Travel the World: Zhujiajiao, Shanghai China

Sunday, March 25, 2018

It's been a couple months since a travel post.  (In other words, it's been a few months since I convinced myself to sit my butt down and edit some vacation photos). It feels like just a short while ago when I took these but damn, nine months has flown by in a blink of an eye. Today's post features photos taken in Zhujiajiao, an ancient water town in the Qingpu district of Shanghai. 

This historic area is built over canals, not unlike Venice, and has been in use for almost two thousand years.  It's located inland, about 50km from the coast. When I was came here ten years ago, it had a much more homey, quaint feel. Nowadays, tourists are making their way here in decent numbers and I feel like it's way more packed. Most of these structures used to be homes, but most have been converted into tea shops and food stalls. Still an interesting area to go, if only for the nostalgic foods that might be harder to come by in more modernized areas of Shanghai. 

 All manners of tofu and small water fowl are roasted on sticks.

 Lots of steamed offerings. In the foreground we have a little baskets of wild rice, with jujube and winter melon candy.

 Roasted quail eggs (and one duck egg).

Sweet steamed rice flour cakes. Kinda like fruitcake, but without the questionably long shelf life.

Other varieties of sweets. Including cakes made out of sweetened soybean curd, candy made from pine nuts and maltose, sticky rice cakes flavored with pandan. There's also a kind of candy called "sand candy" which I get does not sound appetizing at all, as few things are as gross as gritty candy. Middle Eastern friends, you might be surprised to find that sand candy is basically like halvah, but pressed into thin sheets and stacked.

 Are these steamed buns not adorable?

Some other culinary oddities: dried beans & salted tender bamboo (kinda like a snack), mint citrus candy, stinky tofu, locally cultured yogurt.

This area is pretty easy to get to by the subway system. The number 14 line will take you about a quarter hour walk away from the canals. 

In the summer, you'll want to step into a tea house... if only to escape the heat! This is such a tranquil place to have a cup, overlooking the canal.

Do you have a favorite historical area in your city?

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