Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Strange Taste Horsebeans?

What are Strange Taste Horsebeans? I picked up a small package of them at a rest stop on a bus trip from Chengdu, Sichuan to Chongqing. They're strange alright; crunchy, sweet, hot and salty in succession. Not bad. A nice change from tortilla chips and dip or Cheez Doodles. But what's with the name? It's like this all over China. English is in, it's fashion, it's the way that the Chinese think that they can communicate with all non Chinese speakers. But the differences between Chinese, a language based on characters and English, a language based on letters combined with the easy availability of inaccurate Internet based machine translations make for awkward Chinglish. Horsebeans are more commonly known in English as broad beans or Fava beans. Sounds better already, no? The "strange taste" is indeed a unique taste. Chongqing's Unique Tasting Fava Beans, now those might sell in the export market because the product ain't bad and there's nothing currently like it on this side of the Pacific.

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