Food, food culture, food as culture and the cultures that grow our food

Lacking and craving

February 8, 2005

Supposedly craving a certain food is your body telling you that your diet lacks a certain something. But what is it that my diet lacks if I get cravings for 1000 year eggs with Cheese in a Can Soup? Could the lack of light and earthy outdoor fun up here in the Polar Circle have made me wood ash and lime deficient? Do I need to get my tochas down to Occitania where I never crave these elegant looking duck eggs?

1000 year eggs are raw duck eggs that have been coated with a paste of salt, wood ash and lime and then rolled in rice chaff to keep them from cementing together. They are placed in a ceramic pot and rotated every few days for two weeks. After this time the insides of the eggs have become ’softboiled’ and turned dark transluscent amber (the white) and greenish greyish black (the yolk).

The design of my old Mac G3 laptop (a Pismo) always reminded me of a 1000 year egg. I find this colour combination extremely elegant - the ‘white’ of the 1000 year egg is like a golden amber aspic, sometimes with fractal designs forming in it!

Doesn’t it just make you wonder how a preservation technique like this develops?

Last night’s Cheese in a Can soup was made a little bit differently than this earlier culiblog recipe. It was equally delicious.

Cheese in a Can Soup (takes minutes)

Blend together until satiny smooth:

1/2 round sheep’s cheese in brine.

The sort of cheese I’m referring to is sold in North African and Turkish shops (here in the Netherlands) with a clear picture of a sheep on the outside. Don’t use goat or cow feta for this recipe, it doesn’t taste good.

2 big dollops of yoghurt (as always, the fattier the better)
2 big dollops of creme fraiche
4 whole green onions
some milk to taste (to thin the consistency)

Serve 1000 year eggs floating in this cold ’soup’. The pale green colour of the soup contrasting the sultry dark of the egg is a sight to behold - and flavours are combine perfectly. I can assure you that the taste of 1000 year eggs is much milder than that of ordinary hardboiled chicken eggs. Don’t let the deep colours scare you away, this is delicious.

debra at 10:23 | | post to


  1. Are you in the Polar circle or did I misunderstand?

    Comment by MA — February 9, 2005 @ 23:13

  2. It’s a little Californian joke - I call the Netherlands the Polar Circle, I call the Old Country the New Country and the New Country the Old Country.
    I was born in the Mojave Desert so I feel that I have a right to call everyplace that is on the same latitude as Juneau, Alaska (like Amsterdam) the Polar Circle. It’s all relative… on a globe.

    Comment by debra — February 10, 2005 @ 20:05

  3. IC. But I was truly born in Polar Circle. ;-)

    Comment by MA — February 10, 2005 @ 21:17

  4. Yes you were, for the Lowlands are the Deep South.

    Comment by debra — February 10, 2005 @ 21:26

  5. Occitanie pleut parce’que tu n’est pas la. Weird weather here, in the morning a bit of Polar Circle: -1 celsius. In the afternoon around 20 celsius. In the evening a bit of rain (not enough for the garden though)

    Comment by Kristi van Riet — February 11, 2005 @ 22:16

  6. Les PayBas pleut parce’que tu n’est pas ici.
    Walgelijk weer met regen regen en nog een keer regen.
    Vanochtend bv hebben we regen met donder en bliksem.

    Comment by debra — February 13, 2005 @ 8:51

  7. ik krijg ineens zin in hete bliksem! ken je dat?
    (tot morgen!)

    Comment by Kristi van Riet — February 13, 2005 @ 20:36

  8. Ik hou ontzettend van hete bliksem! Wat vind je van hete bliksem met BUTT-WHITE blotebilletjes! Echt Hollands!

    Comment by debra — March 7, 2005 @ 9:58

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