Page:Mongolia, the Tangut country, and the solitudes of northern Tibet vol 2 (1876).djvu/78

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rare thing — some excellent leavened bread, baked with yeast.[1] This was the first of the kind we had seen, and we never afterwards saw any more of it. Of course we took a good supply for the road. Whence this mode of baking bread was introduced I cannot say, although the Solones told us that some years ago they taught the art to the local bakers, having learnt it from the Russians on the Amur.

The best road from Ala-shan to the temple of Chobsen, and also to Si-ning and Lake Koko-nor, passes through the towns of Sa-yang-chen and Djung-ling; but we took a more westerly course through Ta-jing, in order to avoid the Chinese towns and population, which is thickly scattered along the more easterly and better road. Our fellow-travellers were so well aware of the difficulties to which they would have to submit at the hands of the Chinese authorities and soldiers, if they marched through the populous region, that they preferred following the mountain paths leading from Ta-jing to Chobsen through districts thinly inhabited and depopulated by the Dungans.

  1. In China only unleavened bread is used, and that always newly baked. The Abbé Huc, however, in the description of his journey through Tartary, mentions some excellent leavened loaves which he found in Kan-su, near the town of Sa-yang-chen, therefore not far from Ta-jing. — Huc, 'Souvenirs d'un Voyage en Tartarie,' &c., t. ii. p. 33.