#2 Teaching at Taizhou Teachers College-Fun With Food And More.....


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Asia » China » Jiangsu » Taizhou
February 25th 2006
Published: July 17th 2006
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Local Fruit VendorsLocal Fruit VendorsLocal Fruit Vendors

Fresh fruit is freely available at local stalls just outside the campus gates.
Food, one of my favourite topics! None more so than when I am travelling through, and in this case, living in, a new and exciting place.

Taizhou is located on the northern bank of the Yangtze River, about 3hours NW of Shanghai, one of the most fertile and productive regions of China. Consequently there are always lots of fresh ingredients available. The cuisine here is generally considered to be of the “Eastern School” although with the variety of fresh ingredients and condiments and the increasing mobility of China’s population, many styles of cooking are gaining popularity.

In my short time here I have been given the opportunity to try a wide variety of local dishes. Surprisingly, peanuts seem to be a very common ingredient, usually fried whole. They are not only used in appetizers but other dishes as well. Similarly, aubergine (eggplant) is also used widely in vegetable dishes. As was expected, there are a large variety of fresh leafy greens and tofu is used in many shapes and forms. Chicken, duck, fish (river) and shrimp are popular as well. My favourite so far is a spicy fish “hotpot”.

A typical day sees me eat a Western breakfast
Breakfast On The RunBreakfast On The RunBreakfast On The Run

As in the West, many people take their breakfast on the run. Local mobile vendors make sure there's plenty to eat and drink.
of fruit, yogurt, porridge/muesli or boiled egg and toast (I even found Australian butter at the local supermarket!), using the share kitchen facility at our hotel apartment. (I know, I’m a whimp!). At this stage I would rather keep the traditional Chinese breakfast of steamed buns, rice porridge, noodle soup and pickled vegetables for special occasions only!

Lunch is eaten early, about 11.30am, at the college staff canteen, where I have been provided with a “smart card”. There are usually about 10 or so dishes from which to choose and, of course, the ubiquitous boiled rice. Pointing, gesticulating and nodding or shaking the head vigorously seem to communicate what I want pretty effectively, at least until my Putonghua (Standard Chinese-Mandarin in the West) improves! Value of the meal is then deducted from my card. I am still very much a novelty, and am amused by the amount of interest there is in my skill with chopsticks! (Everyone is impressed!)

Even though I can eat in the staff canteen, I usually cook for myself in the evenings and at weekends - usually a stir-fry of some sort. Fresh food is freely available at nearby local fruit and vegetable stalls
Louise and Snoopy's Baozi BreakfastLouise and Snoopy's Baozi BreakfastLouise and Snoopy's Baozi Breakfast

Two of my charming second year English major students Wang Yue (Louise) and Sun Leilei (Snoopy) insist that "baozis" (steamed buns filled with pork) are the best way to start the day!
or at a variety of well stocked supermarkets. If I’m feeling lazy, I buy some hot/cold snacks from the mobile food vendors plying their trade in the streets surrounding the college campus. That is if I haven’t been invited as guest of honour to yet another fabulous banquet! (I will dedicate a whole blog to this wonderful experience)
I am not starving by any means!

I’ll let the pictures tell the story!




Additional photos below
Photos: 17, Displayed: 17


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Don't Forget Me!Don't Forget Me!
Don't Forget Me!

Louise and Snoopy are not the only ones who like baozi for breakfast!
More Breakfast TreatsMore Breakfast Treats
More Breakfast Treats

Taizhou residents love their snack food. There are a multitude of different vendors plying their wares in the morning and evening. This vendor is cooking up fried twisted dough sticks known as '"youtiao"
Favourite Vegie LadyFavourite Vegie Lady
Favourite Vegie Lady

This lady and her daughter (not in this picture) are among many friendly traders in a small open air market a minute or so walk from the campus.
Local ButcherLocal Butcher
Local Butcher

Another friendly smile from the open air butcher and his assistant
Fresh Corn Anyone?Fresh Corn Anyone?
Fresh Corn Anyone?

The local corn is almost white, a bit like the maize grown by Native Americans (if my memory serves me well!)
Famous BreakfastsFamous Breakfasts
Famous Breakfasts

The site of my first meal in China! Arthur took us all to breakfast in this establishment. They are famous for their breakfasts. They are also infamous as the most prolific fireworks users in Taizhou! (in my mind, anyway!)
Favourite EateryFavourite Eatery
Favourite Eatery

One of my personal favourites for the times when I don't feel like cooking for myself or eating at the staff canteen.
Preparing LunchPreparing Lunch
Preparing Lunch

Many of the small street eateries prepare and cook their food on a gas fire on the pavement. This young lady is washing and cooking small slices of liver used in a popular local dish.
Ego Is Not A Dirty Word!Ego Is Not A Dirty Word!
Ego Is Not A Dirty Word!

With acknowledgement to the Skyhooks song of the same name! Ego is a popular "mini- mart"/ convenience store just near the campus grounds.
Fresh is BestFresh is Best
Fresh is Best

When the local vendors do not have what you want, there's lots of fresh fruit from which to choose at the larger supermarkets such as Lotus, Century Mart and Times Extra.
Vital VeggiesVital Veggies
Vital Veggies

A variety of leafy greens just waiting to be eaten. I usually buy them fresh each afternoon from our local vendors, but the fresh food section of Lotus is a good "stand by"
Snack Anyone?Snack Anyone?
Snack Anyone?

Some of the many types of bulk snack foods available at Lotus. Goods must be weighed and priced at the weigh station before going to the checkout.
Catch of the DayCatch of the Day
Catch of the Day

Can't get fresher than this! There's also frogs, eels, snakes and tortoises up for grabs!
DelicaciesDelicacies
Delicacies

Chickens' feet and ducks' heads are considered to be delicacies.


17th July 2006

Bush Tucker
Hi Treadie, Well reminds me when I lived in Nigeria and we went bush ... until we found out that bush meat was roadkill !!! Where's ll the deepfried locusts, cockroaches etc like you get in Thailand ... or are you saving them all up for the hashers !!!
17th July 2006

Off to a greart start!
What a wonderful start to your exciting experience in your new abode. It's great to see your digs and by the look of the pics they are quite comfortable. It must be quite a challenge communicating though.......... knowing that you would have to wait for your every word to be interpreted. I wish I had your timetable at school - no playground duty either!! I am envious.
17th July 2006

Hi Treadie Great stuff, very interesting indeed, thing is, how are you going to top all this when you get back to the real world!! LOL Keep well and safe and enjoy, enjoy, enjoy! On On Soggy PS Think I will give the chicken feet a miss, I usually do in Thailand, and as for the duck heads, well ... you would not want an ugly one would you!!
18th July 2006

Wife
Bugger your trip Have you found me a wife yet LOL LOL Hope you are having a good time Love Argus
18th July 2006

OnOn Treadie, glad to hear from you. Sounds like your usual good vibe place - a taste of things to come. Will be hoping to catch up with you in Chang Mai - stay safe till then. onon
18th July 2006

Wow!!!
Hi Treadie, Good to hear from you through your blogs. What a wonderful experience you are having and we appreciate you sharing it with us. I am printing off your experiences and taking home to Dregs and Navigator as we haven't caught up with modern technology yet and thus don't have the net at home. But keep the blogs coming they are absolutely fascinating. On! On! Greasy
18th July 2006

Hi from Minnesota
Sue- I've just caught up with your blog postings- the photos are fabulous- looks like you are in for an interesting experience. I'm even starting to think about taking a course here to see if I might want to teach abroad in the next few years. It might be the only way to see some more of the world for me. I've been lax in reading my email lately, as I must check only from the office computer. Lightning hit a light pole close to my building and fried my modem. Luckily, my computer was on an expensive surge protector, and survived. I should get my home email back up and running this week. I've just applied for a travelling position with the Swim School, which has partnered with a nationwide fitness club chain. They'll be expanding to about 75 sites in a dozen states between now and the end of 2007. So, I might be seeing some new parts of the US, but probably won't get overseas anywhere for a while. Keep writing and sending pix. I love to see what you're up to. Debra
18th July 2006

It's just like being there with you!
Hi Sue, Thanks for sharing this great experience with us, although it would have been more "mystical" without the reality of duck heads (erk), live tortoises about to meet an awful fate, etc! Look forward to the next installment!
19th July 2006

Teaching English
Hi Treadie, good to hear that your still in a positive mode. You may have already seen this but anyway here are some tips: 21 Reasons the English Language is Hard to Learn 1. The bandage was wound around the wound. 2. The farm was used to produce produce. 3. The dump was so full it had to refuse more refuse. 4. We must polish the Polish furniture. 5. He could lead if he would get the lead out. 6. The soldier decided to desert his dessert in the desert. 7. Since there was no time like the present, he thought it was time to present the present. 8. A bass was painted on the head of the bass drum. 9. When shot at, the dove dove into the bushes. 10. I did not object to the object. 11. The insurance was invalid for the invalid. 12. There was a row among the oarsmen on how to row. 13. They were too close to the door to close it. 14. The buck does funny things when does are present. 15. A seamstress and a sewer fell down into a sewer line. 16. To help with planting, the farmer taught his sow to sow. 17. The wind was too strong to wind the sail. 18. After a number of injections my jaw got number. 19. Upon seeing the tear in the painting I shed a tear. 20. I had to subject the subject to a series of tests. 21. How can I intimate this to my most intimate friend?
20th July 2006

Hi from Bootie
Guday mate (Treadie), what no beef and black bean. Reading your journal is making me hungry so I might head down to the local chinese cafe. This Blog site is a great way to keep people informed of your exploits, Great photos keep them coming.
24th July 2006

Enjoy enjoy
Hi Treadie, the blogs are fantastic so keep it up. What a great way to share so much and to keep in touch. See you in Chiang Mai. Cheroot and Furment

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