Chinese Churros

All cultures claim complete uniqueness when it comes to the things they eat. Such is the feeling we Spanish people have about our beloved churros. So what a surprise to find morning churrerias that spring up early at dawn to provide a breakfast of churros to the Chinese! Granted Chinese eating churro or you tiao is vastly […] Read More

Smoked Tofu

Thriving in a Chinese Kitchen (Nov 2014)

Cooking like the Chinese can be extremely rewarding, fast and easy on the pocket; even if only a couple of times a week! Armed with a cleaver, a chopping block and a wok you are ready to go. But where do you learn to cook Chinese food in Dalian? Unfortunately there are no schools or […] Read More


East meets West in a Tea Cup

I accidentally bumped into these Asianera bone china tea cups in a Xintandi shop in Shanghai and I could not resist buying them. They are a fusion of Chinese and Western tea cups.  The tea cups are tiny like the Chinese ones. They make our weekend oolong tea sessions feel even more luxurious. Asianera is […] Read More


Muslim Street Xi’an – A Food Feast

An unmissable food place in China is Muslim Street in Xi’an. Although locals deem it too touristy, I have to say it is fascinating to see so many food vendors cooking their dishes from scratch as if you were walking inside a cookbook of Chinese Muslim Food, which by the way I have not been […] Read More

Espresso Granita

Thriving in a Chinese Kitchen (Sep 2014)

People who seem to cook out of thin air always surprise us, but the undisclosed reason for their success is a well-stocked pantry. Here in China food shopping can be stressful, especially at the beginning when you don’t know where to shop and what is available. Metro, Carrefour, Ikea and local markets are all great […] Read More

September Cover

Focus on Dalian September articles

  My latest articles for Focus on Dalian are here!  For this issue the International Kitchen section focused on Spain and the fabulous romesco sauce.  The Thriving in a Chinese Kitchen section focused on where and what to shop in a city like Dalian.  I shared my tips with readers on my favorites food shops […] Read More

Broken Biscuit Cake

Thriving in a Chinese Kitchen (Jul 2014)

When we relocate to China, many of us face having to say bye to four-hob stoves and fancy kitchen equipment and are faced with small kitchens, little countertop space and one-hob burners. There is no need to panic. The Chinese kitchen is, on close inspection ingenious and versatile. For thousands of years they have managed […] Read More


Lost in Longjing (Part I)

Confession… I’ve always wanted to like Green Tea, but have almost always failed. Apart from the Yamamotoyama bags that we buy in Mitsuwa, Chicago, it always seemed, literally, too fishy to me… an overpowering taste of seaweed and greens that I struggled to enjoy. What better challenge, therefore, to start our journey to better understand […] Read More


Kung Fu Tea

My first introduction to tea was through the large pot that sat in the middle of our breakfast table for the first 20+ years of my life¹.  Like most westerners, my family added milk and sugar to this to mask the fairly strong flavor.  In my early 20’s, I next met “tea” in the US, […] Read More

Blanca Valencia

I miss Spanish food

Lately I fantasize about Spanish food: the extra virgin olive oils, the Iberico ham, the gazpachos, the fresh and sweet lettuces, the olives like Gordal and manzanilla, the canned fish. Thanks to I was able to create this collage about my favorite Spanish items.