Again, I walked through the streets of Philadelphia. Hey, I only have another three years to do this. In three years, I'll look back, and think nostalgically, "Wow, I miss those days walking around Philly, buying food, looking at those rich hipsters smoke and buy from Urban". Cuz, in three years, I won't be living in Philadelphia anymore. I'll probably move onto Boston, or NY. NY is so much larger than Philadelphia. If Chinatown in NY is considered a thin sliver of the Hong Kong pie, then Chinatown in Philadelphia is considered a measly crumb from that pie (and the Chinatown from Boston is...uh, a smaller crumb). Through walking around Philadelphia, you'd think that I'd learn to enjoy this culture. Unfortunately, it seems that I just yearn to be back in Hong Kong.
See, that's my problem; I'm not good at moving and adjusting every 4-6 years; the lifestyle is too ephemeral for me. I can't say I miss anything about Ireland, but I miss Kingswood. I miss HK. Now, I miss high school, even though my journal entries from then tell me that there is nothing to miss.
In an effort to enjoy my time at Philadelphia and live in the moment, I again trekked across the city, all the way to Penn's Landing, and back. There was a Chinatown Block Party today, to celebrate the anniversary of the Official Seizure Of America From The Natives. It's funny to think that all that stuff happened in Philadelphia. ...and now I'm here to get my free drink, sponsored by Wawa. I learned that I actually like raspberry lemonade.
I believe that I love the Mayflower Cafe; last time's avocado bubble drink was phenomenal, and this time's coconut snowball was AMAZING. It was so gooey and soft and fresh I thought I was eating some sort of jelly! It was more solid, though, and...I just loved the chilled, watery-but-sweet-and-light taste of the glutinous coating! The red bean paste was normal. So much better than mochi! $0.80. It's always a delight when something is better than expected. It wasn't thick and chewy and dry, like all the ones from other bakeries (which I still love, but the texture of this one was just perfect for me today).
Mong Kok is a place in HK. The bakery/restaurant was absolutely packed; I had to eat outside because all the seats were taken. I got a lemon bun. A terribly spent $0.80.
I wondered how they could stick lemon into this bun. In the filling? Lemon jam? Curd? Actual lemon pieces? I mean, I understand why pineapple buns are called "pineapple" buns even though they lack any pineapple - they look like pineapples. This lemon bun looked nothing like a lemon (except for the colour but that's a terrible way to name your bakery products)! From what I could tell, there was a layer of puff pastry on top of a normal Chinese-bread bun. But what was the filling, and where was the lemon? Oh, and it was even called "lemon bun" in Chinese. Ning meng bao. 柠檬包。
There was no lemon in the bun. Instead, there was shredded and dried pig pieces. Pork floss. Or fish floss. I'm not sure what animals taste like anymore...
I guess the question is: why would I ever go back to Mong Kok bakery if I evidently have had a better experience at Mayflower Cafe? Well, Mong Kok bakery has a wider selection and cheaper mousse cakes. I've yet to try any of those though. Either way, I realised that I shouldn't buy anymore food for the next month. Instead, I should just swim, run, and bike.
I went to the third Nuts To You (on 7th and Walnut) in Philadelphia and, this time, there were pizza-flavoured flour-coated peanuts! For 99c! They also had cheese and garlic flavour, but I figured that I am most likely not going to consume 4 lbs of flour-coated peanuts within a month (uh, actually, I probably could consume them all during a week...) so I just got the pizza ones. They're a bit stale, but alright. I guess I'll never go to Fresh Grocer again, in my life. If I do, I'll make sure to blog profusely about it.
Eggplant prices have risen. $1.09, a month ago, to 1.19, to $1.89 now, for a pound. So have cherries (pretty much x2 in price, compared to a month ago).
Maybe a food historian will be interested in my blog in a few decades? I'd be pretty happy to read some person's food blog (in the form of a sauce-splattered book, though) from the 80s. Or 20s. From Britain, or Australia.