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Is eating street food in China an adventure?

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I've been receiving comments and emails lately warning me about the safety of the street food that I eat in my videos. It's old news that food safety scandals are afoot in China, but it's definitely not as bad as the media makes it out to be. As somebody who eats Chinese street food almost everyday, I want to shed some light on this gutter oil and rat meat sensationalism and restore foreigners' courage to try street food in China.

我最近收到很多评论和电子邮件警告我在我视频中吃的街头食品的安全性。在过去新闻中,中国经常发生食品安全丑闻,但它肯定没有媒体宣传的这么差。几乎每天都有人吃中国街头食品,我在这里说明一下最近轰动的地沟油和老鼠肉,并恢复外国人尝试中国街头食品的勇气。

 

It all started with a few people who processed and sold tons of barrels of recycled gutter oil at below-market prices to low-end Chinese street vendors and hole-in-the-wall restaurants. After this ring of illegal oil dealers was uncovered, videos and news stories sensationalizing gutter oil in Chinese street food hit the web. Now, people are concerned that their grub might be cooked with gutter oil.

这一切都始于几个人以低于市场的价格从街头小贩和简陋的餐馆回收地沟油进行加工和销售。这个非法经销商被发现后,视频和新闻以地沟油出现在中国街边摊进行报道。现在,人们经常担心他们的食物可能会含有地沟油。

 

Since I regularly eat in street food stands and hole-in-the-wall restaurants, you might ask, “How do you know you aren't eating gutter oil?” Honestly I can't be sure whether my jianbing guozi was cooked with gutter oil or whether the mutton skewers I devoured last night were actually rat meat, but I ate them anyway, and they tasted heavenly. After almost a year in China, I haven't gotten sick because of street food. Once, I accidentally drank a few cups of unboiled water from the sink. Don't make that mistake.

因为我经常吃街头食品和在简陋的餐馆吃饭,你可能会问,“你怎么知道你没吃到地沟油?“老实说,我不能确定我吃的煎饼果子是否有地沟油,昨晚我吃的煮熟的羊肉串是不是老鼠肉,但我吃了他们,他们很好吃。来到中国将近一年,我么有因为吃街边摊而生病。只有一次,是因为我不小心喝了几杯未煮开的水。不要犯这样的错误。

 

it's impossible to know which stalls have good food, but your instincts are usually a great indicator of what's good and what isn't. My strategy for eating street food in China is simple: If it looks good, I try it. If it tastes good, I eat it. If it tastes like garbage, I spit it out. Rarely do I encounter food that I have to spit out.

我不可能知道哪个摊位的好吃哪个不好吃,你的直觉很重要,什么好,什么不好。我在中国吃街头食品的策略很简单:如果看起来不错,我试试。如果好吃,我就吃。如果它尝起来像垃圾,我就吐出来。我很少遇到我要吐出来的食物。

 

A single Big Mac patty can contain meat from up to a thousand different cows from five different countries. I've met foreigners in China who won't go near street vendors yet they're happy eating in Chinese McDonald's. Fact is, neither one of us knows exactly what we're eating or where our food is coming from.

一个麦当劳巨型汉堡可能包含多达来自五个不同国家的一千种不同的牛肉。我见过有的外国人在中国不会去附近街头吃小摊,然而他们在中国快乐的吃麦当劳。事实是,没有一个人知道我们吃的食物来自哪里。

 

The media has a way of making a big deal about stuff that doesn't have that great of an impact on us (gutter oil, rat meat) because it makes for more head-turning news than the legal everyday stuff that significantly impacts health, like preservatives and an overall poor quality of diet. But that's old news. If you want to avoid eating deep-fried food, don't do it because you're afraid of ‘gutter oil,' do it because deep-fried food is unhealthy. 

这只是媒体炒作大事件的一种方式,但(地沟油、老鼠肉)对我们的影响并不大,因为防腐剂和整体质量差的饮食等日常的东西明显比这些更影响健康,但这是旧新闻。如果你不想吃油炸食物,不要以地沟油为借口,因为油炸食品本身是是不健康的。

 

The production of recycled gutter oil for human consumption is revolting and should result in severe punishment like life imprisonment and in some cases the death penalty, but I'm not going to abstain from eating out because of a few sensational videos and news stories.

回收地沟油生产供人食用的,会招致严重的惩罚,在某些情况下会无期徒刑或死刑。所以我不会因为这些些耸人听闻的视频和新闻报道而放弃外出就餐。

 

My advice: Don't let food scandals frighten you so much that you never allow yourself to experience the greatness of Chinese street food. Your own instincts and perceptions are the most reliable method of determining which food is good and not good.

我的建议是:不要让食品丑闻唬住你,不然你永远无法体验到伟大的中国街头食品。自己的直觉和感知的最可靠的方法,来确定哪些食物是好的和不好的。

2016-06-24

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