China News Service, Taining, Fujian, December 15 (Chen Qifang) In Shangqing Township, Taining County, Fujian Province, there is a "tofu madman".

He is a college student returning to his hometown. Under his inheritance and protection, the declining tofu of Shangqingyou Beancurd has regained its brilliance, won the National Geographical Indication Certificate, and was selected as a municipal intangible cultural heritage. It has become Taining's characteristic agricultural and sideline products and tourism. A "hot stamping business card" for the product.

  Faced with "multiple choice questions"

  Yang Qijian is 36 years old this year.

After graduating from university, for a living, he took his wife and rushed in Shanghai to open a student restaurant, and the business was still booming.

The fast-paced, monotonous and repetitive life day after day makes Yang Qijian often confused and feel that he "lives for life".

  As the child grows up, the problem arises: the child has to go home to school, and if the couple still stay in Shanghai, the child will definitely become a left-behind child.

The words "left-behind children" often pierce Yang Qijian's heart like a needle.

He does not want his children to grow up, but lacks the company of their parents.

Poor household Yang Meilin (first from right) makes tofu with milk.

Photo by Chen Qifang

  After thinking about it, in order to spend more time with his family, he gave up the business with an annual income of two to three million yuan when he was just thirty years old, and resolutely returned home with his wife and children.

  The taste of "homesickness" in memory

  Yang Qijian has an indescribable love for tofu since he was a child. In his memory, his childhood is the low sound of the turning of a stone mill, the splash of water from a wooden spoon, and the fragrance of beans passing through the Qingshi Alley in his hometown.

  The "homesickness" taste in his memory is Shangqingyoujiang Tofu.

The so-called floating milk tofu does not use plaster or bittern. Instead, it uses sour overnight milk to pour it into a special wooden scoop. The wooden scoop slowly walks in the soy milk to combine the old milk with the fresh soy milk and condense into a delicate Tofu flower.

The tofu made in this way is as white as jade, tender and delicious.

  The ancient technique of Youjiang Tofu has lasted for more than 2,000 years. It was once a family heirloom in Shangqing Township, and has supported batches of craftsmen.

However, it completely needs to be made by hand. In the modern fast-paced society, it is abandoned by many young people and gradually declines.

  Ancient techniques and skills on the "tourist car"

  Taining is a tourist county, and Chongji is a tourist village.

Can ancient techniques and techniques be put on a "touring car" and regain their brilliance?

Yang Qijian and his friends founded Fujian Taining Shangqingyou Tofu Food Co., Ltd.

The rural two-level government also came to "assistance". On the only way for tourists to go to Qingxi, the Shangqingyou Tofu Culture Experience Hall was built, which gave him a platform to display his skills.

The fresh, fragrant and tender tofu is popular with everyone.

Photo by Chen Qifang

  Yang Qijian knew that there were still some villagers in the village who still mastered the technique of swimming, so he went to visit from house to house, invited them out, and convinced them to teach skills.

He was the first to be the first "apprentice."

  You jiao tofu is delicious, but it is not an easy task to do. In addition to physical labor, you must be careful and persevering.

Yang Qijian plunged into the jelly bean curd and truly experienced the charm and difficulty of this traditional technique.

  In order to mix the water and soy milk more fully, the wooden spoon can only be rotated more than 500 times manually, and this process takes an hour.

Coupled with the soaking and grinding of the soybeans, the whole process takes 4 to 5 hours. In order to catch the morning market, the production will start at three or four in the morning.

  After turning into a "tofu madman", Yang Qijian not only made tofu himself, but also learned how to cook tofu himself.

He launched a "tofu feast" with local characteristics. Traditional dishes such as soy milk, pan-fried tofu, freshly fried tofu, farm tofu, loach tofu, and fermented tofu are popular among diners.

  Sometimes there is too much tofu, what should I do if I don’t use it up that day?

His "trick" is "tradition must be inherited, innovation must not stop."

While adhering to the ancient method of free-flowing milk, while processing and packaging the remaining tofu, the original "bamboo method" smoked tofu, new-style okara cake, etc., have enriched the dishes and are highly recognized by the industry.

  In the large-scale outdoor food reality show "The Mystery of Taste", after the heavyweight "God of Cookery" Ermao tasted the smoked tofu made by Yang Qijian, he said "This is the best tofu I have ever eaten" and even praised it to challenge the world The only Michelin tofu.

  In order to increase the popularity of Shangqing Youjiang Tofu, he actively cooperates with the folklore activities such as "New Year in a Small Town" and "Naughty Festival" launched by the county, and organizes many large-scale tofu banquets every year.

With dozens or even hundreds of table scenes, the unique farmhouse tofu has turned tourists over; through their new media such as Douyin and short videos, more and more people know about tofu.

  Nowadays, "Shangqingyou Beancurd" has become a "hot stamping card" for Taining's characteristic agricultural and sideline products and tourism products.

In 2018, "Taining Shangqing Youjiang Tofu" successfully applied for the National Geographical Indication Trademark; in the same year, the production of oily tofu was included in the fifth batch of representative projects of intangible cultural heritage in Sanming City.

  Carry out the "tofu business" to the end

  In recent years, Yang Qijian has focused his energy on the tofu workshop in Chongji Village, insisting on making tofu feasts by himself to ensure the taste and texture of the dishes.

He also opened two stores in Taining City, specializing in Shangqingyou Tofu.

Tofu brings him an annual turnover of about 1.5 million yuan.

  In the village, he provided nearly 10 jobs for the villagers.

At the same time, he set up a professional cooperative to attract poor households in the village to carry out skills training.

  Poor household Yang Meilin learned how to make tofu, and soon found a job in Yang Qijian's tofu workshop.

He goes to the tofu shop at three or four in the morning every day to make tofu, tofu, and fried tofu... He can finish the job at seven or eight in the morning, with a monthly salary of more than 2,000 yuan, plus the income from cleaning public welfare positions, and build a new house. , "Life is very tasteful."

  The tofu workshop consumes about 10,000 kilograms of soybeans every year.

How to lengthen the industrial chain and drive surrounding villagers to get rich?

He cooperated with the township to set up a professional cooperative for growing green beans and fragrant soybeans, and hired local poor households to plant 500 acres of soybeans, and purchased them at a high price through an order-based model. While ensuring the quality of their products, they also increased the income of poor households.

  "You have a century of fermented tofu, a hundred years of chewing on a piece of tofu," Yang Qijian said. He will carry out the "tofu business" to the end, so that more people will relive the taste of nostalgia.