Posted by: Anna | October 14, 2011

Weirdness at the Chinese Market

There’s really nothing else to call this. The market in China is full of some crazy weird stuff for a Westerner. Only about half the stuff for sale is even identifiable. It’s greatness, if you like that sort of thing.

These live bugs are available to take home for snacking. Mmmm...crunchy!

But maybe you aren't in the mood for roaches. Perhaps a small bag of live frogs is more your fancy. (Sorry for the terrible quality of these pics - it was dark and they were moving)

These tiny peppers are not hot, according to my cooking instructor. They are beautiful.

This is my favorite picture from the trip to the market - chive flowers.

Absurdly huge winter squash - although in China they are always this size. Looks like an enormous cucumber. Seems like a pain to lug home from the market.

Here's something I have no idea what to do with, or even where to start. What do you use dried bat for? In the background you can also spot dried frog.

China is way ahead of the trend to eat "nose to tail". Here you can see noses and tails available for your delight.

From the cages, a shopper can select which live chicken or rabbit is for dinner. There is a station where they will butcher it, or it can be taken home live for those DIYers. Part of what is so foreign to me is that all protein is sold live or dried - there is almost no fresh meat available. Part of this is probably storage issues (traditionally no power in the market, so no refrigeration).

And yes, I did see the infamous dog meat for sale, and it was creepy. The dog carcasses hang whole in a stand for selection, but they are dead. There was also chopped up dog meat for those who didn’t want to select a cut from the whole dog.


  1. I didn’t know there was a trend to eat “nose to tail”!

  2. I think if I lived in China I would be a vegetarian – love the Chive flowers and pepper photos!

  3. I went to markets in China where, just as with the chickens and rabbits, you could pick out which live dog you wanted. If you went in the morning and afternoon/evening, you could hear noticeably less barking. Horrifying, fantastically interesting stuff. Also, dog is delicious if prepared right (sorry to all those I offended). (Aunt) Sandy, it is almost impossible to be a vegetarian in China – they do not understand the concept of not eating meat.

  4. when jordon and i went to china town in san franciso we stumbled upon these treasures as well. the bullfrogs were jumping out of buckets, fish were flopping on the tables and people were sneezing into their hands and then reaching into giant barrels of dried fish eyes, we vowed to never revisit that part of the town. looks like you guys got thei first class version of we saw. and you better have not eaten dog. thats just sad.and cruel

  5. I especially like the cucumber/squash.

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