With the arrival of spring, the Chinese town of Dunyan in the province of Zhejiang envelops a strange, but familiar to every local resident smell - the smell of urine. This is prepared by the popular local delicacy - Tongzidan, which means “Boy's Egg”.
But it would seem, what have urine and boys? The answer is simple: Tongzidan is chicken eggs cooked in the urine, while the urine must necessarily belong to the virgin boy, and it is necessary to cook eggs in it all day. But as local gourmets assure, eggs turn out very tasty and leave the stalls like hot cakes.
During the day, all urine is discharged into a large container, and is used to prepare a delicacy. This practice is common in all schools in the city.
For cooking, it is advisable to use the urine of boys who are no older than ten years. There is no exact explanation for what exactly the urine of boys is needed. Usually teachers remind boys not to write into buckets if they get sick.
In the photo: The seller pours the urine vat into the cauldron with the boiling eggs. “Eggs cooked in the urine are very fragrant,” says 51-year-old Ge Yaohua, one of the most famous egg vendors in Dunyang. “Such eggs are very healthy.Our family eats them each. In Dunyan, every family loves to eat them, ”he says.
Cooking eggs takes all day. First, they must first be soaked, after which the eggs are boiled in the urine. After some time, the hard-boiled eggshell begins to burst. Through the cracks urine penetrates inside. At this stage they are left to cook for some time, so that everything is thoroughly saturated and absorbed in the scent. Only in an hour or two, as the eggs are covered with cracks, we can assume that they are almost ready. In the photo: A girl is watching the preparation of eggs.
The tradition of boiling eggs in the urine of boys has been around for hundreds of years. Locals say, cooked in this way eggs have miraculous properties for the human body. In the photo: a woman buys eggs boiled in the urine.
Eggs sell for 1.5 yuan each ($ 0.24), i.e. they cost twice as much as common raw eggs.
Locals believe that these eggs have a special medicinal value, because the urine contains substances that help to reduce body temperature and stop the bleeding. It is also believed that eggs can improve blood circulation and strengthen the immune system.
Chinese medical experts assess the “healing” properties of eggs differently.Some of them indicate a lack of hygiene when preparing eggs. In addition, local doctors argue that there can be nothing good or healing in the urine, since with it are collected waste products that are no longer in demand and even harmful to the human body.
Residents of the city love this unusual dish: they can eat 10 such eggs a day. Boil eggs in the urine will be for many centuries, as there will always be those who want to try them.