Tag Archives: Chinese food

What my father saw in China

Back in 2016 we had a holiday in China and we had invited my father to join us. What I remember most from that trip is the incredible and annoying City Tour Extreme. As there was just so much to write about I split the adventure into four parts: Day 1, Day 2, Day 3 and Day 4. Besides that city tour we experienced the standard MIL madness/ the whole crazy family. Why am I writing about it now? Today I went through my dad’s camera and found the pictures he took last year. Okay that is until the battery was empty on Day 2 of the city tour and he had forgotten to take the proper charging cable with him.

Going to some temple in Xi’an

My father has a different viewpoint when it comes to taking pictures. First of all he is still used to the time before digital cameras swarmed the market so he barely takes more pictures than would fit on an old film (max 36 pictures depending on the film). Secondly he is not wasting as much times as me on taking pictures as he is not aiming for the perfect shot but to have just some “memory” of the trip. Besides those two points he did not take any pictures in Xi’an except from the city wall and from some temple. I think this is because he has been everywhere before back in 2011 so he did not deem those other places worthy of using any space on his SD-Card again in 2016.

The “Old Old city Wall” within/ under the “Old City Wall” in Xi’an

On our city tour extreme I am not sure who was more annoyed by all the misplanning. I mean I was really annoyed but my dad was really really annoyed, especially when our tour guide “The Howling Monkey” did not even let us sleep in the bus after waking up each morning way too early. He even took a picture of the tour guide in order to never forget that person again. He also got rather annoyed by MIL’s behaviour as it was first time he really witnessed all her crazy doings over the span of three weeks. In fact he is right now thinking how he can survive her again next year when we go to China as we will take my father with us once again!

The Howling Monkey in pink, one of my father’s Archenemies

What is really surprising me is that my father actually has still the energy to do such trips with us as he just turned 76 this year. Especially those long flights are hard on him besides trying each day new unknown food in China. Despite having sometimes really many problems in China back in 2016 he still agreed to come with us instantly after we asked him to join us. My mother on the other hand had the same reply as last time “No way I will ever go there again!”.

An ocean of flowers at the Slender West Lake in Yangzhou

Going through the pictures I wondered sometimes on how different they were compared to the ones I took. Sure I took a lot more than him but some places I did not recognize at all or had forgotten as I never captured them with my camera. At times it is really interesting to see how two people can have so very different pictures when visiting the same places. Next time I will make sure that he has his charging cable and I will try to motivate him to take more pictures.

Have you ever checked pictures of another person (friend, spouse, family member) after you went on the same trip somewhere?

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My food is much Better

Dear Chinese mother-in-law is honoring us currently with her presence and thanks to that I have no shortage of stories to share with you. Originally I had something else planned for today but this blog is like a therapy for me and I really need to get this out. You have read it probably too often already but my MIL is certainly something else. She knows everything better than anyone else and she does everything better than anyone else, at least that is how she sees the world. The reality is very much different but she would never accept that.

Just look at this delicious food!

Before coming to Germany my wife gave her mother a little food shopping list. To be precise this shopping list was all about Liangpi 凉皮 the best noodle dish ever created. There are specialized restaurants in Xi’an which offer these noodles in a box to take away and mix the noodles and sauce yourself. You should consume the food within two weeks otherwise it might be not that good for you any longer but two weeks are more than enough. When we were last time in China we brought home 16 boxes for just the two of us. I think they didn’t even last a week and I don’t even feel bad about it as they are just too delicious. When MIL heard that she should buy them for us her first reaction was “They don’t taste at all, they are terrible, I don’t buy them!” (She has never tried them before). Her second reaction was “They are too heavy, I don’t buy them!” (She wanted to take more of her weird stuff with). However my wife insisted that MIL would get them and her third reaction was “My homemade ones are much better!”. In the end my wife won and MIL took at least a few boxes with to Germany.

And even more of that, I am so hungry now

Now coming back to “My homemade ones are much better” I have to say that her Liangpi ain’t bad.  They are actually pretty good as soon as you add some salt and spices (something she never does, she never uses salt for anything). But they are still no match for the takeaway Liangpi yet alone to the freshly made ones in certain restaurants. My mother-in-law believes that her food is so much better than in any restaurant. Last year she tried to proof that to me and my dad when we were in China by making Pizza for us. She had never made pizza before and had no clue what to add. She even tried to put in Durians and Bananas, thankfully my wife stopped her from that. I can’t remember the taste but I do know that my stomach was upset for the next two days.

Our kitchen looks a bit different now with MIL being here

MIL is preparing food for us now every day, same as she had done during the past visits over the years. While her noodle dishes are rather good, the other dishes are barely eatable. Whenever she made some dishes to be eaten with rice I prepared myself for the worst. The good thing is that my wife concvinced her mother to make noodle related dishes at least five times a week. No matter how much my wife complains about the cooking skills her mother still believes she is the best chef who has ever walked this (round) earth (MIL kind of believes that the earth is flat). In fact MIL does not even like most of the food she prepares but she won’t admit to it but we can clearly see it when she suddenly stops eating after one or two bites. Her explanation for that is usually that she doesn’t want to eat too much so that we have more, yeah right.

How are your cooking skills?

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The Love for Food

There are many reasons why I love to travel to China as I have already written once down in this post from last year. There I briefly mentioned food and my favorite restaurants. By going through my pictures from the past years I realized that the food part fell a bit short in that post so I decided to make up for it now. I know that I might bring the wrath of some people now upon me by sharing those pictures but I just can’t help it.

food7
Nom nom nom

Chinese consider their food to be the crème de la crème of all the world and to be honest I mostly agree with that. Mostly? Because there is always some other food which is great as well (but not in the eyes of my wife and her family…prefering to eat in some run down Chinese restaurant in Germany rather than trying some local specialities, but that is again another story). I only need to mention 小五 xiao wu/ little five in front of my wife to receive death stares from her as xiao wu is the name of our favorite little restaurant in China just 2 minutes walking distance away from her parents home. Let me just tell you that it is surely one of the best foods I have ever tried and also far far away from our current location in Germany hence the death stares. Xi’an, as any other city in China, has tons of food to offer.

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More nom nom nom

Let’s take biangbiang Biang (简体).svgBiang (简体).svg noodles as an example. Not only do they have the supposedly most complicated character but they do also taste superb. Then there are various cold noodle dishes liangpi 凉皮 of which I sometimes even dream of and then of course rou jia mo 肉夹馍 the mouth-watering “meat bread” you can find at so many places around the city. Whenever my in-laws are taking us to a new restaurant I am all hyped, not only because it surely will lead to another weird story due to MIL’s unreasonable character but also because I can experience new food once again. Of course I sometimes face food which I am not the biggest fan of right after the first bite but usually it is something amazing again.

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Have I mentioned nom nom nom already?

One risk though when it comes to going out to eat with my in-laws is that I might end up with way too much food. They know that I love noodle dishes, particularly cold noodle dishes and also rou jia mo. Sounds great at first but when you do suddenly get two rou jia mo, one cold noodle dish and then some other dish it is a bit much for me. This certain flood of food I received when going to a restaurant in the city center famous for these foods. Well, I managed to eat it all but didn’t feel all too well afterwards for the rest of the day. Speaking of over eating. It is so dangerous with dear crazy mother-in-law as she piles up food non-stop on my plate and thus I learned to wait and see where she is sitting so I can find the seat farthest away from her. The thing is, even though my in-laws always order way too much it is never enough in the end. FIL can eat much, way to much for a guy his size. To put it in other words: he eats about triple the amount of food than me which equals pretty much half his body weight in my estimations. I better come now to the rest of the pictures before I start some more rants about my crazy Chinese family.

Do you have places you love to visit due to the food?

Be sure to follow me also on Facebook and on Twitter as I will post there occasionally pictures which do not find their way into my blog posts. Furthermore I also have a YouTube Channel in which some videos might pop up from time to time

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https://www.youtube.com/