So when I was a guest at a luncheon buffet, I thought I might as well check that one off the list -- okay, I've tried chicken feet. No big deal, really. These feet were gently poached and easy to come to terms with. I've since picked up, and put down, chicken feet that were a little tougher.
Did you ever ask yourself how even a place as prosperous as North America could provide enough chicken wings for Superbowl Sunday? Do they have mutant chickens somewhere with four sets of wings? What is the chicken-to-people ratio in the U.S.? Okay, I just looked it up. But on the other hand, we don't eat chicken feet. And guess what? We sell them to China:
“China is a good market for certain items that are not of high value in the domestic market.... Chicken feet and wing tips may be worth a few cents per pound in the domestic market but can sell for many times this amount in China," says Virginia's Secretary of Agriculture, celebrating the news that China has just lifted a ban on poultry imports from the state of Virginia.
The grocery stores here have display cases heaped with items I can't identify, some of which frankly does not look appetizing to me. I mean things in the preserved-egg or pickled vegetable line. I don't get very adventurous when buying groceries because I wouldn't know what to do with it once I bought it. On the other hand, there are lots of baked goods to resist, which is something I didn't expect. Incidentally the two foods I miss the most are mustard and cheddar cheese.
Also, folks, Ross and I highly recommend this beautifully photographed television series about Chinese cuisine, "A Bite of China." I learned about this series from my students as well.