"Lai" Rice Balls, Ma Po Tofu or "Measled Woman" Bean Curd (Sichuan food)

Benjamin Barrett gogaku at IX.NETCOM.COM
Mon Jun 7 08:07:12 UTC 2004

The postings on the blog at http://homepage2.nifty.com/osiete/s364.htm seem
to agree with a pockmarked old woman, though one poster says there are many

At http://www.worldgooddesign.net/j/china/ousan/0003.html, a suggestion is
made that the tofu was originally made by an Old Ms. Ma.

Benjamin Barrett

-----Original Message-----
From: American Dialect Society [mailto:ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU] On Behalf Of
Douglas G. Wilson

>...the excellent bean curd with spicy sauce ($7.25) is named after a
>woman with ''a spotty, pockmarked face.'' (MY DISH TONIGHT--ed.)
>Ma po tofu, bean curd with spicy minced pork and chili peppers ($8.25), is
>a classic Sichuan dish, invented, the guide explains, by an old woman with
>a face pockmarked by measles.

Folk etymology?

-- Doug Wilson

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