Exploring China and its Delectable Cuisine
When traveling through China, the food becomes a major part of one’s experience. Chinese cuisine is highly regarded around the globe. It represents this country’s amazing culture with 5,000 years of history to back it up. Chinese cuisine ranks in the top three foods of the world, and for good reason. Therefore, we take a closer look at some of the most interesting aspects of Chinese cuisine and explore some recipes par-excellence.
Wheat and rice is a staple here. You’ll also find corn, millet, buckwheat, sweet potato, potato, and legumes commonly used. Color and flavor are brought to the meal with the help of noodles, steamed bread, steamed stuffed buns, and deep-fried dough twists. Cakes, gruels, and snacks show off local flavors. These flavors are a result of China’s vast natural resources. Foods are divided into eight specific cuisines from the provinces of Sichuan, Shandong, Jiangsu, Guangdong, Fujian, Zhejiang, Anhui, and Hunan. Each region has its own unique flavors and characteristics.
Along with excellent food, China produces wonderful wines. Alcohol has been a cultural symbol to China throughout history. Featured at larger banquets, it is used to put people at ease. China was one of the first countries to produce alcoholic drinks. To drink their wines is to actually take part in their culture. As far back as the Shang Dynasty, alcohol was a means for worshipping the gods. Chinese wines fall into four categories, white wine, yellow rice wine, fruit liquor, and medicinal liquor.
More well-known than their wines is China’s teas. Chinese tea is considered the national drink. With 4,000 years of history behind it, it is looked at as an art form. It was in China that the ceremonial planting, producing, and drinking methods for tea were first introduced. This has earned China the title of tea’s hometown. Tea is grown here in four different regions that include Southwest China, South China, and the North and South banks of the Yangtze River. When you sample Chinese tea, you’ll find the tea set plays an important role in this tradition. The sets made of pottery, porcelain, glass, wood, or bamboo each impart a different flavor to the tea.
Popular Places to Go
There are many places throughout China where one can sample and enjoy the food and drink. There are fine restaurants as well as typical eateries that are more affordable, but they still serve delicious Chinese dishes. One can also find local flavored snacks at night markets, roadside eateries, and street restaurants. Food is better in the larger cities than the remote areas, but you will discover a truer local flavor in the minority regions and get to experience their own special eating habits. Shanghai’s Laris restaurant has been called China’s best. Shanghai is also home to Mon the Bund where Chinese dishes have a Maghreb and Mediterranean touch. In Beijing, “Made in China” has an open kitchen so guests can watch chefs create traditional Chinese cuisine in the time-honored ways. The Beggar’s chicken is a must-have for tourists.