Much to my surprise, we didn’t need the transitional snacks for long and my kids actually enjoyed real, and cheap, Chinese food. One of my funniest memories is taking the boys to eat lamb kebabs on the famous Wangfujing pedestrian street.
There they were, twins doing synchronized eating off these long sticks, looking cute as could be and attracting some attention. The best though was when some tourists stopped to take pictures of them. This happened again on Tiananmen Square when they plopped down with their 2 year old cousin to eat chocolate cupcakes. The biggest tourist attraction in China, besides the Great Wall, and people were taking pictures of my kids eating.
Becoming our own tourist attraction aside, the food was quite an adventure. Those lamb kebabs were quite a favorite as were the chocolate cupcakes (which were also quite crumbly and messy). In Beijing, we could find almost anything and McDonald’s was never too far. In restaurants, we could always order rice and eggs or noodles and could never go wrong with sweet and sour pork. For breakfast, baozi (a kind of pork dumpling) was cheap and loved by all as were the egg “bings” (eggs cooked onto a thin batter with a hoisin-like sauce, cilantro and hard cracker type thing). Hot pot was fun for them too when safety precautions were exercised.
The only trouble we had was near the end of the journey when we went to visit my husband’s favorite aunt near Fuzhou. This involved a treacherous journey through mud and flooding by 3-wheeled car to the middle of nowhere. The boys were ready to be home and did not eat much of the mostly fishy foods prepared. There was only one local “convenience store” with very limited items. The sweet aunt attempted to make them pancakes using mostly corn starch. They weren’t half bad, considering, and the boys made a good go of it and even at the age of barely 3 seemed able to appreciate the effort she made. And for the travel weary mom, that meant a lot too.