A clear and melodious sound
Instantly, the liquid of egg white was scattered evenly on each prawn without any splashing onto the tails. The yolk was nevertheless left pristine in the bowl, intact.
Although astonishing, this skill was still reasonable. After all, they had seen Yuan Zhou knock eggs with one hand for quite some time now. Such skill in tossing the egg white evenly with the strength of his wrist, however, was only just now seen for the very first time.
“Dong Dong”, Yuan Zhou turned around, stepped backward, and then opened the pot filled with sea salt with one hand while scooping up half a spoon with the other and then sprinkling the sea salt evenly on the prawn tails.
It required several minutes to pickle the prawn tails. During this gap, Yuan Zhou began to take out the side dishes for preliminary processing.
The side dish of Phoenix-Tail Prawns was peas, of which the first fresh harvest was used. The instructions: Peel off the peapod and take out the peas carefully without scratching their skin; after the peas are washed and dried, prepare a pot of clear water and pour them into the boiling water; after slight stirring, scoop them up quickly and put into the icy snow lotus-water.
Provided by the system, the snow lotus water was taken from the first snow on the snow lotus. It was completely pure and free from pollution, with a spark of the cold scent of snow lotus. When the snow melted into water and was left there until it was no longer so cold, it couldn’t be any better to soak the peas in.
The several minutes during which the peas were processed were just suitable to pickle the river prawns with.
Yuan Zhou took out a small pan and put it on the stove. When it was heated until it was slight smoking, he immediately poured some fat into the pan.
Upon touching the pan, the fat emitted a delicious fragrance, which smelled unlike the taste of any normal cooking oil. Without any underlying offensive smells, its scent was almost bland.
“Boss Yuan, your range hood is pretty nice. Instead of any greasy flavor, there’s even some rich fragrance.” watching Yuan Zhou heating the edible oil, Wu Zhou heaved a sigh with emotion.
“It’s not the range hood that is good. It’s the cooking oil.” Wu Hai said contemptuously.
“It doesn’t make any difference.” Wu Zhou didn’t believe he was wrong at all. After all, there wasn’t any oily smell. Rather it should be that he had never smelt the scent of oil fumes at this restaurant before.
Having checked that the oil temperature was more or less good, Yuan Zhou picked up a prawn at once and covered the body with a thin layer of white starch. He then began to pour it into the heated oil in the pan.
Every fried prawn was in a half-moon-shape with the tail tilting upward. Placed on the plate like that, they were already partially resembling a phoenix tail. For the used heating oil, Yuan Zhou simply poured it into the rubbish bin after a single fry.
Afterwards, he changed to another wok and poured a little more cooking oil into it, letting it heat up. Then, he continued pouring the washed peas inside and stir-fried them for a little while before pouring another half a bowl of broth, several pieces of rock salt, a little rice wine and some sauces into the wok.
When the broth changed to a milky white color, he immediately tossed the river prawns in the wok to stir-fry.
While stir-frying with one hand, he picked up a small bottle and scattered some clear oil evenly onto the prawns with the other. The time of stir-frying was quite short. Just in a little moment, Yuan Zhou scooped up the prawns into two white plates separately. Naturally, even scooping dishes up required skill.
Yuan Zhou nevertheless did it well. Leaving aside that 8 prawns were evenly on each plate, the prawn tails were placed in a circle neatly with the center left empty. Yuan Zhou took out a length of brown, one-finger-thickness and trunk-looking stuff and put it upright at the center of the plate.
Having picked up a lavender radish, he began to sculpt a flower. With radish chips periodically fluttering into the water sink below, exquisite phoenix tree flowers came into being in Yuan Zhou’s hands.
In a blink of an eye, Yuan Zhou decorated the phoenix tree flowers onto the trunk. Matched with several verdant vegetable leaves, it was like a blossoming phoenix willow tree. Circles of white prawns and red tails were laid out in the plate with a vivid phoenix tree in the center.
With the flames curling up, the dish appeared like a burning flame, as if a phoenix were resting in the phoenix tree and reborn in the fire.
“Phoenix-Tail Prawns, for you two gentlemen.” Yuan Zhou carried the dishes out and handed them to Wu Hai and Zhao Yingjun.
“Boss Yuan, this dish has a really nice plating and presentation.” taking his plate, Wu Hai turned around in a circle and commented in surprise.
“I want to savor the taste, yet I’m afraid of damaging such a delicate and pristine dish.” looking at the beautiful and smooth piece of art, Zhao Yingjun didn’t know which prawn he should choose to eat first.
“Never mind that. If you don’t want to eat it, let me help you.” sitting at the side, Wu Zhou watched the dish and couldn’t help drooling. He then said rudely.
“No need. I shall eat the first.” while speaking, he picked up a prawn with the chopsticks.
When he went out to Jin’ling City for business travel, Zhao Yingjun had a love affair, starting from Phoenix-Tail Prawns and also ending up with Phoenix-Tail Prawns. Hence, he had a special feeling towards this dish. Otherwise, he would never order a dish costing more than 1000 RMB for just a single serving.
The prawn between the chopsticks was spotlessly white in the front. The closer to the tail one looked, the redder it became, like the vivid flames of a phoenix.
Stuffed into the mouth and given a bite, the prawn tasted incomparably tender and smooth. The most wonderful thing was that although it tasted exceptionally fresh and delicate, the prawn nevertheless carried a spark of faint fragrance, like the taste of an unknown flower.
When chewed carefully, the prawn meat merged various tastes, which didn’t deprive the prawns of their freshness, moreover strengthened that. The only thing missing was the underlying offensive smell.
“Not only does the shape look like a phoenix tail, but also the taste was as pure and fresh as phoenix tails.” after gulping down a mouthful of the prawn, Zhao Yingjun sighed with infinite emotion.
“It’s absolutely delicious. You talk too much. Let me eat another one.” while Zhao Yingjun was carefully savoring the prawn, Wu Zhou seized the chance to pick up another one and stuff it into his mouth.
“We made a deal that you can eat only one.” the current manner of Zhao Yingjun was like that of Wu Zhou 15 minutes ago, incredibly annoyed and jealous.
“No, no. I ate too quickly just now and didn’t manage to get the taste.” staring at the dish of Phoenix-Tail Prawns in front of him, Wu Zhou felt like being scratched in the heart by a cat. The scent curling up into his nose tempted him to eat the dish, like a little hook.
“You did that on purpose. So, no way you can eat more.” Zhao Yingjun refused him decisively.
“You are so mean.” the Clear Broth Noodle Soup that he ordered hadn’t been served, thus he shifted his sight to Wu Hai, who was seated beside him, at once.
Wu Hai was so sensitive that he noticed the greedy sight immediately. Then he pulled the plate farther from Wu Zhou with a sound of “Zi” and didn’t forget to say, “I am not well acquainted with you.”
“But we just talked.” Wu Zhou frankly pointed out the fact that Wu Hai had ridiculed him just now.
“Misconception,” Wu Hai denied without any hesitation. He turned his head back and concentrated on eating his Phoenix-Tail Prawns.
“Two servings of Clear Broth Noodle Soup.” just when Wu Zhou looked from left to right, Yuan Zhou carried two bowls of Clear Broth Noodle Soup to him.
“Eat your noodles. Stop thinking of the prawns anymore.” Zhao Yingjun carried up one bowl of the noodle soup and handed it to Wu Zhou.
“The noodles were yet entertained to you by me.” Wu Zhou whispered.
“That’s because you have gotten the bonuses.” Zhao Yingjun said to the point.
“Alright. I eat my noodles.” instantly, Wu Zhou got speechless. He took up the bowl and gulped down two mouthful of the broth, finding himself calming down. Anyhow, there was still the delicious Clear Broth Noodle Soup that he could eat.
Zhao Yingjun nevertheless looked repeatedly at his Clear Broth Noodle Soup and once again smelled the scent. However, he still ended up dropping it to the side and began to eat his Phoenix-Tail Prawns blissfully.
However carefully and slowly he chewed and swallowed, 8 Phoenix-Tail Prawns couldn’t last for long. At that time, Wu Zhou had already started eating the Clear Broth Noodle Soup delightedly.
Despite that, Zhao Yingjun was still awfully conflicted. After all, he truly didn’t like eating noodles. To eat or not to eat, this was a serious question.