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  • Gordon Dumoulin

'Pungent radish… clearing head and mind, bold in vision, courage in action'

‘Pungent radish…. clearing head and mind back to basics, good fortune, bolder in vision and courage in moving forward’.

We just enjoyed the first radish from our hometown garden in Beijing’s countryside… the taste is exceptionally pungent, intense and rich this year.

Radishes with intense flavors and colours are a unique ingredient in Chinese cuisine, health and symbolism. Radish represents the fringe benefits of life, not requiring luxuries or facades but providing basics such as health, personality and reflection.

Radish appears in Chinese proverbs such as ‘one turnip, one hole’ (一个萝卜一个坑儿), each person has their own task with nobody being indispensable or ‘some prefer radish while others like cabbage’ (萝卜白菜,各有所爱) meaning people’s preferences and visions differ, one must respect these differences.

Painting by Zhang Daqian (Chang Dai-chien, 1899-1983) :


It would be great for many of us mankind to regularly pause a moment for a bite in a pungent radish, clearing the mind and reflecting a wise and responsible course ahead, especially in this unprecedented era of the pandemic along with its global political and media mutations. It is not without reason that this year's radish is much more pungent. Nature is trying to help us a little along the way.... :-)

Weekend foods for thought !

#china #chineseculture #chinesesociety

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