Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Chinese cuisine

Chinese cuisine

Chinese cuisine (Traditional Chinese: 中國菜 or 中餐, Simplified Chinese:

中国菜 or 中餐) originated from the various regions of China and has become widespread in many other parts of the world — from Asia to the Americas, Australia, Western Europe and Southern Africa. In recent years, connoisseurs of Chinese cuisine have also sprouted in Eastern Europe and South Asia. American Chinese cuisine and Canadian Chinese food are popular examples of local varieties.

Regional cultural differences vary greatly within China, giving rise to the different styles of food. There are eight main regional cuisines, or Eight Great Traditions (菜系): Anhui, Cantonese, Fujian, Hunan, Jiangsu, Shandong, Sichuan and Zhejiang. There is also Huaiyang Cuisine, a major style and even viewed as the representation of the cuisine.

Occasionally, Beijing cuisine and Shanghai cuisine are also cited along with eight regional styles as the Ten Great Traditions (十大菜系). There are also featured Buddhist and Muslim sub-cuisines within the greater Chinese cuisine, with an emphasis on vegetarian and halal-based diets respectively.

Dongpo rou (Trad: 東坡肉, Simp: 东坡肉) Fried pork belly stewed in soy and wine

Pork is generally used over beef in Chinese cuisine due to economic, religious, and aesthetic reasons; swine are easy to feed and are not used for labour, and are so closely tied to the idea of domesticity that the character for "home" (家) depicts a pig under a roof. The colour of the meat and the fat of pork are regarded as more appetizing, while the taste and smell are described as sweeter and cleaner. It is also considered easier to digest. Buddhist cuisine restricts the use of meats and Chinese Islamic cuisine excludes pork. [1]


Vegetarianism is not uncommon or unusual in China; though, as is the case in the West, it is only practiced by a relatively small fraction of the population. Most Chinese vegetarians are Buddhists, following the Buddhist teachings about minimizing suffering. Chinese vegetarian dishes often contain large varieties of vegetables (e.g. Bok Choy, shiitake mushroom, sprouts, corn) and some imitation meat. Such imitation meat is created mostly with soy protein and/or wheat gluten to imitate the texture, taste, and appearance of duck, chicken, or pork. Imitation seafood items, made from other vegetable substances such as konjac, are also available.

Chinese desserts

Chinese desserts (甜點) are sweet foods and dishes that are served with tea or at the end of meals in Chinese cuisine. The desserts encompass a wide variety of ingredients commonly used in East Asian cuisines such as powdered or whole glutinous rice, sweet bean pastes, and agar. Due to the many Chinese cultures and the long history of China, there are a great variety of desserts of many forms.


Bing (餅) are baked wheat flour based confections, these are either similar to the short-pastry crust of western cuisine or flaky like puff pastry, the latter of which is often known as su (酥). The preferred fat used for bing is usually lard. One of the more commonly
known bing is the moon cake.


Chinese candies and sweets,called táng (糖), are usually made with cane sugar, malt sugar, and honey. These sweets often consists of nuts or fruits that are mixed into syrup whole or in pastes to flavour or give the candies their textures. Tanghulu, dragon's beard candy, and White Rabbit Creamy Candy are a some examples of this category.


Gao or Guo (糕/粿) are rice base snacks that are typically steamed and may be made from glutinous or normal rice. In Fukien speaking Chinese populations, these are known as Kuei, which are based on the pronunciation of "粿". These rice based snacks have a wide variety of
textures and can be chewy, jelly-like, fluffy or rather firm. One of the more commonly known gao is the niangao.


Chinese jellies are known collectively in the language as ices (凍 or 冰). Many jelly desserts are traditionally set with agar and are flavored with fruits, though gelatin based jellies are also common in contemporary desserts. Some Chinese jellies, such as the grass jelly and the aiyu jelly set by themselves.


Chinese dessert soups (湯 or 糊) typically consists of sweet and usually hot soups and custards, and are collectively known as tongsui in Cantonese. Some of these soups are made with restorative properties in mind, in concordance with traditional Chinese medicine.
A commonly eaten dessert soup is douhua, which is sometimes taken for breakfast

Chinese Popular Cuisine Names

Thirteen Great Traditions- Regional Dishes

Anhui (Hui 徽)

* Ginger Duck (simplified Chinese: 姜母鸭; traditional Chinese: 姜母鸭; pinyin: jiang muya)
* Hay Wrapped Fragrant Ribs(simplified Chinese: 稻香排骨; traditional Chinese: ; pinyin: daoxiang paigu)
* Caterpillar Fungus Duck(虫草炖老鸭)
* Dry Pot Tofu (干锅素肉)
* Potato Croquets (土豆炸饺)
* Crab-apple Flower Cake (海棠酥)
* Soy Braised Mandarin Fish (红烧臭鱖鱼)
* Friend Tofu Balls (豆腐渣丸子)
* Fried Pumpkin Dumplings (南瓜蒸饺)
* Silver Fish Fried Egg (银鱼煎蛋)
* 5 Colors Fish Cake (五彩鱼片)
* Jade Rabbit Sea Cucumber (玉兔海参)
* Flower Mushroom Frog (花菇田鸡)
* Bright Pearl Abalone (明珠酥鲍)
* Bagongshan Tofu (八公山豆腐)
* Crab and Fish Stomachs (蟹连鱼肚)
* Phoenix Tail Shrimp (凤尾虾排)
* Fuli Roast Chicken (符离集烧鸡)
* Lotus Seed Pod Fish (莲蓬鱼)
* Cream FattyKingfish (奶汁肥王鱼)


* Peking Duck (usually served with pancakes) (北京烤鸭)

Cantonese (Yue 粵)

* Preserved-salted fish (鹹魚, Haam yu)
* Preserved-salted duck (臘鴨, Laap ap)
* Preserved-salted pork (臘肉, Laap yuk)
* Chinese steamed eggs (蒸水蛋)
* Rice congee (皮蛋粥)
* Boiled bok choy with oyster sauce (蠔油小白菜)
* Stir-fried vegetables with meat (e.g. chicken, duck, pork, beef, or intestines) (青菜炒肉片)
* Steamed frog on lotus leaf (荷葉蒸田雞)
* Zhaliang (炸兩)
* Youtiao (油条)
* Dace fishballs (鯪魚球)
* Cantonese seafood soup
* Winter melon soup (冬瓜湯)
* Snow fungus soup (银耳湯)
* Northeast watercress sparerib soup (南北杏西洋菜豬骨湯)
* Old fire-cooked soups (老火湯, Lo foh tong)
* Wonton noodle (雲吞麵)
* Beef chow fun (乾炒牛河)
* Shahe fen (沙河粉)
* Char siu (叉烧)
* Roast goose (燒鵝)
* Roasted pig (燒肉)
* White cut chicken (白切雞)
* Orange cuttlefish (鹵水墨魚)
* Brine-soaked duck (滷水鴨)
* Soy sauce chicken (豉油雞, Si yau gai)
* Little pan rice (煲仔飯, bou1 zai2 faan6)
* Layered egg and beef over rice (窩蛋牛肉飯)
* Layered steak over rice (肉餅煲仔飯)
* Preserved chinese sausage over rice (蠟味煲仔飯)
* Steamed chicken over rice (蒸雞肉煲仔飯)
* Pork Spareribs over rice (排骨煲仔飯)
* Crispy fried chicken
* Seafood birdsnest
* Suckling pig
* Taro duck (陳皮芋頭鴨)
* Roast young pigeon/squabs (烤乳鴿)
* Sour sparerib (生炒排骨)
* Salt and pepper rib (椒鹽骨)
* Salt and pepper cuttlefish (椒鹽魷魚)
* Salt and pepper shrimp (椒鹽蝦)
* Red bean soup (紅豆砂)
* Gou dim (糕點)
* Shaved Ice (刨冰)
* Deng egg (燉蛋)
* Bao yu (燜鮑魚, Bao yu)
* Shark fin soup (魚翅羹, Yu qi tong)
* Hoi sam (海參, Hoi sam)
* Bird's nest soup (燕窩, Yeen Waw)
* Tea smoked duck (茶燻鴨)

Fujian (Min 闽)

* Popiah (薄饼)
* Buddha jumps over the wall (佛跳墙, Fotiaoqiang)
* Yen pi (燕皮)

Hunan (Xiang 湘)
Jiangsu(Su 苏 or Yang 揚)


* xianbing 馅饼
* niurougan 牛肉干

Shandong (Lu 魯)
Szechuan (Chuan 川)

* Kung Pao chicken (simplified Chinese: 宫保鸡丁; traditional Chinese: 宮保雞丁; pinyin: gōngbǎo jīdīng)
* Zhangcha duck (simplified Chinese: 樟茶鸭; traditional Chinese: 樟茶鴨; pinyin: zhāngchá yā)
* Twice Cooked Pork (simplified Chinese: 回锅肉; traditional Chinese: 回鍋肉; pinyin: huíguōròu)
* Mapo dofu (Chinese: 麻婆豆腐; pinyin: mápó dòufǔ)
* Sichuan hotpot (simplified Chinese: 四川火锅; traditional Chinese: 四川火鍋; pinyin: Sìchuān huǒguō)
* Fuqi Feipian (Chinese: 夫妻肺片; pinyin: fūqī fèipiàn)
* Chongqing Spicy Deep-Fried Chicken (simplified Chinese: 重庆辣子鸡; traditional Chinese: 重庆辣子雞; pinyin: Chóngqìng làzǐjī)
* Shuizhu, or literally "Water cooked", or Dishes (Chinese: 水煮; pinyin: shuǐzhǔ)
* Dan dan noodles and Bon bon chicken


* Yusheng
* Popiah (薄饼)


* Crossing the bridge noodles

Zhejiang (Zhe 浙)