Tuesday, April 01, 2014

Dropping beggar's chicken

Those were the days.
Do you dread hearing your voice on a recording? Or watching yourself on video? That's how I feel about reading things I wrote in the distant past. The other day I opened my own cookbook to consult the recipe for bagels and wouldn't let my eyes wander over the headnotes or anything other than the recipe itself lest I come across a stupid or awkward line it's too late to change. 

This morning I thought, shoot, why did I mention dropping a beggar's chicken? The only way to explain is to link to posts from the start of this blog when the only people who read it were blood relatives. And that means I have to reread them.

I'm so glad I did. They're like sweet, sweet little time capsules. I'd forgotten what my life was like in 2008. It was very different.

Beggar's chicken is a classic Chinese dish and at some point I decided to make it. My mother was still alive and since she was a potter, she created the clay "container" in which you cook the chicken (see photo above.) That's how elaborate beggar's chicken is. I'm not sure I would have written about what happened later, but the lone commenter, thanksalot/sassy Isabel, forced the issue,

What happened was, I dropped and broke the beggar's chicken while pulling it out of the oven.

Later I took Owen out to eat proper beggar's chicken in a restaurant. He was so little! I didn't realize how little my kids were when they're little. I feel like he's all grown up now that he's 13 and has giant feet and a baritone, but in a few years I bet I'll see pictures and be shocked at how young and innocent he looked in 2014.

39 comments:

  1. We would have all been reading your blog if we had only known about it! Oh, Jennifer, never hesitate to go back and look at something you've written. It's all good, not perfect, perhaps, but good, very good. I envy your ability to go to the past by looking at your old blog posts. What a treasure!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I second all of that, beckster.

      Delete
  2. Epic story. Epic comment. Love it.

    ReplyDelete
  3. this whole saga is absolutely perfect! so glad you revived it.

    ReplyDelete
  4. This is very sweet! I have been reading your blog for several years and I particularly appreciate how real you are about your family and how obvious it is that you love them. Yesterday Joy the Baker posted an April Fool's (pasted below) post poking fun at all of the perfect, Pinterest-worthy, food blogging that goes on out there and it immediately made me think of why I LOVE your blog so much. It's funny, touching, and most of all real. You don't put out an image of perfection and I can't tell you how refreshing that is in the world of artificial food blogging where every crumb is staged, the lighting is always perfect, and we never hear about the dropped chickens. So all in all this is just to say a big thank you for your refreshing honesty and hilarious blog!

    http://joythebaker.com/2014/04/how-to-be-the-best-food-blogger-of-all/

    ReplyDelete
  5. A couple of years ago when I discovered you, your blog, and your book I read, swear to God, every entry here with so much pleasure. Reading them in order let me watch your children grow up, follow the chickens/bees/goats sagas, grieve with you ... I even remembered the beggar's chicken episode when you mentioned it the other day. Thank you for your wonderful writing, perceptiveness, grace and good humor.

    ReplyDelete
  6. The comment on that post was almost as good as the post itself!

    ReplyDelete
  7. Yes, the comment told the part of the story that nowadays you put in the post. When I first discovered you, I read all the archived posts but not the comments. Clearly I was missing a lot! I have to say that when reading about the multi-day ramen, I thought that if I made it I was more than likely to drop it on the floor on the way from kitchen to dining room. Have you seen the Fawlty Towers episode Gourmet Night? Where, with much trouble along the way, they bring a roast duck from another restaurant, then drop it on the floor, but decide it's still OK to serve, until Manuel steps on it? That's the kind of thing that would happen to me. The more elaborate a dish, the greater the probability that disaster will strike at the last minute. :) I admire your ability to carry these things off with only the occasional mishap.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Nothing to do with Beggar's Chicken, but this lovely article in the NYT made me think of you: http://www.nytimes.com/2014/04/02/dining/laurie-colwin-a-confidante-in-the-kitchen.html

    also, are you familiar with the novels of Nicole Mones? She wrote a brilliant one about the cuisine of China, called The Last Chinese Chef, that I adored.

    ReplyDelete
  9. oh, thank you for posting your occasional failures. so reassuring.

    ReplyDelete
  10. That's the beauty of blogging/writing; freezing time. X

    ReplyDelete
  11. My sister-in-law told me about your book right around the time it was published (of course I read it like a novel, cover to cover, and purchased for friends, too), and I subsequently read through your blog from oldest to newest, so I've been watching your kids grow up in fast motion!

    ReplyDelete
  12. I agree whole heartedly with your other fans. You've no cause to cringe.
    I read your book like a novel as well, laughing and crying (out loud!) throughout.
    In the words of Johnny Cash: "keep on doing what you're doin..."

    ReplyDelete
  13. holi images
    holi sms in marathi
    holi quotes
    holi wishes

    Great article, keep on the good job.
    I like the indept information typed articles like this, it keeps you up to date:)

    ReplyDelete
  14. Kannur University Hall Ticket 2016
    Kannur University Result 2016 for all course
    Kannur University Admit Card 2016
    Kannur University Hall Ticket 2017
    Kannur University Result 2017
    Kannur University Admit Card 2016
    Kannur University Entrance Date 2016
    Kannur University Degree Allotment
    Kannur University Trial Allotment 2016
    Kannur University Admission 2016
    Kannur University Onlie Admission
    Kannur University Distance Education Result 2016
    Kannur University Hall Ticket 2016
    Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar Open University BA Result 2016-2017
    Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar Open University Hall Ticket 2016
    Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar Open University Result 2016 for all course
    Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar Open University Admit Card 2016
    Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar Open University Hall Ticket 2017
    Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar Open University Result 2017
    Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar Open University Admit Card 2016
    Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar Open University Entrance Date 2016
    Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar Open University Degree Allotment
    Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar Open University Trial Allotment 2016
    Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar Open University Admission 2016
    Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar Open University Onlie Admission
    Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar Open University Distance Education Result 2016
    Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar Open University Hall Ticket 2016
    Karnatak State Open University BA Result 2016-2017
    Karnatak State Open University Hall Ticket 2016
    Karnatak State Open University Result 2016 for all course
    Karnatak State Open University Admit Card 2016
    Karnatak State Open University Hall Ticket 2017
    Karnatak State Open University Result 2017
    Karnatak State Open University Admit Card 2016
    Karnatak State Open University Entrance Date 2016
    Karnatak State Open University Degree Allotment

    ReplyDelete
  15. Karnatak State Open University Trial Allotment 2016
    Karnatak State Open University Admission 2016
    Karnatak State Open University Onlie Admission
    Karnatak State Open University Distance Education Result 2016
    Karnatak State Open University Hall Ticket 2016
    Andhara University BA Result 2016-2017
    Andhara University Hall Ticket 2016
    Andhara University Result 2016 for all course
    Andhara University Admit Card 2016
    Andhara University Hall Ticket 2017
    Andhara University Result 2017
    Andhara University Admit Card 2016
    Andhara University Entrance Date 2016
    Andhara University Degree Allotment
    Andhara University Trial Allotment 2016
    Andhara University Admission 2016
    Andhara University Onlie Admission
    Andhara University Distance Education Result 2016
    Andhara University Hall Ticket 2016
    Symbiosis University BA Result 2016-2017
    Symbiosis University Hall Ticket 2016
    Symbiosis University Result 2016 for all course
    Symbiosis University Admit Card 2016
    Symbiosis University Hall Ticket 2017
    Symbiosis University Result 2017
    Symbiosis University Admit Card 2016
    Symbiosis University Entrance Date 2016
    Symbiosis University Degree Allotment
    Symbiosis University Trial Allotment 2016
    Symbiosis University Admission 2016
    Symbiosis University Onlie Admission
    Symbiosis University Distance Education Result 2016
    Symbiosis University Hall Ticket 2016
    IBS Hydrabad BA Result 2016-2017
    IBS Hydrabad Hall Ticket 2016
    IBS Hydrabad Result 2016 for all course
    IBS Hydrabad Admit Card 2016
    IBS Hydrabad Hall Ticket 2017

    ReplyDelete