand in line for 30 minutes, outside, in the sun, in 85 degrees heat, but it was soooo worth it!

The next is a night market in Beijing, though it seemed fairly touristy. It was super clean, and not really very bustling even though it was a Saturday evening. But very interesting to watch.

Yesterday I took a cooking class (to cure my cooking withdrawals…). We made dumplings - very fun. The main thing I learned was how to roll out the dough - rather than rolling out a big chunk of dough and then cutting the dumpling skins you take little bits of dough, press them flat with your hand, and then have a small rolling pin that you continuously roll onto the dough, to about the middle, with your right hand, while moving the dough around in small increments to create a round dumpling skin. After the first 10 we all got pretty proficient with it, and a dumpling from start to finish probably took 1 minute or less.

The last pic is of where I had dinner, and what I love China for. I went into a side street, and one of the restaurants had tables out. The menu had pictures - very helpful - and I had a wonderful watermelon radish salad, stir fried large chiles similar to Pasilla, and 3 sticks of mystery meat kebabs plus 2 bottles of beer (no, I’m not an alcoholic, the beer is really thin here, about 3% if you’re lucky) and plenty of entertaining street scenery for a whooping $4.50. And it was very yummy!

I’ll put together a blogpost on the cooking class when I’m back in the free world, unfortunately blogspot is censored here and I can’t get on it…

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Posted: 06 June 2010 08:54 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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This is so interesting! Thank you for sharing your pics and experiences with us. I hope you post again with more food stores and photos.
Blogspot is censored? It really makes me feel grateful for our freedoms of expression.

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Posted: 06 June 2010 10:31 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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Yum! I had some handmade dumplings when I was in London’s Chinatown a few weeks ago. I was mesmerized by the Chinese woman making them in the window, and I just had to try some. They were fantastic. I can’t wait to go to China and try them there. Thank you for sharing.

I second Katheen’s gratitude for the freedom of expression we have here in the West.

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Posted: 07 June 2010 08:06 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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Silke, So thrilled to see your pictures and read your commentary about your adventures in China. Hope that we get to see and read more soon.

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Posted: 07 June 2010 10:58 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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Sounds like a fun visit. Looking forward to reading your blog.

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Posted: 07 June 2010 12:09 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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Great pics and notes, I enjoyed reading them! 

OK, perhaps I’m asking for a lot, but if you were motivated to do a little video of rolling the dough and making dumplings, I would be eternally grateful and you would forever more occupy a special place in my heart as the person who taught me to make dumplings.  smile

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Posted: 07 June 2010 12:32 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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How wonderful! Thanks for posting this.  The 2nd pic dumplings look huge!  Are they really big?  They look like 4-biters, but I suspect they’re really small single-biters!
Your hand-rolled dumpling is a thing of beauty!  How did you fill them?
I love the last pic—I love the trees at the back.  Are there a lot of trees downtown there?
Thanks for the food tales!

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Posted: 07 June 2010 12:42 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
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Very nice Silke. And your handmade dumpling looks perfect. Thanks for sharing the pics.

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Posted: 07 June 2010 10:21 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]
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Have a great time!  Looks like you’re having fun already - can’t wait for the next installment! smile

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Posted: 08 June 2010 02:03 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 9 ]
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Oh, thank you for sharing.  I do love visiting markets in other countries and seeing all the different foods and ingredients.  How wonderful you had an opportunity to a little cooking.

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So many recipes - so little time.

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Posted: 10 June 2010 02:32 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 10 ]
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Those are amazing pictures. Thank you for posting them. 

Your pictures have made me so hungry   tongue wink

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Posted: 10 June 2010 01:47 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 11 ]
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Hi all, made it safely back to the free world, and thanks for all the comments. I’ll try to put the blog up later today.

Julie - the video is a great idea since it’s next to impossible to describe it just with words and pics. I got home yesterday and made them for dinner. I have a little more filling left, so I’ll make some more dough and have my hubby document the making of the dumplings tonight grin

Anne, the dumplings are usually two biters, at least for me. The soup dumplings were bigger than the ones we made, so it’s just the perspective of the pics.

Attached is a pic showing the dumplings I made yesterday.

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Posted: 11 June 2010 06:20 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 12 ]
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Ok, the dumpling method plus video are up on my blog at http://quartercow.blogspot.com/2010/06/dumpling-class-in-one-of-beijings.html

Enjoy!

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Posted: 11 June 2010 11:42 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 13 ]
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grin Yipee!

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