I love a hot breakfast but it’s usually not convenient for me to buy zhōu (粥) or xī fàn (稀饭) also known as congee, gruel or porridge in the English-speaking world because I’m always in a rush nowadays.
For a while, I packed sandwiches to work because I’m so hungry by the time I reach the workplace that I’d gobble them up on the public bus, which attracts quite a bit of stares since the sandwich is not a common item on the Chinese breakfast menu.
One morning, a couple of students invited me to join them for breakfast and I was curious about what the young girl was taking for herself and her handsome boyfriend.
I know, you may be thinking why I’m being such a third wheel lamp but both of them are in my class, they’re nice so I felt OK. Plus, they speak quite good English
Here goes one of my favourite hot and vegetarian Chinese breakfast:
油条 (yóu tiáo) with dòu jiāng (豆浆)
The hot soy bean milk is served in a bowl like a bowl of congee or porridge. Then, you pick a piece of dough stick and put it in. The dough stick is a bit on the sweet side while the soy bean milk is bland thus you get a nice combination.
A simple, protein-rich (except for the simple carbohydrate of the dough stick) and vegetarian breakfast – perfect for people on the go
Now I understand what my students mean when they say that they’ve had dòu jiāng (豆浆) for breakfast!