I kept seeing these green things by the counter in the YouEasy stores, and eventually my curiosity got the better of me. A quick google search says they’re made from squeezed wormwood and glutinous rice with a red bean paste filling. (Though there are other varieties). They have a fairly inoffensive mild flavour, but it’s a bit like eating chewy playdough so I’d hesitate to recommend them.
According to our Chinese teacher they’re always sold around the Qingming holiday. Qingming is a spring festival here – some people translate it as “tomb sweeping day” However by the look of West Lake, which was completely rammed, it’s just another bank holiday where the 8.7million people living in Hangzhou all decide to squeeze their way onto the Su causeway. Mei banfa.
I have generally found that when you tell someone about your plans to move to China the following conversation will contain at least one concerned comment about the cuisine. “Real Chinese food isn’t the same as a Chinese takeaway y’know!” (Well, yes, I should hope not if my local in London is anything to go by.) So as a result of all this unfounded fear, I decided I would write a blog about all our foody adventures in Hangzhou, from the local street food to swanky restaurant meals, enjoy!... full info