That's what I have to say to those who claim Shanghainese like sweets (and I mean it to sting). While it is true that one can find things with more sugar in them than in other parts of China, Shanghai "sweetbread" is a bland mess, candy is decidedly unsweet, and the "cake" here is like cake in much the same way that cardboard is like cake. "Cheesecake" is usually frothy nonsense, and don't get me started on ice cream bars. If I want beans I'll eat beans; if I want ice cream, I won't eat beans.
That's why, when you do find real western goodies, they are inevitably aimed at expats, and thus on the pricy side. Still, on special occasions it is important to indulge.
I was therefore pleased to discover a delicious cake on sale at a bakery chain called "French Croissant" near my apartment. It is more or less a big strawberry shortcake, with yummy brownie and plenty of strawberries. The brownie was moist and choclatey, and the strawberries fresh and sweet. Now I know how Howard Carter must have felt when he discovered the tomb of Tutankhamun.
Monday, January 28, 2008