But dad never lost his love for newspapers during his life time. He made sure that we read well every day.
Now that's a horrible introduction to this post!! But that was exactly the background and reason why my siblings and I love reading newspapers and have a special spot in our minds for newspapers from various perspectives.
We love collecting stories and photos related to newspapers too....Like we would never forget the movie Angela's Ashes ..how the protagonist licked the oil off the newspaper or how newspapers were used to wrap food in Sibu etc....
Here are some photos of the old relationship between newspapers and Foochow toufoo......
If you were born in Sibu and are now middle aged and perhaps even older you would remember that you and your mother used to buy tou foo packed in this way. I have not seen this done in recent years in Sibu but I was delighted to meet this scene in Marudi recently.
I remember too that we would dry the paper (our reduce and reuse early years) and read the old newspapers and then stack them up to be used as "fire starters" on our Foochow stove. Old newspapers were useful for all sorts of other activities too.
Although Marudi is not exactly a Foochow town I was quite sure that the toufoo seller was a Foochow and I was right. But I cannot say that it is only the Foochows who wrap their toufoo in this traditional way. A layer of newspapers and then a layer of cardboard would prevent the toufoo from breaking up...especially if one is riding a bicycle and dangling a packet of toufoo from the handlebar!!
I have done that! Been there!
Today the traditional Foochow toufoo is still being made in Marudi by two men in particular and also ..at home. Thus the cottage industry is still thriving in a way but one of the vendors did say that his well educated son would not be carrying on his trade." No one wants to learn this any more!" he said.
Tofu or bean curd is a food made by coagulating soy milk and then pressing the resulting curds into soft white blocks. There are many different varieties of tofu, including fresh tofu and tofu that has been processed in some way. Tofu has a very subtle taste.
Tofu is thought to have originated in ancient China. It has spread to other parts of Asia. (Wikipedia)
May I am wrong, but the photo above shows the Foochow Tou Wan, or South East Asian tofu cake.......very good for making salads in a fusion kind of cooking. (See my future post on this...)And stir fried with some minced meat it is an excellent dish. Whenever I see this I would dream of my mother's Foochow meatballs which is one of a kind in this world.
Is it true that tou foo's texture is different from one locality to another because of the quality of the stream or spring water? I would like to see Sarawak rivers to become unpolluted again . If it is only to make the best toufoo in the world!! Please...Sarawak can/boleh!! Boleh? Can?