Chapter 29 (Part 2): The Culinary Tycoon

“It’s a dish called ‘Guandong Zhu’,” Yu Qingze replied. “I will make some modifications to it. Tomorrow, when I buy the ingredients, I’ll make it for you to taste. We can use the leftover gluten from making liangpi to sell along with it.”

(T/N: “Guandong Zhu” (关东煮) is a popular Chinese street food snack. It originated in the northeastern region of China, known as Guandong or Dongbei, hence the name. It is also commonly known as “Chinese hot pot” or “Chinese skewers.”)

When making liangpi, there would be leftover gluten after washing the dough with water. Yu Qingze deep-fried it and turned it into fried gluten. During this period of selling liangpi, they had accumulated quite a bit of fried gluten. Besides consuming some themselves, there was still a lot left, which would come in handy for making Guan Dong Zhu. There was no need to make it separately.

“Good, good! Whatever you make must be delicious,” Grandpa Chang praised with a smile and exclaimed, “You know so much about food. We couldn’t even imagine it, but you’ve made it happen.”

Chang Le heard this and discreetly glanced at Yu Qingze before immediately retracting his gaze.

“I learned it from my master,” Yu Qingze replied with a smile. He placed the freshly pulled noodles on a clean bamboo pole. When he noticed his sleeve had come undone, he walked over to Chang Le with his flour-covered hand raised and said, “Brother Le, could you help me fix my sleeve?”

Chang Le put down the plate in his hand, lowered his head, and skillfully rolled up Yu Qingze’s sleeve layer by layer without looking at him once.

Yu Qingze blinked his eyes, feeling that Chang Le was acting a bit strange today, even quieter than usual.

Could it be because he didn’t sleep well and was feeling unwell?

“Brother Le, leave these dishes for now. I’ll finish making the noodles here, and then you can make the liangpi. Go take a shower and rest. You look really tired,” Yu Qingze suggested. He shook his head, indicating that he would finish the tasks first. Chang Le sighed inwardly, knowing that even if he went to sleep, he wouldn’t be able to sleep.

Translated on ho lo lo novels dot com.

Seeing that Chang Le took another plate to scoop the noodle mixture, disregarding the fact that his hands were covered in flour, Yu Qingze grabbed his hand and snatched the empty plate away, intending to lead him to wash his hands.

“Go take a shower and rest. I’ll finish making liangpi in a little while. Both Grandpa and I are worried about you,” Yu Qingze urged. Startled by being caught, Chang Le instinctively pulled his hand back, feeling like he had reacted too strongly. He was at a loss and was then pushed out of the kitchen by Yu Qingze using his arm.

Chang Le: …

“Go quickly.”

Helpless, Chang Le had no choice but to wash his hands, tidy up his clothes, and prepare for a shower. He thought to himself, “Chang Le, take care of yourself. Don’t think about irrelevant things today. Just focus on getting a good night’s sleep! Big Brother Yu, Big Brother Yu is not someone you should be thinking about!”

Grandpa Chang sighed as he watched his grandson.

The next day, Chang Le’s complexion had improved slightly compared to the previous day, and he seemed more energetic. He didn’t want to stay at home. Instead, he preferred to go and set up a stall. Being busy would distract him from overthinking things.

Grandpa Chang and Yu Qingze couldn’t persuade him otherwise, so they reluctantly agreed.

Once they arrived at Beida Street and prepared to set up the stall, since it wasn’t busy yet, Yu Qingze planned to go to the blacksmith shop and the market. He entrusted the stall to Chang Le. Chang Le was capable of making cold noodles and liangpi, so there wouldn’t be any issues.

At the blacksmith shop, Yu Qingze handed the drawing of the mold he had made to the blacksmith master and discussed it with him for a while until the blacksmith master was certain. Then Yu Qingze went to the market.

The soup base was crucial for making Guan Dong Zhu.

Yu Qingze went to two different markets to purchase the ingredients. If certain ingredients were unavailable, he would substitute them with others. Although he couldn’t make the authentic Guan Dong Zhu with its seafood broth, he could still make a delicious version by modifying it with kombu, shiitake mushrooms, and pork bone broth.

Carrying bags full of ingredients, Yu Qingze returned to the snack stall and saw Boss Liu standing next to their stall, presumably waiting for him.

Seeing his return, Boss Liu handed a plate of stir-fried noodles to Yu Qingze, gesturing for him to taste it.

Yu Qingze, feeling helpless, took a few bites and said, “It tastes better than yesterday, but the shredded pork is slightly overcooked.”

“Mm, I’ll make it again when I get back,” Boss Liu nodded, took the plate back, snatched the chopsticks from Yu Qingze’s hand, and walked away.

Yu Qingze: …Does he have to act so cool?!

After putting everything in place, Yu Qingze washed his hands and didn’t go to help Chang Le with his task. Instead, he went to serve the dishes and handle the cash register.

Chang Le had a wound on his finger, so when Brother Chang saw it, he went to wash the dishes himself. Seeing this, Yu Qingze was very satisfied and decided to shorten Brother Chang’s trial period from seven days to three days. After today, starting from tomorrow, he would be treated as a regular employee.

At noon, Mi Ge’er came over and mentioned that their young master would be returning to Yunzhou in the afternoon. He asked if they could pack some cold noodles, liangpi, and other items to take back home. Their young master wanted to let Old Master Cai taste them too.

Yu Qingze simply packed some dry cold noodles and liangpi for them and also included some chili oil. They could prepare the other seasonings themselves. Sweet jelly couldn’t be packed easily, and they hadn’t brought any fruit for the jelly. However, they could take the immortal tofu and rinse it with water, but they would need to change the water the next day.

After explaining everything, Mi Ge’er took the ingredients and left.

Busy throughout the day, Yu Qingze hardly found a chance to talk with Chang Le. However, seeing that Chang Le seemed spirited, he felt slightly relieved.

In the afternoon, the sky became overcast, and dark clouds were gathering, indicating rain.

Seeing that most of the items were sold, Yu Qingze decided to close the stall earlier and go back home to avoid getting trapped in the city if it rained heavily.

On the way back, Yu Qingze informed Brother Chang about his decision to make him a permanent employee. Brother Chang was thrilled, and they chatted and laughed all the way, engaging in small talk.

Chang Le, pushing the trolley behind them, watched with mixed feelings. He felt that good brothers like Brother Chang were the ones who deserved Big Brother Yu.

Look at them, laughing and talking happily. How joyful. And as for myself…

Suddenly, thunder roared in the sky, the wind picked up abruptly, and dark clouds rolled in. A heavy rainstorm arrived before they could reach home.

They quickly took out umbrellas, but the wind and rain were too strong, and the umbrellas didn’t offer much protection. Moreover, the umbrellas were heavy, and they had to face the wind. Only Chang Le and Yu Qingze managed to hold them up.

“Boss Yu, there’s a household up ahead. The rain is so heavy. Let’s take shelter there,” Brother Chang suggested, hiding under Chang Le’s umbrella and noticing a nearby farmhouse.

Yu Qingze also saw it and nodded, “Good idea! Brother Le, let’s go and take shelter from the rain there. You two go ahead.”

Chang Le nodded, holding the umbrella, while Brother Chang pushed the food cart. They went ahead. Behind them, Yu Qingze held the umbrella with both hands, and Chang Hao pushed the snack cart. The two of them slowly moved towards the farmhouse.

When they arrived at the farmhouse, Yu Qingze placed the snack cart and trolley side by side and set up an umbrella on top to shield them from the rain. Then he walked under the eaves with Chang Le.

Even in such a short distance, they still got wet. Fortunately, it was summer, so they didn’t have to worry about catching a cold.

They all wiped their faces and tidied up.

Yu Qingze noticed a leaf on Chang Le’s hair and wanted to help remove it. But just as he was about to reach out, Chang Le suddenly looked up, tilting his head back.

Yu Qingze: … Why am I being rejected again? What has happened to Chang Le these past two days? He never used to be like this. He used to let me touch his head. Why does he seem to be guarding against me like I’m a wolf?

Feeling inexplicably hurt.

“Uh… um, Brother Le, you have a leaf on your hair. Let me take it off for you?” Yu Qingze stumbled a bit, unsure of Chang Le’s current attitude towards him.

Chang Le blushed slightly when he heard Yu Qingze’s words. He turned his head and reached up to remove the leaf himself.

Yu Qingze: …

Over the next two days, Yu Qingze noticed that this kind of situation became more and more frequent. The previously harmonious interaction between him and Chang Le suddenly became somewhat awkward.

He approached his little helper and asked, “What’s wrong with your brother these days? Is something bothering him?”

Chang Hao was also puzzled and shook his head, saying, “I don’t know.”

Yu Qingze was completely bewildered. Could it be that Chang Le really disliked him? Why did it feel like Chang Le was avoiding him?

He hadn’t done anything wrong…


Thingyan: Chang Le, you’re only pushing the other person away by being so weird. Just act normal, can you?


  1. Stela says:

    Thanks for the update❤️❤️❤️

    1. Aprillen says:

      Ugh, why does YQZ have to be so clueless…! Put two and two together, will you!

    2. Aprillen says:

      Sorry, that was not meant to be a reply to you! WordPress is so weird and buggy on mobile…

    3. Moonrabbit says:

      Thingyan…that was such a straight man comment…idk you are such a Thingyan….*shock face

  2. IceCreamThrift says:

    geez i wonder why MC

    Thank you for the update!

    1. Thingyan says:

      Super low self esteem I guess 😫 frustrating

  3. Thanks for the chapter!

    1. Aprillen says:

      Ugh, why does YQZ have to be so clueless…! Put two and two together, will you!

  4. Aprillen says:

    Ugh, why does YQZ have to be so clueless…! Put two and two together, will you!

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