airline food for new year’s eve

Happy New Year’s Eve! Yeah, I know, you thought I died or something, right? Well, I’ve been … busy. And lazy. It’s cold! My apartment has crap insulation and when it’s so cold and I’m all snuggled up in my blanket next to the heater, I want nothing more than to watch Miss Marple and drift off to sleep.

But today I’m out and about! Although I’ve spent the last two hours sitting and waiting for my delayed flight to Korea. I wonder, what is it about waiting for flights to Korea that inspires me to post?

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Anyhow, because the flight was delayed, they handed out meal boxes consisting of rice, tofu, vegetarian chicken (a tofu patty), and lion’s head (pork meatballs). It was on the level of cafeteria food, meaning not good. But hey, it’s more than a US airline would do!

Have a happy 2015, everyone!

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uniquely asian: the potato chip saga

A while back I had remarked about the weird flavors of potato chips on offer in Shanghai. Well, I thought I’d take things a step further. So here’s my review of Wasabi Shrimp and Spicy Green Peppercorn Fish. Ah Lay’s, I know you’re trying to cater to the very-lucrative Asian market, but … slow your roll.

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First of all, I have to admit that I’ve never liked wasabi. The worst thing that could happen to me when eating sushi would be that the fish or roll would run into that glob of green nastiness. So in a way that potato chip flavor was successful, because the wasabi taste was definitely present – but I had to chuck the bag because I couldn’t get beyond three chips. I could taste a hint of the shrimp, but it was pretty much all wasabi to me. Spicy Green Peppercorn Fish, on the other hand, I finished. It was reminiscent of the dish – all pepper and not fishy – but not too spicy or numbing, so my palate could cope. It wasn’t particularly great and definitely won’t make my list of favorites or go-tos, but it was interesting in an entirely tolerable sort of way.

Verdict: Avoid Wasabi Shrimp (unless you happen to really like wasabi) but give Spicy Green Peppercorn Fish a try … it’s definitely Chinese-y.

why is this cookie yellow? butter chips ahoy

Butter Chips Ahoy (趣多多黄油味). Never again. When it comes to chocolate chip cookies (especially the packaged kind), I’m generally a purist. Chewy? Not a fan. Rainbow M&M? Maybe on occasion. Butter? WHAT ON EARTH!? For the sake of experimentation and living in the moment, I tried them. *shudder*

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I can just imagine the conversation that must’ve occurred in the Chips Ahoy R&D department somewhere.

1: Hey, we’re going to enter the China market.
2: Cool. But do Chinese people eat chocolate chip cookies?
1: Not much. But those tins of Danish butter cookies sell pretty well.
2: We could diversify into butter cookies.
1: But we only know how to do chocolate chip cookies.
1 and 2: BUTTER CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIES!

Sigh. Good idea, bad execution. Deplorably bad execution. I’m a big fan of butter cookies and I’m a big fan of chocolate chip cookies. Putting them together sounds intriguing, but I will happily eat them separately. Because, ew. The cookies look pretty much like normal chocolate chip cookies except they’re yellow-y. First bite is fine, almost nice, but then you taste it – the artificial butter flavor. Retch. I don’t like the Chewy Chips Ahoy because you can practically taste the oil, but that’s nothing compared to this ‘butter’. GAG. I’m all for the fake butter on popcorn, but this isn’t just fake butter, it’s chemical-taste with a hint of butter.

Verdict: Avoid. Stay away.

yams yum

I’m in the middle of midterms. Oh my gosh. My to-do list is two pages long right now. Must work on graduate school stuff. Thanksgiving is Thursday. Today I bought some yams. Cheap as heck. 5 kuai for a bag about 2.5 pounds. That’s less than a buck for around 8 good-sized yams! Don’t they look delish? Yeah, they’re a bit iffy-looking. Taste alright though.

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unchanged tastes

China is a huge country with a long history, a distinct culture, and a notable cuisine. Unfortunately, that cuisine ain’t always to my liking. Sure, I will eat the Chinese food and I’ll try all the weirdness, but at the end of the day, I will probably always prefer a hamburger. Against chicken fried steak and mashed potatoes, no amount of mooncakes or pan-fried dumplings could compete.

The other day I had a ham and cheese sandwich on ciabatta bread. Fantastic. Unfortunately, still lactose intolerant, so I felt sick for the rest of the day. But in my opinion, a few hours of feeling absolutely queasy were worth it. Last night, made spaghetti with meat sauce. Again, fantastic. Well, not fantastic because the pasta was slightly overcooked and the sauce came from a can (that same can from a few posts before), but still good. This evening, I made myself a grilled cheese sandwich. FANTASTIC. Granted, it was cheddar cheese instead of my usual colby jack and I didn’t use as much butter as I usually do because it’s so expensive, but wow … I’ve missed that. And now, due to my lack of overcoming lactose intolerance, I will probably be queasy for the rest of the night.

See the attached picture below. Those are potato chips that are lemon tea flavored. Does that sound good, disgusting, or simply interesting to you? I had seen commercials for ’em, so I was fairly intrigued. Bought ’em, tried ’em, and … I would say “tossed ’em” but I’m too cheap for that. They’re just weird, but I will brave through it and finish ’em. I don’t think one’s tastes can really be changed. I might become more accustomed to certain foods, but I’m still going to like what I like. And lemon tea-flavored potato chips will never make it on my list.

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