Chinese food….. oh to go back

Back in 2013 I went to China.  There I lived and worked for 6 weeks…. and more importantly, ATE.

Oh how I would go back just for the food.

It should be re-inforced that as a vegetarian travelling isn’t always easy.  Samoa meant that basically I ate a lot of fresh fruit.  New Caledonia and France meant translating menu items.  London, well… that was a dream…. so many vegetarian and ethnic food options.

However, China was amazing.  I was mainly in Northern China, in Jilin, up in Changchun…. in winter.  I was blown away by large scale horticultural greenhouses and the food.  SUCH GOOD FOOD.  Meat was popular, but never the main ingredient of a meal.  I expected a lot of rice and noodles.  I was wrong to suspect.  The food was so much better.

Anyway, last week I was in Wellington, and decided to take the students I was with to a Dumpling making workshop, as I was enamored with dumplings.  So tasty.  The take away for me was that essentially while I had made dumplings before, I was putting too many ingredients in the dough, not using boiling water, and overfilling the damn things.

Also, I had forgotten to absolutely season the ingredients.

Essentially Chinese food is all about fresh, flavour, and seasons.  Did I mention flavour?

So last Sunday I made peanut and cabbage dumplings.  Thursday I did Beef and Cabbage, and Leek and Egg.  Today I am going for a cashew and cabbage.  (I love cabbage).


All this has meant a revival in trying to find good recipes for the flavours I had in China.  And a desire to make the laobing pancakes, with their potato and eggy fillings.  Such good food.  So light and filling.  Perfect lunch food in my mind.

Steamed leek and egg.  I prefer them fried.

Steamed leek and egg. I prefer them fried.


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