Supermarket smiles

5 Dec

We went to the supermarket one recent weekend.  It had been a long time since I had been to the supermarket actually – which is embarrassing to say, but true.  With all my business travel I have been eating a lot of delivery – or buying vegetables at one of the small stands on my way home.

The supermarket by our house is always reorganizing the merchandise, which means each trip is like a treasure hunt.  This trip I focused on two items that really made me smile.

Do you want to take them home for dinner?

Do you want to take them home for dinner?

The first was an entire vat of chicken feet – toenails and all that were piled up just like you would see onions or apples.  We must have gone at a slow time of the day because the vat was overflowing – not yet picked over.  My husband looked at them closely and asked if I wanted to purchase them.  Since that is the one Chinese food that I avoid if possible – I knew he was joking, so played along.

Just beside the chicken feet were a series of what looked like mini swimming pools with netting over the top.  Inside were live hairy crabs – sorted according to size and gender and ready to take home.  The crabs brought back memories of the crab basket I was given as a present several years ago and made me smile.

One of the tubs of crabs - yes they are hairy - there is hair on their front claws

One of the tubs of crabs – yes they are hairy – there is hair on their front claws

After a short discussion – we decided to purchase three of them and bring them home to steam.  The attendant took them out and deftly wrapped each crab in string before putting them in a plastic bag with several holes in it.  These crabs were tied much more tightly than my errant crab of before.

We took quite a few pictures, but unfortunately the next day Li’s phone broke and so we lost all of them.  Trust me though – that woman was a master of her craft.

That night we had a crab feast – and no chicken feet.

What’s your favorite part of the supermarket?

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12 Responses to “Supermarket smiles”

  1. expatlingo December 5, 2013 at 9:10 am #

    Nice your hairy crabs are free to wiggle until sold. Our supermarket keeps them all tied up in rows in a big refrigerator. Ready for instant sale I suppose, but it’s strange to think of them live and tied up all day.

    • gkm2011 December 7, 2013 at 6:51 pm #

      I have seen places with pre-tied crabs, but these were free to wander – along with the frogs which were in the neighboring vat.

  2. Every Day Adventures in Asia December 5, 2013 at 3:49 pm #

    Even in my meat eating days of 20+ years ago, chicken feet wasn’t a favourite. Could eat it but… good to hear you had a crab feast!

    As for favourite part of the supermarket, depends on what kind of market it is… for veggies prefer getting from the ‘village’ market where there is a close human interaction, a joke here, a haggle there, dramatic clutching of chest with a mock heart attack at how prices have risen, smiles all around…

    But if there are a lot of things needed – like today – then a nice A/C environment where can zip in and grab most of the list is preferred. I’m always somehow grumpy at the counter as these young kids punch various things into the machine, double check all the prices and I’m nearly tearing my hair out in impatience by the end!

    As for us – we have about 20 people coming for dinner tonight… so time to stop blog faffery and get out the door to shop, cook & enjoy. :-)

    • gkm2011 December 7, 2013 at 6:54 pm #

      Hope your dinner party went well! I tend to be in a bad mood at the supermarket as well because the lines are so long. However I am learning to go with the flow and appreciate the weird and wonderful. After I did a face plant at our local veggie market I try to avoid it. Would rather not repeat that experience!

  3. ladyofthecakes December 5, 2013 at 6:20 pm #

    I think chicken feet would not find their way onto my dinner plate either. I love (super)market pics!
    Did you see the one I took a couple of weeks ago?
    http://ladyofthecakes.wordpress.com/2013/11/21/i-know-im-in-spain-when-its-muzzle-for-dinner/

    • gkm2011 December 7, 2013 at 6:59 pm #

      I had missed it – what a great shot! I don’t know how snout would be prepared – Chicken feet I have sampled several times. :)

      • ladyofthecakes December 7, 2013 at 7:06 pm #

        Never tried chicken feet, but I do quite like cartilage…

  4. What? Crabs have their feet and toenails on too. You don’t seem to mind it? ;-)

    • gkm2011 December 7, 2013 at 7:01 pm #

      Crabs I don’t eat the shell – I crack them off for the meat inside! Chicken feet it is actually the texture that I tend to pass on. :)

  5. sarahinguangzhou December 8, 2013 at 5:07 pm #

    Yes I’m with you on the chicken feet. I often got told off for not wanting to eat them ‘oh it’s because you think they;’re dirty’. No it’s not that but just that they have no taste. I tried them once; that was enough.
    Supermarket trips in China always took so long, mainly because you had to queue individually for different types of products; cosmetics had their own till, electronic stuff theirs, household goods another. this seemed to rather defeat the convenience of a supermarket.
    Here shopping takes forever right now because the whole shop has been given over to ‘seasonal items’ and everyone seems to be out buying enough food to feed the world for ten years.
    My favourite part of any supermarket is the exit door.

    • gkm2011 December 9, 2013 at 9:15 pm #

      I like supermarkets in the States because you can get everything in one place. China requires a good sense of humor to get everything done with a smile for sure!

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