Friday, April 19
67th annual Smelt Fry at the Harvard Sportsman’s Club. "All the smelt you can eat!" Plus cole slaw, potato chips, bread, relishes, and beverages. By beverages I mean pop and most definitely beer. Not craft brews, but I'm guessing from what we've had at the club's Wild Game Dinner there will be classic kegs like PBR, Old Style, and Stroh's. If you can't make it out to pastoral McHenry County, both Shaw's Crab House locations in Chicago and Schaumburg have Lake Erie smelt the whole month of April, and Calumet Fisheries always has fried "smelts".
SINGAPORE — Greetings from the Republic of Singapore, the Southeast Asian city-state-island country that's roughly halfway between China and Australia. Though we're 9,364 miles or so from Chicago, about 21 hours on a plane direct with United, the question of thick or thin crust rages here too. But in this, the Lion City, we’re talking about kaya toast, the national breakfast dish that consists of toasted bread spread with kaya then tiled with butter, served with soft-cooked eggs, and coffee.
Kaya is a pale green, sweet coconut milk jam infused with pandan leaves which impart color and herbaceous flavor.
Like billions of Chinese worldwide this weekend, I'd hoped to observe Ching Ming (Cantonese), or Qingming (Mandarin), to pay my respects to ancestors by visiting gravesites with family for a bit of spring cleaning, as well as leave offerings of food and drink.
But with the current bird flu scare, travel is noticeably down, while authorities destroyed more than 20,000 birds in live markets, though poultry is still being eaten.
In Chicagoland, most locals now celebrate the holiday in the Chinese section at Mt.
Greetings from Shanghai, where a new strain of bird flu has killed two men and caused four more people to become critically ill. A patient diagnosis leaked to the Chinese social media site Weibo offered details of the most recent patient: a woman who worked as a poultry butcher in a Nanjing market. On March 30, doctors confirmed she was infected with H7N9 avian influenza.
Did you save any Kinder eggs for Easter? Remember I told you about the $2,500 contraband chocolate eggs at Christmas? Well a new street legal chocolate surprise egg, with a toy inside, has just been released in this country. But is Choco Treasure all that it's cracked up to be?
I'm flying to Shanghai on Friday packing shang. That is Midwestern slang for what the Chinese consider one of the most treasured gifts from our country: American ginseng from Wisconsin.