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784 Over The Wall

 "Oh..." Xiao Xing was rendered speechless. What Yuan Zhou said sounded very logical, and he had no way of rebuking it.

"Let's go," Yuan Zhou called out after paying when he saw that Xiao Xing was still in a daze.

"Ok," Xiao Xing walked towards Yuan Zhou.

"But Master Chef Yuan, why did you finish everything even when they tasted so terrible?" Xiao Xing asked curiously.

The duck was too oily and it did not feel as pleasant to eat as Yuan Zhou's food.

Xiao Xing could not think of a better word apart from "pleasant" to describe the feeling he had when eating Yuan Zhou's food.

After eating Yuan Zhou's food, this roasted duck meal tasted like wax for Xiao Xing. He had only eaten some plain white rice and dishes and was not satiated at all.

Most of the dinner was finished by Yuan Zhou alone. When he recalled how Yuan Zhou had eaten so many terrible foods for the past few days, Xiao Xing was petrified by Yuan Zhou's taste buds.

"It can't be because you can't taste them, right?" Xiao Xing looked at Yuan Zhou in astonishment.

"My taste buds are still very sharp," Yuan Zhou knew what Xiao Xing was thinking and remarked.

"Then..." Xiao Xing probed.

"I am using the strong points of others to make up for my weak points," Yuan Zhou gave a short explanation.

"But are there any strong points when they taste so terrible?" Xiao Xing was confused.

"Let's go," Yuan Zhou walked out and did not answer Xiao Xing's question.

As far as Yuan Zhou was concerned, even if a dish was terrible, there was still something to be learned from it.

"Should I take you back now or do you want to go anywhere else?" Xiao Xing asked.

"Let's take a stroll there," Yuan Zhou pointed at a distant busy alley.

"Ok, but most of the stuff being sold there are wholesale goods and some fruits," Xiao Xing said.

"Wholesaling food ingredients?" Yuan Zhou asked.

"Yes," Xiao Xing quickly nodded.

It was obvious that Xiao Xing was hoping that Yuan Zhou would buy some food ingredients and cook something. With that, he would have an excuse to eat Yuan Zhou's cooking again.

It was obvious what he was thinking about. Yuan Zhou immediately saw through him and said, "I'm only looking around. I won't be buying anything."

"Oh," Xiao Xing was disheartened, but he still seriously led the way there.

The alley was right in the middle of Chinatown. As there was a busy crowd, they were only able to reach the alley after walking for about 10 minutes.

When they arrived, the sounds of people peddling their goods filled the air. Every now and then, people could be heard speaking in Chinese, most of them shouting out the prices or the items being sold.

At the entrance of the alley, fruits were being sold. Yuan Zhou did not spend any time on the fruits as he had been eating a lot of fruits for the past few days. He directly headed towards the wholesale section.

The first wholesale stall was selling dry goods with piles of dried shrimp and other seafood products arranged there. Yuan Zhou suddenly spoke.

"These dried shrimps will taste very good when stir-fried with some garlic chives and chilies," Yuan Zhou gave a serious explanation, speaking loud enough for Xiao Xing to hear.

"When you eat it, you will be able to taste the unique flavor of the seafood. This is a unique flavor that is created through the combination of the garlic and dried shrimps. Moreover, since these are dried shrimps, it will be quite chewy as well," Yuan Zhou continued.

"Why are you telling me this, Master Chef Yuan?" Xiao Xing asked after swallowing his saliva.

"I'm just telling you how I would cook these ingredients," Yuan Zhou said.

"Oh," Xiao Xing rubbed his starving stomach and nodded grudgingly before sinking into silence.

Subsequently, Yuan Zhou continued describing the cooking methods of three other dishes. Xiao Xing was salivating without stop as he listened to Yuan Zhou, wondering if he should sever all contact with Yuan Zhou.

"Boss Yuan, I think I should send you back to your hotel now. In truth, it is not safe in Bangkok during the night. You are not even a local," Xiao Xing said solemnly.

"Sure," Yuan Zhou nodded after looking at the sky and time.

"Ok. Let's go back through here. This is a shorter path," Xiao Xing said as he pointed at a street.

Xiao Xing was not willing to walk the same way back. After all, if Yuan Zhou started describing cooking methods again, Xiao Xing might lose control over himself and started chewing on the ingredients raw.

"Sure thing." Yuan Zhou nodded his head.

Just like that, they walked silently. Suddenly, Xiao Xing spoke, "I have never expected that you are quite good with your words, Little Yuan."

Xiao Xing spoke while gnashing his teeth. What was the point of telling him all that if Yuan Zhou was not going to cook?

"I suppose I'm not too bad," Yuan Zhou replied.

Yuan Zhou could have sworn that he had no hidden meaning to what he just did. He was merely trying to test his own understanding on food ingredients. He was definitely not trying to tempt Xiao Xing's appetite.

The trip back was quite smooth as there was no traffic congestion. After an hour, they reached Yuan Zhou's hotel.

"Bye," Yuan Zhou said.

"Are you not staying any longer? There are still a lot of places you can visit," Xiao Xing asked.

"No, I'm good," Yuan Zhou shook his head.

"Go back earlier. It's not safe to stay outside late," Yuan Zhou said as he still remembered what Xiao Xing told him earlier.

"I'll send you to the airport tomorrow," Xiao Xing said.

"It's fine. That's not part of our agreement anyway. Goodbye," Yuan Zhou shook his head and waved his hand before turning around and entering the hotel.

"Goodbye," Xiao Xing waved his hand when he saw that Yuan Zhou was not saying anything else.

After returning home, Xiao Xing cooked some congee for himself. However, what he cooked could only be described with the term "a meal for two".

Simply put, what he cooked was too bland and the water was too clear. It was so clear he could see his own reflection on the bowl while eating, hence the "a meal for two" description for this congee he made. He shook his head as the congee was completely bland and the fragrance of the rice grains were nowhere to be found.

"Something is not right. Little Yuan's food is so good, he is definitely a popular chef," Xiao Xing suddenly thought of this. After all, Yuan Zhou's food was even better than the Michelin rated restaurants he had tried in the past.

Therefore, Xiao Xing started searching about Yuan Zhou with some Thailand search engine. When he found nothing, he was stunned.

"I can't find anything about him? Is he truly a normal chef? Are the chefs of China all so good?" Xiao Xing felt his worldview being turned upside down. He remained in stupefaction for a long time before he realized that since Yuan Zhou was from China, he should probably be popular in China.

And thus, Xiao Xing spent a long time asking his colleagues and friends before deciding on a Chinese search engine. Then, he started searching about Yuan Zhou. And the result of his research was...

"The pursuit of China's genius chef, Yuan Zhou, toward the quality of ingredients."

"A unique existence of the food industry. Who says that a great chef's restaurant must be lofty and huge? Today, let us enter the tiny restaurant of a great chef, the inner world of Yuan Zhou."

"Shocking! This is the reason why the genius chef Yuan Zhou does not allow take-outs from his restaurant!"

"Yuan Zhou: Why am I a chef? In the beginning, it was for a very common reason. I did it for the sake of making a living. Slowly, I started to feel that this is a very interesting profession and fell in love with it. Ultimately, I could no longer keep my passion in check, vowing to achieve something in this path I have chosen for myself."

Xiao Xing found a bunch of articles on Yuan Zhou. Then, he started reading them up.