Tuesday, June 9, 2009

What is this? 干煸茧蛹

Hahha. Good stuff. I was delighted when I came across this while reading a Chinese recipe site 美食吧.

This is the fun filled yum yum in a package. You know the story of how my domineering aunt scolded me like mad because I refused to eat the fried "dates" at dinner during our China trip in 2004? When the tour guide came in and asked us how the food tasted. My aunt exuberantly declared the "dates" as the best dish at the table (not without pointing out that I did not know how to appreciate fine food). And how her face turned deathly pale (literally, I realised then this is how the expression came about), when the tour guide pointed out gently that they were not dates, they were some sort of insect. Turns out I got away with it because I don't like dates.

Just in case why you wonder my aunt was daft enough to think this was a date, the nasty restaurant served the "date" as slices, which looked like the cross section of a date (see top image). What we hapless tourists didn't know what that....
Well now I finally know exactly what sort of insect/"dates". It is deepfried silkworm cocoons (complete with the dead carcass of the silkworm inside, aka where the "seed" is).

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