Thursday, July 12, 2012

the thousand-year-egg experience

I personally love Pidan (皮蛋), also known as Century Egg or thousand-year-egg. They look and taste crazy, but I grew up with them, know what they are, and actually enjoy the flavors of these black eggs.

John is not a big fan of Pidan. I guess by looking at them they look totally wrong. Jello-O like "egg whites" and soft cheese gooey "egg yolks" don't seem to be components of eggs. I'd offer him a piece of Pidan every time I'm having some, but he'd kindly refuse.

Growing up we would have the Pidan sliced and topped on tofu,with special sweet and thick soy sauce, bonito flakes, and maybe some Asian mayo (!) such as Kewpie.

I also really like diced Pidan in rice soups (Cantonese style.) Some of the Chinese restaurants in town serve them and all the ones I've had so far are delicious.

When I enjoy Pidan at home I'd simply just dip them in Taiwanese black vinegar. Yum. And then I read about how you can enjoy Pidan with slices of pickled ginger (like that besides your sushi.) I tried it and it was yummy! The acidity from the pickled ginger blends with and balances out the flavors of the Pidan so it tastes milder, smooth, and actually very good!

So I wrapped a piece of pickled ginger around a little wedge of Pidan and convinced John to give it a try.


uhh... it was not THAT scary, dude...

bite it, John!


John looks all silly in the photos, but I think he actually enjoyed the Pidan wrapped in pickled ginger slices. In his own words, the pickled ginger-wrapped Pidan is "like strong, aromatic soft cheese. Strangely good."

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