I have come to realize that Chinese cuisine has so many wild,wonderful, crazy and delicious foods to try, that it just might take you a lifetime to taste them all.
I am a bit late getting on this taste testing journey but I recently screwed up enough courage to try, what a CNN poll recently rated as “one of the world’s most horrible foods”, the Chinese Century Egg or 100 year old egg or 1000 year old egg, depending which laowai description you happen to read. The Chinese simply refer to it as a pí dàn and as you can imagine, they don’t think it is horrible at all.
The Century egg is a preserved egg, usually a duck egg, that is coated with mixture of clay,ash,lime,salt and rice hulls and then left for a couple of weeks to a couple of months. What results is a translucent egg that is the color of a black opal with a greenish , greyish yolk. Yum !
The best way to eat this Chinese delicacy is sprinkled with salt or Sirachi sauce ( a spicy southeast Asian sauce). Unfortunately I didn’t learn this part of the procedure until after I had eaten my egg.
In any case I did eat it ( although I had to close my eyes on the first bite) and I was pleasantly surprised. The custard-creamy like texture gets you first, followed by an emerging aftertaste that I can only imagine is mitigated by the toppings mentioned. The aftertaste wasn’t really unpleasant but it did have a hint of a sulfur flavor.
It is definitely worth a try.
Eat Well Shanghai on the Road
EWS will be at the Shanghai American School in Puxi on Wednesday ( September 7th) this week from 10 am-2 pm.
EWS will be at the Shanghai Expatriate Association’s monthly coffee on Monday, September 12th at the JC Mandarin.
Come on by to say hello and pick up a copy of the EWS Guidebook .
Don’t forget the Jiashan Farmers Market this Saturday at the Jiashan Market. Plenty of great food vendors but alas no 100 year old eggs!
Eat Well, Live Well, Have Fun !