Sunday, September 25, 2016

More of Sazhou Night Market.


Give us free time and where do we go? Back to the market - to the Sazhou Night Market to be more precise.

We got dropped off back at our hotel around lunchtime and pretty much immediately headed back to Sazhou, ostensibly to find a place to eat lunch.  The market  flows into a neighborhood and at this time of day, the whole area is pretty much empty, exactly like it was yesterday.


We were an apathetic foursome when it came to finding a place to eat. There was not a single place that satisfied all of us we just opted to hit up the food stands.  It was a picnic lunch today. :-)

My eyes and stomach were drawn in by this guy making those yummy braised pork belly sandwiches or was it his cute pink apron that first caught my eye? :-)

In any case,  I had to have me one of those sandwiches...to start  :-)


Green chili is added to the chopped pork mix for a bit of kick.  



Verdict?  Delicious braised pork belly that had been soaked in the sauce just before being piled on the bread which was soft on the inside and crispy flaky on the outside.  There were bits of meat and fat and chili.  It was drool worthy to look at and so delicious that I devoured the thing in just a few bites.  I had to have me another one.


It was a picnic lunch today.  The gals are seated on the right and the pork sandwich guy is under the red banner on the left.
After our quick bite, we just strolled around the 'hood.  Sadly, nothing really to inspire me to take photos but here are a few.

A new  mosque will soon open its doors.


One of the entrances to Sazhou Market.

By the time late afternoon rolled around, Sazhou was like a whole different place, filled with local people strolling and shopping.


Later, we came back for dinner and I could hardly recognize the place as not only were the lights on but it was now packed with people!


Yesterday, we had walked through a part of the market, housed under a covered pavilion, where there were at least two dozen if not more restaurants.  We decided to go back there, certain that we would find a place for dinner.


As so often happens, we were lured in by the smell of food being grilled over open flame.  The small restaurant only had a few tables and there was an available one just for us.  I let the girls do the ordering.  My only request was for a skewer of beef.  None of us were that hungry so it was a modest dinner overall.

While we waited for our food, I decided to watch the cook in action.



Sitting right outside the front door was this large charcoal fired steamer.  The skewers of meat were steamed before they were put over the flame to finish cooking.


The meat was dressed with spices before being put over the charcoal flame.


This one place was really popular as people not only lined up to get a table inside but there were quite a few to go orders as well. The cook was nonstop busy!

See the gals sitting inside?

If you're a true carnivore, there is something very intoxicating about the smell of fat melting over flame.  Seriously.



Watch the cook at work.  First he oils the skewers of steamed meat, salts them, spices them, brushes some marinade over them, then constantly flips the skewers so the meat  just *kisses* the flames.


The meat was good but what was even better were the potato chips.  I don't know what fat they were fried in but we devoured this plateful in no time!  The chili powder looks spicy hot but it's really not or else it really is and I'm just immune to it after nearly four weeks of eating spicy foods!


After dinner, we did a post dinner stroll through the market.  Now, the place was hopping with diners at places that had been shuttered up during the day.



The dried fruit and nut vendors were still out doing business but at night, their carts took on a very different look.


This afternoon, we had walked past a section of restaurants specializing mainly in Chinese Muslim food.


At that time a few of the places were just beginning to get set up for the nightly service.  Now, full service was well under way, the diners were out in force, and waiters were at the ready, menus in hand, to lure us in.  We were too stuffed to eat any more.  That and well, it didn't look like they were serving food that we hadn't already eaten.  I think I'm ready for something different.


Our walk back to the hotel took us past the statue of the apsara. Lit up, she looks magical.


It was another early evening for us.  Mal and I have no problem chatting the night away. Tomorrow we have to catch an afternoon flight to our next China destination - Zhangjiajie.  I've enjoyed my time in Dunhuang and I can't believe how quickly time has flown by.  I really don't want to dwell on it but I leave for home in just a few days :-(

Goodnight from Dunhuang!

The view from our hotel room.  The apsara statue is in that lighted area on the left.