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Chinese Food

Travel Forums Off Topic Chinese Food

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1. Posted by chayisun (Budding Member 163 posts) 7y

I love Chinese food. See, my Wife is from Taiwan and is an excellent cook. We eat a lot of Chinese food. I really enjoy it.

That said, we were recently in Taiwan visiting Sue's family. I had a great time and I got lots of Chinese food. Now, the Chinese food they cook in Taiwan is, I discovered, different then the Chinese food Sue cooks at home...At home the Chinese food she cooks , as she eventually told me, is prepared with the Western palate in mind. I didn't know that...

Anyway, dinner in Taiwan is an everyday event. Neighbours, family, everyone is invited.

They were all Taiwanese. And there was me.

Fortunately I can speak some Mandarin, such as "Pass the food this way"....I learned that early because I didn't want to starve....And "thank you", which is important.

I should have learned how to ask "What is this?"....I didn't. I eat everything given to me.

One item we had was something called tripe. I thought it was fish. It isn't. It was chewy...

"Sue, what's this stuff.."

"It's tripe."

"Oh. Is it an ocean fish?"

"No. Actually, it's not fish."

"Oh. Well, if it's not fish, what is it.."

"Don't worry. It's good for you."

Now, when Sue says that I get suspicious. It's like when she tells me brocolli is good for me. I hate brocolli but she always gives it to me 'cause it's good for me. If it's good for me why isn't chocolate good for me. I love chocolate and, of course, Sue tells me too much is not good for me.....But that's another story..

Anyway, since Sue wouldn't tell me what tripe was I asked her sister.

Sue's sister told me. I wish she hadn't. It's cow stomach.

This is something they eat. Cow stomach. Tripe. Oh joy.....

After the meal I didn't ask what else we had eaten.....However, apparently, I also had turkey parts which I won't describe.......

2. Posted by loubylou (Travel Guru 664 posts) 7y

I can sympathise with you there...I suddenly had a realisation when we were in China that I had been in Asia too long when I was all too willing to nibble the flesh off a steamed chickens foot.

Sometimes you've just got to roll with it and eat what's in front of you without thinking too much.

We came up with an idea when we go home to serve our family a 'typical' Asian dish full of tripe, chicken's feet and maybe a chicken's head thrown in too for good measure and pretend that it's all we eat now! I can imagine the look on their faces would be similar to your look when you found out you were eating tripe!

3. Posted by tway (Travel Guru 7273 posts) 7y

Oh, tripa! The Italians love it. They make pasta sauce out of it. Gark!

4. Posted by magykal1 (Travel Guru 2026 posts) 7y

I think sometimes in China its really is best not to ask, I've had pefectly enjoyable 'snacks' that I'm sure were some kind of weird offal.

I've had tripe a few times, but I've never acquired the taste. I ate a plateful in Italy once through sheer politeness.

5. Posted by bwiiian (Travel Guru 768 posts) 7y

Tripe?? Pah!!! Thats just for starters, you want to get yourself eating some Balut, now that is some real man's food!!!!!

6. Posted by soupatrvlr (Respected Member 385 posts) 7y

Ah, chicken's feet. In Africa you buy it by the kilo at the butcher's. Just big mounds of them waiting for you just behind the glass at the counter. And lots of stomachs. And livers. And kidneys. Right there next to my Texas steak.

Here in Pennsylvania & the Mid-Atlantic, we have a lovely delicacy called Scrapple. To those of you unfamiliar with the delights of scrapple, let me enlighten you. They take all the leftover scraps of pork from the processing plant, called hog offal. The head, the heart, the liver & any other scraps. They boil it all down to make a broth. Then, they skim off all the crap, get rid of the bones & set aside the meat. They mix the broth with cornmeal & buckwheat flour to make a mush & then add the minced meat back in with other seasonings. These are formed into loafs, or the those long circle tubes the butchers love to make for lunch meat. I think you have to be born in Central PA to thoroughly appreciate the wonder of this dish. My mother is from Pittsburgh, but won't touch it. My Dad, from Harrisburg, thinks its as normal as sliced bread. My uncle, as from Central PA, always has me bring some to him when I visit all the way up in New York City. Secretly, I think he has an entire deep freeze in the basement filled with all the scrapple we bring, because he can no longer get himself to eat it!

7. Posted by baluba (Respected Member 407 posts) 7y

In England we call this 'Sausages', in Scotland.. 'Haggis'. In England this 'stuff' is piped into intestines, in Scotland, into a sheeps stomach. Both equaly delicious but in Scotland it is accompanied by Whisky, which makes it even better!

8. Posted by chayisun (Budding Member 163 posts) 7y

Thanks to all those who posted the various food items, particularly the balut, which I foolishly looked up and then threw up, I think I'm going to go vegetarian.

I mean what could possibly be bad about vegetables......

9. Posted by Odysseas (Full Member 1359 posts) 7y

Hum, I don't mean to disapoint you, but you do know that broccolis are a vegetables, don't you?

10. Posted by tway (Travel Guru 7273 posts) 7y

Quoting chayisun

I mean what could possibly be bad about vegetables......

Um...