Ning Wei Wang, Beijing food and culture
Chinese traditional food
There is a folk idiom in China, “Hunger breeds discontentment.” How time flies, according to my great grandfather’s statement, Chinese traditional cooking methods originates from the basic oral records between teenagers and masters. When asked about which is the most delicious food in Chinese catering industry, even if some cooks argue that royal snack is the delicious food in the ancient emperors’ plates, most people always choose the public food in our daily life. Essentially, I agree with this opinion and believe that there are three most famous cooking methods in Chinese life. They are Beijing cuisine, Confucian cuisine and Sichuan cuisine. Yesterday, I took part in a cooking seminar and wrote this article in my paper.
Firstly, people living in the northern part of china like to eat Beijing traditional food. Beijing food, such as Beijing Roast duck, Dry Fried Meatballs and other exquisite food, focus on people’s taste. There is an old saying in Beijing “food cures better than medicine.’’ Beijing food are the essential part of people’s eating because Beijing cuisines not only have at least twenty different kinds of cooking methods, which include fried, boiled, stew, burnt, baked, steamed and so on, but it also provides all necessary human nutrition. For instance: Spring Pancakes are one of the most popular foods in Beijing. Baking the bread dough as a skin, they cook a lot of vegetables, such as: leaks and bean sprouts, and then roll them in the Pancake. The vegetable stir-fry provides all the vitamin, cellulose and protein people need, so many people like the Spring Pancakes very much. Eating the Spring Pancakes can help people find old memories and stories because many famous restaurants are located in the center of the old districts (these restaurants are called: China Time-honored Brand). To be honest, in order to enjoy the Spring Pancakes and attentive service, my grandparents always eat the Spring Pancakes in the snack bars with me. Every generation of teenagers are able to try this food long before they go to the middle school and almost every students have their special memories to record the delicious food. (Yummy, yummy!! I am a student in Beijing). So this is the Beijing cuisine, which is one of the most important cooking methods in China.
Further, people living in the eastern part of china prefer the Confucian cuisine. Confucian cuisine includes well-known dishes, such as the Babao Bean Drum and Candied Floss. About one thousand years ago, the great Chinese philosopher, Confucius, once said: “all within the four seas, Chinese are brothers’’. Over time, the Chinese always use the public saying like: “two heads are better than one” to describe the importance of holding friends together. These sentences tell us that lots of cooks always study different kinds of cooking methods. This is especially true of cooks in fancy restaurants. Obviously, under this historical condition, cooks prefer to make friends with their diners. Confucian cuisine represents Chinese traditional cuisine, in which most cooks are successful at cooking their food by steaming and boiling. Tai Chi Tofu is one of the most representative foods of Confucian cuisine. Cooking meat and scallion as the decorations, cooks put them in the bottom of the bowl. Next, the cooks put the Tofu and seasoning on the top of the meat. Facing the bowl, Tofu looks like a picture of Tai Chi. Finally, it is ready to eat. The more frequently we come to the Confucians’ restaurants, the more friends we would meet. This is the main reason why Chinese love Confucian cuisine.
Thirdly, people living in the southwestern part of China like to eat the Sichuan cuisine. Sichuan cuisine impresses people, both famous and profound, with its thick spicy sauce. Because of the humid climate, cooks will prepare a lot of hot seasoning and fillings with their food. Eating a lot of fish and meat, include several of hot seafood, is the homely dish in people’s life. For example: Kong Pao chicken is the most public food in the Sichuan province. This name came from a historical personage “Gong Pao”, he was one of the most famous philanthropists in the Qing Dynasty. He always helped others and shared his money with the poor people. Finally, all the people knew his best food, stir-fried chicken, so they cooked the chicken with some hot seasoning, and gave a special name to remember this person. This is the famous food---Kong Pao chicken. This is the Sichuan cuisine, which is the hottest food in china.
In conclusion, I really believe that the Beijing cuisine, Confucian cuisine and Sichuan cuisine are the most delicious food in china; everyone should try to eat these and not merely eat food that they like. Cooking traditional food in Chinese’s long ancient history changes many times. Nowadays, most Chinese people want to eat the traditional food. With focus on nutrition and heat, traditional food has become an important part of the Chinese colorful history.