zhang season’s just around the corner! so guama needs to go and get the ingredients ready to pak zhang~ maybe I’ll fetch her to the mini mart to get the stuff.
“Will ask the buay chai nang to help me get the stuff so that the next time I see him I can get the items in time to pak zhang on Friday.. sigh, where am I going to find the time to do it?”
“My mother-in-law is actually pretty good in doing alot of things, sa ma pun oi tik cho, kou ping kalak ke (laughs)…. Last time when the pak zhang season came around, she would ask me to chop the he bi, mushroom finely, then fry it till bi pang pang… then when the time came to actually pak zhang she would chase me away, asking me to ‘go over there and do something else’.. why is it that she never wants to teach me how to make it? I have to observe for myself and didn’t really get to take part in it. I do know that the chuk bi will have to be steamed properly so the texture is right..”
“Once I’ve fried the he bi and mushrooms, I will pak zhang, but this zhang is not the normal ones you buy outside, my mom says that you have to add something special to the mix… it’s this slightly spicy black grainy powder, in it I’ll mix pek hou chio hung, ou hou chio hung, and some bi chai ji, you know, the seeds that will grow into this fine, long pretty plant.. sometimes they’ll use it when they cook chicken or duck, then just sprinkle a little on top of it after the cooking’s done.”
“Also, the special thing about this zhang is that it’s not black, like the ones you can find at shops, but mine is white.. cause I don’t use soya sauce, also a neh ou ou sek kia si lang, pek pek sek baru sui sui ma.. bo pe io bi tou kai!”
sidenote: I find trying to type in teochew very interesting cause unless you know what the word is, guessing the meaning might get pretty tricky. Plus I think the phrases are very guama, translating them into English kinda does them no justice.