Tián jī 田鸡 is not 天 鸡 “Heavenly Chicken”

I really have to hand it to the Chinese for their super creative way of naming things and making the most awful stuff sound nice and grand 😀

For example, “fong zhao” (in Cantonese) or “Phoenix Wings” are actually:

Chicken claws!!! LOL

I love chicken claws since my beloved grandmother served braised chicken claws (or chicken feet) at the dinner table so it’s finger-licking good to me but I know some people recoil at the idea of eating “claws”.

Actually, chicken wings are pretty much like the quintessential spicy American buffalo wings.

Chinese-style spicy chicken wings are marinated with cut fresh chillies, and probably vinegar and salt because they have a tangy flavor.

Recently, I ordered some take-away and I was cracking my head for something suitable that the kid could eat i.e. steamed fish, steamed pork, egg-based dish, tofu etc.

I told the waitress / cashier / receptionist that I wanted something soft that was suitable for children. She recommended me some “Tián jī“.

I was like, “Shen me shi tián jī?”

Of course, that’s a pretty dumb question because how the heck is she going to explain to me over the phone, right?

Anyway, she did and in the end, I said OK because she said that it’s “nice and tender.”

Luckily, Hubby came home at about that time and casually asked:

“What’s for dinner?”

When I told him what I’d ordered, he said:

“Do you know that you’ve just ordered FROG???”


I quickly cancelled the order and replaced it with an order of tofu or something else.

Brrrrrr…just the thought of these slimy, warty creatures gives me the creeps, what more of eating them!

It doesn’t help either that my boy’s favorite Chinese songs has this line:

Wo shi yi ge xiao qingwa…” (I’m a little frog)


Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Angeleyes Link

    My mom just told me that she will cook tian-ji for the kids when we go to KL!

    Hey, tian-ji jou (frog porridge) is very yummy you know???!!! hehehehehe

  • Chew Lee Link

    i love the frog leh, especially in kong pau style.. meat is tender and juicy…

  • Shooi Link

    Hey…”Foong Chau” means Phoenix Claws.. 🙂

    And Angeleyes is right…Tian Ji Porridge is very very yummy!! And a lot of people say Tian Ji is actually good because it is very “cheng” (cleansing??), maybe that’s why the lady recommend it for your kids.

  • Shooi Link

    And oh ya..it Tian Chi means “Paddy Field Chicken” in direct translation. The word Tian is not the “sky” word.

    They call it that because it taste like chicken but they are found at the paddy field.

    Sorry…if i am too kepo ..

  • Kit Link

    Angeleyes – Wow, your Mom’s “tian ji” jou would taste nice!

    Chew Lee – I love kong poh style! Tell you what – can I visit you one day, you cook that dish and serve it WITHOUT telling me that it’s Kermit’s cousin? Hubby may want to try that on me one day, the cruel man.

    Shooi – Sorry, we’ve always called it “phoenix wings” but I never knew that “chau” means wings. Please excuse this banana…

    Thanks for its proper name – “paddy chicken”. I know them as bullfrogs so I was still scratching my head about the field part…

    Cleansing? Frogs eat bugs, which contain a lot of bacteria. Let me find out what bugs eat…:D

  • a-moms-diary Link

    Haha…this is so funny. And I have to admit I love tian ji also – kong poh or keong chong.

  • Kit Link

    A Mom’s Diary – You too? It sounds like this is a Cantonese favorite ^_^

  • Chew Lee Link

    ok, deal, if we can arrange a meeting, I would cook u this dish.. hehehe.. but I dont know whether I can get this in Germany or not… my kwai lo hubs doesnt eat this… but I love tian ji… yummy..

  • Ooh…I’ll definitely look forward to it LOL