Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Steamed Rice

 Lately we've been having steamed rice for lunch. It's only 25 baht for a ladleful, which means it's about a fourth of the cheapest food on the menu.

Mom and I generally have it with two or three packets of sugar and lately, one packet of creamer.

This gives it the taste of 'orez cu lapte'— rice with milk— which is absolutely delicious and which I will eat with eagerness every time it's prepared.

Ileana, like any 'normal' person, has it with soy sauce.

Speaking of which, people in China do not have the sort of soy sauce you find in America. It's something like a sweet non-vinegarish vinegar. It's annoying and disgusting and gave us a shock when we first tried it.

Japanese soy sauce is more like the American soy sauce, but it's thicker.

It's quite interesting to think that soy sauce, which we thought was one of the most generic things possible, is so different across the ocean!

Speaking of generic things… Ritz crackers.

Chinese Ritz crackers are less salty. Thai ones are much more buttery. Come to think of it, everywhere Ritz crackers are less salty than in America, which makes them absolutely delicious. I can't have American Ritz for long without my lips puckering up from the salt.

Thailand also has imitation Ritz— they are flaky, unsalted, and rather tasteless. We have them with Nutella.

Nutella in Thailand tastes a bit more like hazelnuts than what I remember, but only at certain times. The hot dogs in Thailand are also delicious. It might be because we eat them cold, whereas in America we ate them hot and boiled (by the way, you can eat hot dogs 'raw').

What else?

Whereas India takes out all kissing scenes (or most of them) and mention of beef, Thailand seems to slow down certain parts in movies, and hurries up other parts!

They had The Parent Trap playing with Lindsay Lohan, and I went and watched a bit. The scene where Elizabeth hugs Hallie after she comes home from camp is in slow motion, which I don't remember ever being in the movie. And another scene where Elizabeth walks into her bridal shop seems to be speeded up.

India, Thailand, and Cambodia, however, all have subtitles. China doesn't even play American movies, and we weren't interested in TV in Japan or in Tibet.

Actually, India has subtitles only on some channels. Other channels have been dubbed in Hindi. 

But back to steamed rice.

It's the cheapest, fastest food here. Now we have hot dogs and bread, we have bread and Nutella for breakfast, steamed rice for lunch (or we skip lunch/breakfast all together), and then actual food for dinner.

I think I'd skip actual food for dinner completely if there were more hot dogs— I don't know why, but I probably need something that's in the hot dogs, which is why they're so good.

Not sure what I'll have for breakfast. I think I want a rice pudding with fruit…

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