Chinese food


It doesn’t matter whether the lazy Susan is spun clockwise or anti, the same food keeps on reappearing. And that’s the problem with the whole contraption. I actually like Chinese food, I think it’s great. As long as it’s eaten as a takeaway in front of the telly or seated in the Golden Dragon in the High Street. In China itself, it loses its appeal.

The photo shows a speciality of Sichuan province, the hotpot. And this is a posh restaurant, where each diner has a pot placed on an individual electric stove. On the right partition inside the pot is a broth for those who like their innards spiced up, on the left a more subdued flavour. So lazy Susan revolves on her never-ending journey and we take off the portions we fancy as they appear, and pop them into the brew.

And the practicalities of the system are great. Unfortunately, what lets the procedure down is the portions themselves. If they don’t look at you as they spin towards you and away, then they come from somewhere deep inside the animal. I’ve had a hotpot containing four different kinds of stomach. Gizzards and intestines also feature. And there is always someone who’ll tuck in to the pig brain. But it’s never me. Of course, it’s a cultural prejudice that stops us eating various foods and those of us who are prepared to tuck in to anything that orbits into their paths are certainly less wasteful than someone picky like me. But whatever the food is like, this is a sociable and fun way of sharing it with friends. So, although I’ve never enjoyed the food, I’ve always loved the meal.


By andrewderham

My background in chemistry has taken me to live and work in the Arabian Gulf, Vietnam and China, but now I’m happily settled in Gloucester writing novels and short stories. There are currently four books featuring Harry Hart and Asha Kanjaria, with more to follow. The stories comprise suspense, laughter, tears, hard-nosed killers, barking-mad nutters, folks of monumental goodness and all the joys and miseries, vices and virtues of the human condition. I hope you enjoy reading them.

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