From My Wok to Yours - Taking the Mystery Out of Everyday Dining and Meals!!

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Fun Food Facts - in Chinese!!

In a country as immense as China, the diversity of its food is vast, but there are five major styles which can be attributed to the different regions from which they come from:
Types of Chinese Food - China Map RegionsBeijing FoodSichuan FoodHunan FoodFujian FoodCantonese Food
Traditional Chinese Food Types
Beijing Cuisine in the North: Beijing cuisine is the style prevalent in Northern China. It emphasizes light and subtle flavors and the best ingredients.
This style originates in the Imperial court, so the food must be "fit for an emperor". The most famous dish is of course Peking duck and is a must on your trip to Beijing.
Wheat is widely grown here in the north, so noodles made from wheat flour replace the rice. Steamed dumplings are also common.
Sichuan Food in the West: Hot and Spicy characterizes Sichuan food. Chili paste or dried chilies, garlic and ginger are some of the most common ingredients.
Some of our favorite Sichuan dishes are Ma Po Tofu and Kong Pao Chicken. Chengdu will be a great place to try out some of these dishes.
Also well known in Sichuan is the Hot Pot. In Chongqing, hot pot is considered a local specialty.
Hunan Food in Central China: Hunan cooking is known for its spicy zest and also sweet and sour flavors. Fresh chilies, garlic and shallots are the staples in the Hunan kitchen.
Hunan cuisine relies mainly on frying, stewing and pot roasting as cooking methods. The food also tends to be more on the oily side.
The Hunan Sweet and Sour Chicken or Pork are our favorites.
Fujian cooking in the East: Fujian cooking predominates in Eastern China. Famous for its clear soups, seafood dishes and subtle flavors.
Both rice and wheat are grown here, so rice as well as noodles are the staples.
From Fujian comes Red cooked chicken and the popular egg rolls.
Cantonese Food in the South: Cantonese is the style best known abroad as it was from this region that most immigrants to America, Europe and Southeast Asia came from, bringing with them their cooking style.
Soy and ginger are the main seasonings, and their cooking relies on a great variety of fresh ingredients for flavor.
Cantonese food specializes in stir frying, steaming and roasting.
This is the style we grew up with at home. Some of our favorite Cantonese dishes: char siu (bar-b-que pork), stir-fried beef and peppers with black bean sauce, lemon chicken and Dim Sum of course!
Some well-known Cantonese Delicacies: Shark’s fin soup, Bird’s nest soup.
The above five styles are considered the "classical" Chinese Cooking styles. Even though the above characteristics are considered typical to each type, the mixing of different regional and traditional styles, cooking methods and ingredients is so widespread, it is difficult to pin point what is "Authentic Beijing Style" or "Authentic Sichuan Cuisine" as nowadays, they all "borrow" from each other. Sweet and sour dishes for example are quite common in Cantonese cooking.

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