~ Chinese herbs pt. 1 ~

17 December 2006

as my pregnancy is about to reach the 4th month, ari’s parents sent us recipes for Chinese medicine where i had to buy, cook and drink the stuff.

Chinese herbs - buying

yesterday, ari, ari’s mom (who’s here for the holiday) and i went to Chinatown to do some herbs shopping. this is very exciting, since this is the first time i ever entered (not to mention buying from) a Chinese medicine store… since this is ari’s first time as well, we thought we should try the one that looks most.. modern. that way, we hope the clerks will be able to speak English.

well, it turned out that we don’t really need to speak in English… the recipes is written in Chinese, so, all we had to do is to show the paper to the man behind the desk and everyone in the store goes, “aahh!”… and they went to prepare the herbs and all.

Chinese herbs

the guy ran around with a small scale in his hand, going from one shelf to another, picking up some kind of roots, grass and dry flowers. it was placed on a white paper, which later wrapped into a packet. the whole thing only costs around 5 bucks. yay!

next time, we’re going to try a different medicine store… maybe the ancient looking ones. :)

we also had to buy a ceramic pot to cook the herbs, since all i have is a metal pot. so we bought a small-sized one, and hoping maybe we can use it for hot-pot cooking someday.

Chinese herbs - cooking

today, we cooked the herbs. all the ingredients were mixed into the pot, and we added 1.5 cups of water. we made sure that all those leaves and roots were under the water. brought it to boil and simmered it with a very low heat. the recipes says that we need to cook it long enough, leaving only 1 cup of liquid. it didn’t take too long. in only half an hour, the cooking is done, leaving brownish-black liquid on the bottom of the pot. it smelled very mediciny… and bitter…

Chinese herbs - cooked

after draining all the roots and leaves, we put the dark brown liquid in a bowl, waiting for it to cool down. i couldn’t wait to try it out…

after leaving it for about 5 minutes, it was ready. i started with a tiny sip. i knew it was going to be bitter… but, boy, it was BITTER!!!! it left a weird after-taste, too. and the further you go down to the bottom of the bowl, the thicker the soup… and the weirder and more bitter the taste… yikes!

fortunately, i could finish it. we’ve prepared a glass of sweet tea nearby and three Chinese candy, given by the medicine store (i guess they knew it was going to be very bitter, and sweet candy will be needed ;), which i immediately took after the last sip of the medicine.

in two months, i will need to have another cup similar to this one. it’s made from a different recipe, but i’m sure the taste will not be much different. i’m looking forward to do the herb shopping, but i’m not sure if i’m looking forward to the drinking part… heh heh.

~ comment (14) ~

Hallo Thalia, kalau saya boleh tahu, herbs-nya untuk tujuan apa ya….penasaran dengan resepnya :)

hanindyo | 19 December 2006 - 12:36 | reply

hehe, good question :P

katanya sih, untuk kesehatan dan menguatkan si bayi. general banget ya? hehe. it’s a family recipes.

thalia | 19 December 2006 - 11:49 | reply

hahahhaha..kasian Thalia..ganbatte ne!!(^_^)/ huuu..really want to see ur swelling tummy!!!hahahaha..

jessi | 19 December 2006 - 12:50 | reply

the tummy doesn’t look much different than my regular tummy after a big meal… hehehe. aku keliatan kayak orang kekenyangan aja terus :P

thalia | 19 December 2006 - 11:52 | reply

aiyah….bitter tea but you are brave and held up well!

i can never finish them.

i would like to see your belly too! can’t wait for more pregnancy updates. :)

winnie | 19 December 2006 - 05:57 | reply

we’ll have another photo session with the ultrasound early january, so new photos in a few weeks! :)

good thing that i like the smell of bitter tea… (not the taste, though. it could be better ;) or else, i won’t be able to finish it either…

thalia | 19 December 2006 - 11:54 | reply

ahh yaaa, i remember my mum used to force this kind of thing down my throat.

one time i was at this medicine store and owner put a big jar of dried tree cockroaches in front of me… it’s one of the ingredients they use, and for a moment i was about to scream because i thought it’s gonna be on mine!

feli | 19 December 2006 - 02:23 | reply

whoa, that’s cool. ari was telling me about cockroaches and lizards. i thought that was cool… i was hoping that my medicine would have something like that, but they only put roots and dried leaves. maybe i will have something like that later in the pregnancy…

thalia | 19 December 2006 - 11:58 | reply

If I were a cat I’d be long since dead. But for curiousity sake, why is it you have to take it? Custom/tradition? Not to be rude. Just curious.

manda | 19 December 2006 - 11:50 | reply

no, no, it’s not rude. all i know is that the bitter tea thing is taken for the health of the baby. i guess it’s mostly tradition, because it’s family’s recipes from my husband’s parents. as for me, it’s kinda exciting to try it out, since there is no such thing in my family :)

thalia | 19 December 2006 - 11:51 | reply

mba, kegunaanya untuk apa tuh kaya pahit banget deh, soalnya waktu aku gejala tipes disuruh mama minum ramuan cina, busyet deh baunya minta ampun begitu juga pahitnya wihh

fenny | 20 December 2006 - 07:06 | reply

baunya sih enak, tapi emang pait banget! katanya sih gunanya buat bikin kuat bayinya… hehehe.

thalia | 22 December 2006 - 10:38 | reply

Hihi pait yah tal, iyah gue dulu juga di suruh minum begituan…yang paling parah yang di rebusnya pake ayam.. amisss….*Yuck!* Tpi ke toko obat seru yah? gue juga demen hahaha… gue demen lemarinya yang banyak lacinya

Nia | 20 December 2006 - 09:48 | reply

iya seruuu! belanjanya seru, ngadon + masaknya juga seru! cuman pas minumnya… hihihi, could be better :P

thalia | 22 December 2006 - 10:41 | reply