We went out to one of the old style towns that make for a nice day trip outside of Chengdu. There were quite a few likely looking places to eat but in the end we went into this homestyle restaurant overlooking the square. View from inside:
There is no menu; you look over the kitchen stocks and decide with the cook and the server what you want to eat and how you want it prepared.
We wanted to try the crisp skinned soft tofu ( 脆皮豆花), since it's not something you see on too many Chengdu menus. It came in a spicy and sweet sauce that was made with bean paste. Delicious.
One of the local special foods is the Sichuan style bacon 老腊肉. They asked if we wanted it pan fried or stir fried, and I asked which was the best tasting. "Stir fried!" replied the cook and the server in unison. Nothing was on the plate besides the bacon and onions. The fat, which turned translucent but didn't melt, was the best part.
Am I sick of eating amaranth? No, I am not.
As we were finishing the staff sat down to eat their lunch.
I walked over to pay and saw they were eating from a large plate of thick, white strips. I asked what it was and they said 肉皮. That's right, pig skin. They assured me it was delicious.