From Yunnan to Korean Eateries

I swear the more I write this blog, the more it becomes less and less about my PhD, curatorial and academic research interests and more about food…all that I am consuming in China…it is now a consumption blog (perhaps). I do have an academic heavy post on it’s way…beware! Last Saturday evening, after a very exhausting experience of going to the fabric market to collect tailored clothing (not mine)…Lisa, Barry and I went for Yunnan cuisine at ‘Lotus Eatery’…a local and very cosy restaurant in the West of Shanghai. It was perfect for me as they had a plethora of tofu dishes to choose from, and this great goats cheese platter (fourth image down). This place seemed to have a philosophical sense at heart…although that quickly got thrown out this window as we all got frustrated by the fact that they’d given our table away to someone else even though we weren’t late, and that people in there just would not stop smoking. There is nothing worse than people smoking whilst you eat. Yunnan food has a particular bite to it…a different set of herbs, spices and tastes…it intrigued me about how the chillies were kept in huge bags outside, and a little concerning. A real treat for the senses and I’ve decided I like it a lot more than Sichuan food but less than Korean…hmmmm maybe. I’m not sure about that comparison as they are very different. I made a decision too that there needs to be more photos of me on this thing…I have this fear that I will come back from China with no photographs of myself experiencing China…then what will I show my future kids? If I have kids.

Another working lunch, another visit to the Korean restaurant I like. I like it even more now as I tried the pumpkin porridge, known as nan gua zhou 南瓜粥. It was amazing stuff, so much so I bought three portions for the freezer at home. I sat at a different table this time and was confronted by my name on the wall, obviously my surname isn’t ‘Zhu’ but it made me smile as I chewed on sushi. Everyday, a local chef and coffee shop owner brings in lunches and food for the AIVA office staff. He makes this great little cookies, usually with salted almonds, however earlier in the week he experimented with black tea and raisins. Super lovely afternoon treats. I have no idea what his Chinese name is (which is ignorant of me considering how often I see him) but his English one is “ren 人” quite literally meaning “person”…so we call him “the person”. Random right? Chinese people’s English name choices are very interesting sometimes…perhaps I should do a blog post about that next?

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