Weird things happen to us here. And I don’t mean just the normal weirdness of negotiating life as a family with three expat homeschooled children in a country of one-child families, compulsory government schooling and people who speak very little English, by and large.
I mean serendipitous weirdness.
One thing we’ve had to get used to here is that many things (dare I say most things) happen without much advance planning. Advance appointments are made only by those who know Western culture well and understand that we Westerners like our plans. Often, we’ll receive a call inviting us to some special event.
“When?” we’ll ask.
The reply? “In an hour.”
Friends still “drop by” here without calling ahead. And things can be called off just as easily as the arrangements were made in the first place. This year, the city’s Chinese New Year fireworks were cancelled (not that you couldn’t see enough right in your own neighborhood).
Last week we had one of those last-minute kind of days. JavaMan received a last-minute call to join his friend on a trip to the countryside, after which they’d have a chance for his friend to introduce him to a man who worked for the government and could advise JavaMan on some business matters.
He came home with this:
According to instructions we located on the internet, pheasants should be hung for three days, after which they can be skinned, and prepared for consumption. JavaMan used the following recipe and cooked dinner, after he skinned and prepared the bird for cooking:
1 young pheasant
2 thin slices bacon
1 c. sweet cream or sour cream
1 c. water
2 tbsp. flour
Draw the pheasant carefully; wash and dry. Rub inside and out with salt. Put the liver and a piece of butter in the pheasant. Fasten bacon across breast. Bake at 350 degrees, basting frequently with 4 teaspoons butter. After it has cooked about 30 minutes, baste with cream and water, a spoonful at a time. Pheasant should cook about 1 1/2 hours. Remove bacon before serving. Stir flour into drippings, brown and add water as needed. Cook 5 minutes. Serve gravy with bird.
Has serendipity found you lately?