Wednesday, June 9, 2010

China Trip: Donghuamen Night Market

We made it to a handful of markets while we were in Beijing, including the Silk Street Market (haggling for anything and everything) and the Pearl Market (huge building overflowing with pearl vendors), but the most memorable by far was the touristy Donghuamen Night Market.

The Donghuamen is located in a swanky part of Beijing with numerous luxury brand stores lining the streets, and while the fare at this night market was certainly exotic, ya can't exactly call it high brow...

There were crayfish on a stick...


Scorpions on a stick...


Crispy bird's nest...


Hmm, let's see, bee cocoon, long horn beetles, water beetles, centipedes, snakes, silk worm or star fish... on a stick!


And many, many other things that ought not be considered edible, not the least of which included sea horses, grasshoppers and various animals' internal organs.

Did we eat anything? Well, yes. No, I was not brave (or stupid) enough to eat the things you see pictured above. I did, however, consume a small sandwich consisting of an English muffin with diced meat inside. I saw this and thought it looked appealing and ordered it without knowing what it was. Only after hearing the price did I look at the price board and learn that what I'd ordered was stir fried pig liver with green chili peppers. And you know what — it wasn't bad.

Joe, having successfully devoured his own pig liver sandwich, got even bolder and decided to give the exotic food roulette wheel another spin. While I snacked on sugar-covered strawberries and kiwi on a stick, he returned from a food tent holding this:

Those would be fried silk worms.

He ate one. Chewed. His grimace told me all I needed to know. The verdict: The outside was crispy, the inside, well — I seem to remember it being described as "like a burst of puss." NO thank you!

I think the only thing I ate after that was some fried ice cream, which was delicious. And sane.

1 comment:

AdelaideBen said...

That's... er... an experience he's unlikely to forget. And with a pitch like that, "and inside everyone is a little burst of puss", it's got INSTANT HIT written all over it!

Well done Joe, you've just earned your I-can't-believe-I'm-actually-gonna-eat-this badge.