Chapter 26: The Crazy Soup Dumplings
Translator: Xiong Guoqi Editor: DesTheSloth
“Ping Ping Pang Pang.”
Yuan Zhou started to steam the Soup Dumplings in the big steamer pot. About 8 minutes later, the Soup Dumplings were ready. He first lowered the temperature to a constant temperature, to avoid overcooking the Soup Dumplings and preventing the skin from hardening or the gravy from flowing out.
Yuan Zhou then carried one steaming basket out using a clean white cloth and placed it in front of him. Then he took out a small plate, filled it with some vinegar and sat down for a taste.
What a pleasant and relaxing fragrance!
It was not exaggerated at all to say that if one could usually eat one bun for breakfast, then one could eat three Soup Dumplings that Yuan Zhou made.
With one hand holding chopsticks and the other carrying a big plate, he clamped the Soup Dumplings out of the basket and put it into the plate with great care. A steamed bun took up exactly one plate. When Yuan Zhou tore apart the skin of the steamed bun with chopsticks, the intense fragrance of the gravy mixed with the smell of the skin flooded his nose and then gradually spread to the whole room.
Regardless of the high temperature, Yuan Zhou sipped a mouthful of the gravy and instantly, his lips and tongue were soaked in the fresh and delicious gravy. He gradually sipped all the gravy from the steamed bun, leaving only the skin of the bun that was wrapping the stuffing.
Afterward, Yuan Zhou poured some vinegar onto the steamed bun through the opening he made earlier, then picked it up and swallowed the entire steamed bun with only one bite.
With its light and thin skin wrapped around the fresh stuffing, along with the slight odor of vinegar that gave it a strong delicate flavor, this single steamed bun was extremely satisfying and enjoyable.
One steamed bun absolutely couldn’t satisfy Yuan Zhou. He had eaten up 4 of them even before he realized it. A steamed bun was about a fist’s size, hence, one steamed bun and a drink were enough for an adult. But Yuan Zhou could eat up to 4 Soup Dumplings directly even though he had the God Tier Egg Fried Rice. You can imagine how delicious the Soup Dumplings were.
“What smell is it? It’s so fragrant.”
Just when Yuan Zhou was enjoying the Soup Dumplings inside the closed restaurant, dawn had come about and people started to fill the streets. The passerby who got up to jog or work asked curiously when they smelled the fragrance floating out from Yuan Zhou’s restaurant.
Theoretically, an important part of the restaurant controlled by the system was that whatever dishes the customer had ordered, it could only be smelt by Yuan Zhou and the customer himself. Others will only smell it when they got close. The annoyance of tainted odors could then be avoided this way. Moreover, it wouldn’t affect other customers tasting their delicacy. Whereas, the reason why the fragrance of the Soup Dumplings spread to the whole room and even outside this time was because Yuan Zhou hadn’t opened the door of the restaurant yet. So the system judged that the restaurant wasn’t open for business, thus causing such a result.
The stalls providing breakfast along the street suddenly had an increase in business. Everyone that inhaled the fragrance of the Soup Dumplings gained a good appetite. People who hadn’t had the breakfast could no longer endure their hunger anymore while those who had already had breakfast still drooled.
While Yuan Zhou was still enjoying the delicacy himself and as the restaurant wasn’t open yet, those passengers could only buy some food from the stalls and feed themselves. Since the hawkers had double the business than usual, they managed to withstand the desire to eat and concentrated on doing business while swallowing their saliva with great joy on their faces.
When it went to 8:00, Yuan Zhou contentedly patted his belly and opened the door after drinking a glass of water. He decided to sell the Soup Dumplings this very morning.
Once the door was opened, the fragrance that originally filled in the room immediately gush out into the street. As a result, the passengers on the street all stopped and rushed towards the restaurant at once, even the hawkers did the same.
A white-collar worker dressed in suits, who had eaten at the restaurant before and thus knew Yuan Zhou, asked immediately.
“Boss Yuan, what delicious food are you cooking? The fragrance is terrific. Is it for sale?”
Since someone asked, others naturally needn’t to inquire again. Not until then did they realize that this store, without even a shop sign, was selling food. But the question was really odd. How could a restaurant not sell food?
Even though the food was for the boss’s consumption, he still had to offer it if customers wanted to buy it. This was common sense for businesses.
“I made some Soup Dumplings today and those are obviously for sale. As usual, the price is on the wall.”
When Yuan Zhou found that it was an old customer, he answered and then pointed at the new price list on the wall.
Nevertheless, a glance at the price frightened the onlookers in the restaurant. What was written on the wall?
Egg Fried Rice, 188; Egg Fried Rice Set, 288; The Soup Dumplings, 66 per steaming basket
“This is absolutely a rip-off. Those prices are unbelievably high,” screamed an old grandma who had gotten up early to buy fresh vegetables and had intended to watch the fun when she saw the price, just like an old cat whose tail was stepped on.
“Yeah. Only a small eatery dares to sell such a high price! Does the boss think this is a five-star hotel?” Some other old grandmas echoed together.
Yuan Zhou returned to behind the curved long table and just watched as the old grandmas looked around silently in disgust. These old grandmas were originally the kind of people who always took advantage of others. They would not listen even if you explained to them, so Yuan Zhou was also unwilling to waste the saliva and talk with them.
“No, it’s not like what you think. With Boss Yuan’s skills, even 588 RMB would be worth it, not to mention 188.” The young man in a suit who had inquired just now could no longer endure their words, thus he started to explain to the old mamas.
“Young man, you seem to be a shill, don’t you? You want to lure us to eat the expensive Egg Fried Rice,” One of the old grandmas looked at the young man in suits up and down and said suspiciously.
“You…” The man in a suit seemed to be an officer worker and was not good at talking with old grandmas who liked harassing others endlessly. He became speechless for a while and retreated in defeat.
Seeing they were about to quarrel, Yuan Zhou opened his mouth at that moment.
“Stop it. Go out if you don’t eat. I have to do business.”
After being driven away by the boss, those old grandmas knew he wasn’t a con artist, thus went away in shame. The hawkers also went back to their own business. 7 or 8 people stayed behind either because they had high incomes and didn’t care about the price, or because they were merely curious and were prepared to try the delicacy.
“Boss, didn’t you say the Soup Dumplings are for sale? Please give me one serving first,” One of the people that stayed behind, a young man dressed in a sportswear with earphones said. Obviously he was out to jog.
“Give me a serving as well. Let me try what the taste of this steamed bun is like,” An old grandpa that was dressed well sat down and said.
The remaining several people also started to order the Soup Dumplings, but they all ordered only one serving. After all, 66RMB was not cheap.
Some wanted vinegar while others didn’t. Yuan Zhou carried out plates of vinegar one by one to the several customers, who took up all the 8 seats
The old grandpa was the only one who mastered the necessary skills to eat the Soup Dumplings. He slowly poked the skin of the steamed bun first. When he found that the skin didn’t break apart, he picked the steamed bun and put it into the bowl.
The way he ate the steamed bun was slightly different from Yuan Zhou. He made a hole at the mouth on the top of the steamed bun first. Then he sipped a small mouthful of gravy. A content expression emerged on his face, afterwards his actions became more careful. The old grandpa then picked up the small plate and poured all the vinegar into the steamed bun. After that, he started to eat the steamed bun in a leisurely manner. This is the kind of caution exercised when people were enjoying superb delicacies. To the grandpa, only in this way could he fully enjoy the taste of the Soup Dumplings.
As for the man in a suit who had helped just now, it was quite different scenery. He ate the steamed bun roughly, which didn’t even match his polite manner and the suit on him. He took up the chopsticks, clamped directly the steamed bun and then put it into his mouth, without any stabbing or probing. Seen from his actions, he was a novice.
“HU HU HU…”
As expected, the hot gravy made him exhale continuously. He even fanned his mouth to cool down the temperature. Even so, the man in a suit was reluctant to let the hot gravy flow out, as the gravy was much too delicious. He felt it was a sin to let even a mere drop flow out.
The Soup Dumplings were now revealing their influence.
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