Ancient Chinese Secret Explained-Pt.2

Yes Ketchup is the secret! Now let me explain…

A few weeks ago I took a Chinese cooking class and tour of the wet market. Cathy is claiming she won, but she cheated and took the chef’s bowl AND sabotaged mine by pouring extra rice wine in my bowl when she poured 1/4 cup instead of the required 2 drops…

Regardless of the outcome we had a great time and thought about taking another class. This week our small group of 4 grew to 10 and we tried it again. We broke into groups this time and each group made something different and then we all ate our creations. The menu included dumplings, Chinese eggplant, string beans, sweet and sour chicken and the Kongbao chicken we made before.

I must say I don’t think I will eat those kind of dumplings again… the mix did not only include meat, but fat and skin ground to a jelly like consistency that at first glance looked like a bowl of rice. They did taste delicious and not having dinner before we came I did eat a few…

My job was to make the fried rice… and I must say it turned out really good. The eggplant was flavourful in a spicy sauce, but a bit too oily for my taste. The big secret was revealed when John and 2 other teachers from school were making the sweet and sour chicken. This was the closest thing I have seen that looks like North American Chinese food… they diced the chicken and rolled it  cornstarch and then cooked it in a wok with oil until it was almost done. They drained off the oils and cooked the pineapple and red and green peppers. Next came the secret ingredient to make the red sweet and sour sauce… the ketchup. Sweet & Sour ChickenGasps could be heard all around the kitchen as we learned the secret and the chef calmly explained that is the sweet… who knew that the sauce was made from ketchup… here we all thought it was some difficult process or something that would come from a jar to save us time and effort. It wasn’t even Heinz, but ketchup just the same. You can see the bottle  in the picture above. It tasted really good especially since we had fresh pineapple that we included in the dish… yum! Nothing like fresh pineapple.

So now that the secret is revealed will it change what you think about Chinese food? Or as we call it here… food!

Stay tuned for more…

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Categories: Chinese Adventures, Culture, everyday occurances, strange adventure, teaching overseas, travel, unique experiences | Tags: , , , , , , , ,

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One thought on “Ancient Chinese Secret Explained-Pt.2

  1. Leslie

    See…no matter how different we think cultures are they all have basics that are the same and bind us.
    I’ve used ketchup as an ingredient in many sauces / dishes here in North America.

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