Eating Pig Ears on a Stick in Changsha, Hunan, China
A few axioms of food will hold true no matter where you are in the world: everything tastes better with melted cheese, everything tastes better fried, and everything tastes better on a stick. At least two of these universal truths are upheld by the street vendors who come out at night in Changsha, the capital city of Hunan Province in the belly of southern China. The weather will always oblige; the vendors will always overcome any language barriers by shouting and pointing. What better way to taste the city than with a flash-fried pig ear on a stick? Or how about pig tail? Little white pillows of sticky rice buns filled with congealed pig’s blood are a deal at three-a-stick. The local specialty, stinky tofu, is not spared; lotus root, sausage chunks, and squid are all impaled and doomed for the hungry bubbling fryer balancing on a rickety cart. You’ll want to try them all, and you can: every stick is just one kwai.