Accompany by a Fool to Do Farming
Chapter 27: 想法 (Thought)
It was still early, not time to cook yet so Zhong Ziqi said to Zhao Zheng’an: “Let’s go to the mountain and put the chickens away.”
Zhao Zheng’an immediately put the chickens on a chair before going out happily with his wife.
Zhong Ziqi wanted to go up to the mountains to cut some branches to make a fence for the chickens so that he wouldn’t forget later. The branches in the mountains were not easy to cut because of the humidity. After a few attempts, Zhong Ziqi’s hands became sore,then finally Zhao Zheng’an, who cared for his wife, took over.
Looking at a certain someone who ‘forge ahead with the vigor and vitality of the tiger’,Zhong Ziqi reassured himself that he was in a little ger’s body so it was normal for him to have no strength, as long as he had a man’s heart it would be enough.
Zhong Ziqi didn’t want Zhao Zheng’an to work too hard, so he started picking up branches around the trees, but as he did so, his speed slowed down and Zhong Ziqi’s attention was drawn to the mountain of fruit trees, with ripe fruit scattered all over the place and birds falling in from time to time to peck at it.
Zhong Ziqi was very enthusiastic about the resources in the mountains, if used well it would be money for nothing. So, what can he do with the fruit?
First, you can make canned fruit.
Second, to make dried fruit or jam.
Third, it can be used to make wine.
The first two were not favourable to Zhong Ziqi.The market was too small. It was fine to make a snacks between meals for small amount of money in your spare time, but if you want to make a lot of money, the latter was more reliable.There was no fruit wine in the country, all were high-concentration white wine therefore the lowest alcohol was rice wine, so Zhong Ziqi is still, relatively optimistic about the market for this.
The wine is not a short job, it takes at least a month from brew to finish, not to mention that if you want it to be more aromatic, it will take even longer, so in between, he will have to think of another job.
After the two of them got enough branches, they carried a large bundle on their back while walking home with difficulty. While the sky was not dark yet, they put up the fence, considering that the chickens would grow up later, the fence should be wider and higher to prevent the chickens from flying out.
The sun had already gone down. The sky had turned from bright to grey when they finished it real quick.
“Well, go and rest! You’re hungry, aren’t you? I’ll go and make dinner.” Zhong Ziqi wiped the beads of sweat from his forehead as he told Zhao Zheng’an to rest.
Zhao Zheng’an also wiped the sweat from his face and obediently went to rest.
Zhong Ziqi went into the kitchen, washed his face before he started to cook dinner. He had bought a carp in town today. it seemed that he had never eaten fish since he came here! Since he was not keen on seafood, it was optional so if he hadn’t come across it today, he would have forgotten about this all along the way.
After he filled the basin with water, Zhong Ziqi washed the fish carefully, what he hated most about cooking fish was scraping the scales and cleaning up the innards inside, if he could save,he would save so when he bought the fish he gave an extra 1 wen for the fish seller to clean it up.
Wash the fish, slice it on both sides with a knife and set it aside. Wash the scallion, ginger and hot red pepper before cutting them into julienne strips.
Put firewood on the stove and light it.
Heat a tablespoon of oil in a pan and fry the (鲫鱼)crucian carp until golden brown on both sides before remove it from the pan.
Add another spoon of oil to the pan, quick fry the chinese chive, ginger, garlic and red pepper. Add two spoons of bone broth, salt, sugar, pepper, soy sauce, rice vinegar, rice wine and bring to the boil.In the last step, pour the sauce over the fish then you have a dish of hot and sour fish.
There is still a lot of rice left over from this morning so he put it in the pot and smothered it while it was still hot. The weather was hot, so it was good to eat it cold.
While this was going on, Zhong Ziqi tripped over another cucumber and a persimmon with sugar.When the cold noodles business couldn’t be done anymore, there were leftovers vegetables, since his family had no vegetables and he didn’t want to go to Wang Cuihua’s house to pick it, the vegetables were left to eat at home.
When the meal was served, Zhao Zheng’an was clearly fond of the spicy and sour fish, which was even more expensive than meat.Although Qing Shui Town was near by the water, there was a lot of seafood, but the price was still high, this fish can’t be bought without 8 or 9 wen. Ordinary people were not willing to spend the money to buy a fish since it was not easy to cook it so if you can’t make it taste okay, most of them would just give up.Besides, if there was a river in the hills or somewhere, they could go fishing if they wanted to eat it.
The Zhao family probably eats fish no more than three times a year. Not to mention the time after Zhao Zheng’an became a fool, he could not even eat enough rice,so it was even harder to eat a piece of meat, let alone fish. He showed by his actions that he loved it.
Zhong Ziqi saw this and had to consider, from now on, every now and then, buying one to satisfy his cravings, but this picky eater could not be accustomed to, since the family often eats meat, Zhong Ziqi found that Zhao Zheng’an only picked meat to eat, vegetarian dishes were ignored, so he had no choice but to supervise him. Eating meat alone, the nutrition was not balanced.
After giving a chopstick of cucumber to Zhao Zheng’an, Zhong Ziqi admonished, “Be careful, don’t get stuck!”
“Hn hn” Zhao Zheng’an nodded absent-mindedly.
In Feng Yang City, inside a large luxurious house, a lean man with white hair respectfully escorted a middle-aged man out the door. Then, with a grim look on his face, he returned to the house, swept all the steaming cups of tea off the table and onto the floor.
A foot stepping in at the door paused for a moment, then slightly revealed,a seductive looking ger who was smiling, entered: “Master, who has upset you so much? ”
The man who had been so eagerly attentive in the past, did not come closer this time, but looked at him with a gloomy face:”Tell your little brother to behave himself, or he’ll die without knowing how! Do not open the dyehouse when you’re given a little colour! What the hell! If anything happens, don’t come to me.”
[Note on 别给点颜色就开染坊/ Do not open the dyehouse when you’re given a little colour: It means “tolerate you,but you start to take an inch and start pushing your nose on my face”. As if you give others a certain benefit, the other party will start to become proud and become arrogant.]
The charming face of that ger froze as a flash of fear passed through his eyes.
The man was lazy to care about him, he had always turned a blind eye to the things his concubine did. Outside, it was rumoured that he was very fond of this concubine. He sneered, if it wasn’t for his pretty face, he would have dumped him.He had always thought he had a good sense of self-awareness.But now he seems to be a flower vase (figurative for ‘just a pretty face’) too.But the Zhang family’s ger is quite nice, gentle and soft plus good at understanding others. He should pick a good day and bring him back.
The next day, Zhong Ziqi tucked away the two recipes he had written down in the dark last night and went into town with Zhao Zheng’an. Jin Sheng had been waiting for him for a long time. It was still in the same room as yesterday.Zhong Ziqi didn’t say any nonsense.Zhong Ziqi took the two recipes out and gave them to Jin Sheng.
One was the three-cup chicken and another one was the crisp-fried crab palm. The latter dish was written by Zhong Ziqi based on the restaurant’s condition, which half of its menu was seafood.He wrote a seafood recipe that was just good and correct analysis.
When he saw that Jin Sheng was looking carefully, Zhong Ziqi was still a little nervous, he didn’t know what kind of dishes were available in the restaurant, so he didn’t know if he had written it down suitably.
“Qin Zi!” Master Jin shouted.
Not long after that, the shop attendant pushed the door in: “Boss.”
“Give these two dish recipes to the chef and tell him to make it.” The shop attendant took the recipes and went out.
Zhong Ziqi knew that this was to check the dishes, and he smiled: “I don’t know if I’ve written it down to the point.”
He shook his head, “Qi Ge’er is intelligent. I’ve never seen this recipe before.”
“It’s all just something I usually make up myself.” Zhong Ziqi smiled shyly.
“By the way, I’ve taken care of the matter with Chang Shun, I believe that as long as he is not brain-dead, he will not come back to trouble you again.” Jin Sheng said.
“Really? Then, thank you so much, Master Jin.” Zhong Ziqi said in surprise, not expecting the efficiency to be quite fast, so indeed the rumours were not false.
The two of them sat in the room, listening to the noise outside, chatting back and forth. As time passed, there was a sudden knock on the door of the room.
“Come in!” The one who pushed the door in was still the shop attendant called Qin Zi,at this moment he was holding a tray with two plates of still-hot dishes, full of aroma, which he already smelled right at the time he entered the door.
Jin Sheng picked up his chopsticks and took a taste of each one. He couldn’t help but give a thumbs up.
Zhong Ziqi was very calm as he handed Zhao Zheng’an a pair of chopsticks, signalling that he could eat it. He tasted it himself and said, “The chef at your restaurant is very good, I didn’t expect it to be so good the first time he made it.”
He smiled proudly, his chef was not comparable to those from this small place, he was from his own family.
Zhong Ziqi and Zhao Zheng’an dined at the restaurant. They took away 12 taels of silver with them. Before they left, Boss Jin told them to come back to him if they had any good things and he would not treat them badly.