Categories: China

My first meal in Yiwu China

I woke up at 11:00 at a hotel in Yiwu China. I had arrived the day before at 11:45 pm in the evening, after a 30 hours trip from Copenhagen, Denmark.

I only had airplane food for more than 30 hours, so when I woke up I was starting to get a little hungry, very hungry actually. The hotel had stopped serving breakfast, it was not a “Breakfast all day”  kind of hotel.

I had to face it… I had to go outside to find something to eat. I got dressed, hit the road, and started to look for a restaurant. But then I started to think.. all signs were in Chinese only.. and I do not speak Chinese, even less read it. Then I remembered what I read a long time ago “Chinese eat everything that moves, the only things with 4 legs they don’t eat, is tables and chairs”.  Then a title from an old Danish movie, “They eat dogs in China” popped up in my brain. Then a lot of not-so-nice pictures started a nasty slide show in my brain. Then “happy go lucky”, I found what looked like, a kind of a buffet-style restaurant, where all the dishes were on display.

This kind of restaurant is very normal in Thailand, all the dishes are ready-made and displayed on a counter. The food is not hot, but it is served with hot rice. And you see what you get. I hoped for the best and went inside. I was really lucky, the restaurant was nice, clean and had more than 30 different dishes to choose between. The food was not displayed on a counter as I know from Thailand, but it was placed inside of a “food display”, a very nice difference.

I could still not ask about what kind of food it was, but I could have a look, and it is a whole better than ordering “blind” (that’s where you point to a random line in a menu where you understand nothing, and therefore not know what you get).

There was a lot to choose between and it all looked very delicious. I stopped my brain from running wild, I forced it into a logical mode, I told myself “You are in a nice clean restaurant, in a nice big civilized city, namely Yiwu China, so stop worrying and EAT, protein is protein” .

I chose two different dishes, one with something that looked like noodles the other with chili. I don’t know what it was, but it looked nice and tasted even better. I found it is always a good idea to order some spicy dishes if you don’t know if you like the food or not. Since I was a little boy I have eaten what I have been served, or at least I have tried to, and honestly, it had not always been possible. Therefore I have learned some tricks, so I can eat almost everything thing I am served, and if it still not possible to eat it, I have developed, a lot of very good excuses, but more about them another time.

The chili trick is one of my favorites. It is a very effective trick that allows you to eat almost everything, it is a lot nicer than the swallow trick (it is the one, where you hold your breath and swallow, when you are holding your breath, you can not taste what you are swallowing). But I like the chili trick better, as it allows you to chew the food, the chili makes the food so hot and spicy that you can not taste any bad taste. The chili makes it all taste like chili. It is an easy trick, just remember the worse the taste the more chili you have to use. But there was no need for any tricks any here, both dishes were very delicious. And as you can see in the pictures I ate it all. The price for the meal was also good, only 19 Yuan in total, it is the same as 2,50 Euro only. The low price told me it was chicken and pork I ate, the more exotic kind of meat is normally more expensive.

But I like the chili trick better, as it allows you to chew the food, the chili makes the food so hot and spicy that you can not taste any bad taste. The chili makes it all taste like chili. It is an easy trick, just remember the worse the taste the more chili you have to use. But there was no need for any tricks any here, both dishes were very delicious. And as you can see in the pictures I ate it all. The price for the meal was also good, only 19 Yuan in total, it is the same as 2,50 Euro only. The low price told me it was chicken and pork I ate, the more exotic kind of meat is normally more expensive.

But there was no need for any tricks any here, both dishes were very delicious. And as you can see in the pictures I ate it all. The price for the meal was also good, only 19 Yuan in total, it is the same as 2,50 Euro only. The low price told me it was chicken and pork I ate, the more exotic kind of meat is normally more expensive.

The low price told me it was chicken and pork I ate, the more exotic kind of meat is normally more expensive. You can ask if I could not taste what I was eating and the answer to that is “Yes it tasted like chicken”. But it is here I always am careful to be too sure.

I have never tasted snakes, rats, insects, or other kinds of weird animals, the most exotic I have tasted is a crocodile, and it tasted like chicken.

I have been offered to taste a lot of different kinds of meat while traveling around the world. Every time I have declined to taste, I am only eating chicken, beef, and pork.

The funny part though is, every time I have declined to taste a weird kind of meat people always said to me “you will like it, it tastes just like chicken” my answer has always been “then I stick to the chicken” So I am sure the price is a safe indicator of what you are eating, crocodiles and poisonous snakes are for sure more expensive than chicken. I left the restaurant with a very nice feeling. I was not hungry anymore and I had found a nice and clean restaurant in Yiwu China, with delicious food and cheap prices.