Su Tang watched as the other girl used her chopsticks to throw another piece of fish into her mouth, seemingly still ‘evaluating’ the taste, and proposed the idea that had been on her mind.
And sure enough, when Luo Xingchen heard her question she replied, “Well, is it feasible to open a restaurant with only this Hot and Sour Grilled Fish?”
“In addition to this Hot and Sour Grilled Fish, there is also Spicy Grilled Fish, Sour Grilled Fish, and Black Pepper Grilled Fish. Also, I can prepare vegetables, rice, and even fish balls to go along with it, so why wouldn’t it be feasible?” Su Tang raised her eyebrows.
“Then, are you wanting to enter the restaurant business with me? Of course, the Luo family does own a few restaurants but, although this is a good dish, the thing is… ” Naturally it was feasible to open a restaurant, but Luo Xingchen could only feel that they had circled back to the old problem where this deal sounded a lot like it was just the Luo family paving the way for Su Tang to enter the market.
“Of course not. The business I want to talk with you about is in regard to these tomatoes and chili peppers.” Su Tang had long wanted to open a restaurant, however, she was worried that with her current abilities she wouldn’t be able to hold onto her recipes if she worked alone.
That was why she had always been hesitant to proceed with this matter because, while it was certainly very important for her to make money, it was also important not to put herself into a dangerous position. However, now that Luo Xingxing and the Luo family of Beikou were here behind her she thought something could be done. After all, the power of this group certainly wasn’t small since they were the biggest group of businessmen in the north.
So long as the Luo family claimed ‘ownership’ of the chili peppers and tomatoes things would be able to be kept under control for at least a few years. Then, in the future, when it inevitably spread out to other places Su Tang and Luo Xingchen would have at least earned the first rounds of dividends from this new and profitable business.
Luo Xingchen hadn’t expected Su Tang to say this, and her expression became serious. “You mean to say, no one else has ever seen this thing on the market?”
“If I’m not wrong, I think only you and I have eaten these two things at this point.” Su Tang had been studying under Song Yi recently and she had found that this ‘Qihuang Kingdom’ she had found herself in was very similar to the late Song or maybe the early Ming dynasties of her previous life.
And Su Tang clearly remembered that chili peppers and tomatoes had not been introduced into China until after the Ming Dynasty ended. Don’t look at the expensive seeds in Yang Fude’s hands as an example, because, in fact, many times those seed would never be sold. And, even if they were sold, often people who bought them wouldn’t know what to do with them or even what kind of seeds they were because they were just things that a sailor happened to pick up and bring back along the way, with no particular idea what they were or how to make them grow.
Moreover, Yang Fude was only able to get those seeds because of his connections, and for ordinary merchants or farmers, it would be much harder. It was only possible for Yang Fude because Qinghe Town wasn’t too far from the seaside, and there was a constant flow of passing merchant ships moving along the Qing River. In fact, some people had tried to plant these seeds before, but they never succeeded because they didn’t know even know what they were trying to grow. Not many people would be interested in wasting time on such a seemingly hopeless thing.
So these seeds were currently only considered to be expensive but useless things. And when Su Tang had asked Yang Fude about it, he had told her he could only buy ten or so packets of seeds over the course of a year. On the day that Su Tang had actually bought some of his seeds, he had told her that he felt guilty because his seeds were just a gimmick that he used to show off that he ‘could’ get these rare things and try to get people through the doors of his shop. Because of all that, Su Tang estimated that very few people had even seen seeds like these before.
And that was why Su Tang felt confident that these two products should be very new and completely unknown in Qihuang Kingdom.
Of course, Su Tang didn’t think that she and Luo Xingchen would be able to monopolize this business forever but, even if it was only for a year or two, it would be enough to bring in huge profits. And she was confident that Luo Xingchen would be able to recognize the value of these two new products even better than she could.
“Those two things that you ate directly at the bottom of the soup were, as I said, tomatoes. They aren’t that complicated to raise, and they can be eaten as a fruit or as a vegetable in many different recipes.”
“For instance, there are Tomato Scrambled Eggs or Tomato and Egg Soup. And, of course, they can also be used as a kind of seasoning, such as with the Hot and Sour Grill Fish that I made today. You will have noticed that all of the sour taste was brought out by the tomato and, whether it was delicious or not, you‘ve tried it yourself and should know very well. “