Tuesday, July 28, 2009

FridayShoot Out: Outdoor Food: Steam Boat


http://mytownshootout.blogspot.com/

Let's eat Steamboat may incur a Huh??? look on your friends' faces. What is a steam boat?

Remember Genghis Khan, Kublai Khan and Marco Polo? During the time of the Mongolian Statesmen in Chinese history when the Great Wall of China was built, the fierce nomadic soldiers spread terror to China. Legend has it that the soldiers wore a metal hat, when it was time to cook their meals, they simply inverted their hats and used them to cook their meals. From them, came the Steamboat.

When I was little, my parents had a traditional steamboat. It was like a donut with the chimney in the middle. Mum would drop burning charcoal into the chimney, and on the donut ring, she had boiling soup. Thin slivers of meat of all sorts, vegetables, mushroom, tofu, noodles are quickly cooked. We used little basket like ladles to scoop up the food we like. Then we drank the delicious soup which is packed with all the goodness of the meat and vegetable stock.

These days, the cumbersome charcoal steamboats have given way to electric or gas ones. The chimney is gone, and it is more like cooking on the table. I am a person of nostalgia. I lament for Mum's steam boat.

This photo was taken on New Year's day. It was summer in New Zealand. My host, J had the steam boat outside her patio. We all sat outside eating, likened to what the Mongolians did, outside their tent.

20 comments:

Kerri said...

Looks delicious!

~JarieLyn~ said...

This is very interesting. I love the history behind your photo. My sister-in-law took me to a place for lunch one day called shabu shabu. The way the food was cooked it sounds similar to your steam boat. It was extremely tasty. I loved the thinly sliced meats and veggies that were cooked in the sauce. YUMMY!

Cynthia L. H. said...

Fascinating! Love the lesson on culture and history.
...and the photo is making me hungry!
;^)

Doreen said...

I have learned something today thanks to you. great post!

M.Kate said...

aiya...so mouth watering, I am drooling on my laptop lah!! My mom made the best steamboat ever! She'll make her own yong tau foo from fresh fish meat -- never processed y.taufoo in her house. One day when you do pop over, we must meet...hugs/M

Kerri said...

Hi Ann. Thanks for stopping by my book blog today. I read about 1 book a week - which seems slow compared to many other book bloggers I follow. Can you point me to the synopsis so that I can read it. I'm sure it is staring me in the face, but it's late. I'd love to read it.

Jama said...

It's great to have steamboat when having company, not much cooking to do, everybody have to do their own! yummy!

Butler and Bagman said...

Great story...I love when I learn things from posts.

Denise said...

how facinating - looks yummy!

Gordon said...

Nice history lesson. Thanks, Ann.

Chef E said...

I love this Ann! History, and food to boot! I wonder if you mind if I share this with my friends on my other food blog?

Carrie said...

I enjoyed the story behind your picture. I, too, am nostalgic and hope you come across a traditional steamboat someday!
I am now hungry for Mongolian Grill...

GingerV said...

another example of how moderizing is not necessarily improving...
the soup sounds very good and somewhat oriental (?) it seems that along the way I heard about the american cowboy making coffee by throwing a hot rock into a pot of water with coffee beans....
very good post.

Sara Williams said...

That food looked so scrummy. Thanks for telling us a bit about the history too x

Rebecca said...

Very interesting. Thanks for sharing.

Sandy said...

So very interesting and educational for Friday photo shoot out. Thanks for sharing

sciencegirl said...

How very interesting. The metal helmets worn by soldiers during the world wars (especially the 1st) also often used them to hold hot food.
Nice post!

REDLAN said...

We really missed traditional food. Today, a lot of new menus. Steam sounds great! Am pretty sure it taste so great! Thanks for sharing

Sandra Leigh said...

Oh, yes - I've had Steamboat, long ago at a friend's house. I think she called it Mongolian Fire Pot or something like that. It was wonderful. Now you've given me the munchies. Oh, dear.

J.C. said...

Thanks Ann for your comment left on my blog in Aug. Sorry that I only found it out today. Hope you had a wonderful time at the steamboat then.