On the first day of Chinese New Year, I would normally prepare a vegetarian dish. In the pot, I’d have some bean curd sticks, shitake mushrooms, button mushrooms, lily buds and “fatt choy” (hair moss). I stew the mushrooms and bean curd sticks in soya sauce and sesame oil first. Then, I’d add in the lily buds and finally the button mushrooms. The hair moss is only added after I’ve turned off the heat.
What disappointment! The hair moss turned out to be fake. The real thing has a slight, springy crunch to it. This one just falls apart, breaking into limp, tiny bits. The video below shows you how to tell the real from the fake. But there’s one problem. How do you do all those tests at the store where everything is sealed up?
Many people come to Singapore thinking that this is the safest, most honest place in the world. But as the younger generation gets less and less discerning (queuing up for lousy food at Food courts), there are plenty of opportunities for dishonest merchants and service providers. The wither of traditions will take place faster as the older and wiser folks avoid buying goods which may be fake.