Archive for August 30th, 2010

Zhong Zi, Revisited

Back in July, I posted about zhong zi, the Chinese steamed glutinous rice packages (see 9 July 2010 post). At that time, I didn’t have pictures for “plain” zhong zi. I do now. I’ve always known this as “plain” zhong zi but the Wikipedia article calls it jianshui zong. The rice is treated with lye water (aqueous¬†sodium carbonate), giving them their distinctive yellow color (information from Wikipedia). This a picture of the wrapped zhong zi.

Wrapped Zhong Zi

In comparison to the zhong zi with filling, this “plain” zhong zi is “rectangle” shaped instead of “triangle” shaped. Here’s the zhong zi after its been disrobed.

Zhong Zi, Disrobed

The rice has a yellow color from the treatment with lye water. Here’s the¬†dissected view.

Zhong Zi, Dissected

The rice in the middle is colored red from the piece of stem/stick that placed in the zhong zi (upper left of the zhong zi). I’ve asked what the coloring is for years and I’ve still not found the answer.

Growing up, I always choose the “plain” zhong zi over the filled ones. I used to (and still do) eat it with a sprinkling of sugar. The Mouse has a sweet tooth.

Here’s the Wikipedia article (if you missed it the first time): http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zongzi.


The Mouse


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Koshihikari Echigo Beer

A couple of posts ago (see 26 August 2010 post), I showed you our inventory of bottle openers based on Beijing opera masks. I thought I would follow-up with Koshihikari Echigo beer. We are not big beer or alcohol drinkers (maybe once every couple of months). But we do enjoy trying different beverages once in a while. This pattern does not include trips to China (that’s a whole different ball game for another post).

Several people recommended this beer to us. they described as being light and refreshing. One of the different things about it is that one of the ingredients is rice. I couldn’t find the company’s website.

Koshihikari Echigo Beer

The Cat and I shared this bottle purchased at our Japanese membership warehouse market. The beer was indeed light and refreshing. We were not able to taste the rice. I tasted a slight sweet aftertaste. For some reason, it reminds me of ginger ale soda. The beer has a 5 percent alcohol content. It’s brewed and bottled by the Echigo Beer Company in Niigata, Japan. The artwork on the label was also a plus.

I think the beer would pair well with sashimi and sushi (perfect for us).

Gan Bei! Kanpai!

The Mouse

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