Food

Street food in Dakar & suburbs 4: the construction

On every street corner, too, various street food outlets compete for customers with other types of businesses. These places are either "canteens" or garages of houses transformed into catering spaces with a large table and wooden benches around for customers, or metal or wooden kiosks glued to a wall or by the roadside.

The materials used are numerous: stainless steel or plastic or glass containers, spoons, dishes, a gas bottle or coal furnace, plastic basins for laundry, a few 20-litre oil cans recycled into water reserves and a stack of newspaper used as packaging.

Practice for high quality

The first step in making steamed, pickled tea the traditional way is to evenly lay out the tea leaves on a reed or bamboo mat. Next, the tea is rolled out by hand. This is done by placing both hands side by side and gently pressing down on the tea leaves with the lower palm of both hands.The steady back and forth motion of the slowly rolls the tea leaves. More and more pressure is added as the tea leaves begin to roll and curl up. This process takes about 15 minutes. Locals may use tea rolling machines if they are available. 

Traditional Soybean Cury

Famous Traditional PaOh Soybean Cury

This one of the most famous traditonal foods in our country, Myanmar, especially in Southern Shan State.

The PaOh ethnic group has been used to this kind of food since their ancestors. Soybean cury and the PaOh ethnic people are inseparable from their society.

They always use every ingredient (soybean, chilli, salt, tomato, peanut oil) in these foods from their local resources without buying from outsides.

Problem of yellow color ( dye )

This report released by the Ministry of Health states their persistent monitoring and testing of food products to ensure health safety and promote the well-being of citizens. It further explains that on lab examinations, 43 brands of tea (pickled) on the Myanmar market contained significant traces of Auramine O. Auramine O is a diarylmethane dye used in fabric coloring processes and despite lacking any immediate affect on consumer health, is hazardous and harmful to the kidneys and liver, therefore unsuitable for consumption.

Farmers and loan money “Amadaw Kyay” under BSPP

Daw May Myo Khine, 49 years old, who once lived in Sittwe, capital of Rakhine, and whose grandfather and father owned many rice farms explained that under the Burmese Socialist Programme Party, some farmers grew two different kinds of rice. They grew low quality rice, which they would sell to the government at the prescribed price and good quality variety, which they would eat themselves. The government gave farmers loans called “Amadaw Kyay”  for growing rice. In return, the farmers had to sell the harvested rice to the government.

The history of tea leaf

Image depicts a statue erected on Mt. Loi Saing (Paddamyar Taung in Burmese), near Taung Pė Village, situated within Namsam Township, northern Shan State. The statue goes that when the Burmese king Alaungsithu travelled across his new kingdom around the 5th -6th century, he found Palaung people at Loi San Mountain in Southern Shan State. When he found them to be poor and struggling, he gave them laphet seeds believing it would help them find money for their family.

Unusual terms used to refer rice under BSPP

There existed unusual terms used to refer certain types of rice during the BSPP government. Here are three examples. U Myo Win Than is a 55 years old Burmese man who used to live in Myittha, Kyaukse district, Mandalay.

He explained that “Yar Kyaw Sa Par” refers to the variety which exceeds a hundred tinns (Burmese unit of volume measurement that equals to 40.9148 L) per acre when harvested.

Names of rice mainly grown in Rakhine under Burma Socialist Programme Party (BSPP) from 1962-1988

Ma Mya Than, 58 years old, is a middle class Rakhine (Arakanese) lady who lives in Buthidaung, a town in northern Rakhine. She used to sell various varieties of rice. Rakhine, situated on the western coast of Myanmar, is rich with natural resources including fish, timber, oil and gas. According to her, although Rakhine exported many acres of rice under Burmese Socialist Programme Party for years, there were around five types of rice that farmers in Rakhine mainly grew.

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