In December of 2008 Brian Hartenstein and family left America for an adventurous life overseas to live and work throughout Asia, raising three daughters with a sense of wonder and awe at the possibility of the world. It is now 2016 and the adventure continues back home in Oregon. This blog remains as a time capsule to that period. Thank you so much to all our friends around the world. Please stay in touch. We miss you all!
Sunday, November 30, 2014
The Legend of Pork Bone Tea
Oh Boy! Time for some street eats. There is no better street food in the world, that merges cultures and cuisines, like Singapore.
I won't take picture of food. While table after table around me is pulling out their camera to snap close-up of dishes so sweetly delivered, I'd much rather pick up my chopsticks and spoon.
Incredible bowls of Laksa, a Chinese/Malay curry blended with Vermicelli, coconut milk, and fish slices so powerful it cleans your pores... and delightful Hokkien Prawn Mee which combines rice and egg noodles and Biryani a kind of Indian/Muslim fried rice with cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, and bay leaves... Bak Kut Teh and Satay and Sambal Sting Ray and... well, you get the 'real' picture.
One of the great dishes in Singapore is Pork Bone Tea/Bak Kut Teh and it even has a legend (any food with a legend is worth trying) that states once a beggar was wandering through the land and stopped at a local noodle vendor to ask for scraps. The proprietor, who was also so poor, did not want to send the wretched man away hungry, placed an pork bone in small bowl and threw together leftover spices including anise and pepper with warm soup...resembling a brown cup of tea. Thus, a national dish was born.
Spice and sense and unbelievable aroma. I can still taste it now.