Chinese food seems to be the most popular cuisine in the world. It is not only the Taiwanese who thrive on consuming Chinese dishes but also the billions of people all over the globe. What is it in this cuisine that people continues to find the food irresistible?
Since China is one of the world’s largest producers of rice, there is no doubt that rice will be a staple food in their meals. Their more popular rice-based dishes are the Congee (rice porridge) and the Fried rice. There is in fact a variety of the Chinese fried rice depending on the region’s way of cooking. Yeung chow fried rice, the most popular one, is from Yangzhou and it contains scallions, peas, shrimp, scrambled egg and barbecued pork. The Hokkien fried rice from Fuji has a thick sauce with meat, vegetables, and mushroom.
Of course, noodles will always be a part of the Chinese gastronomy. The noodles in China vary in width but it will always be served long and uncut as Chinese traditions believe that long and uncut noodles represent longevity. Noodles in China are prepared in numerous ways depending on the region. Among the popular ones are:
- Lamian noodles from the Shaanxi province
- Daoxiao Mian or sliced noodles
- Liang Pi or cold noodles
- Zhajiang Mian which is wheat noodles with fermented soy bean paste from Beijing
- Chow mein or fried noodles
- Ban mian which is the Hokkien style of flat-shaped noodles in soup
- Wonton noodle which is a Cantonese noodle with broth, vegetables, and wonton dumplings
Another popular Chinese dish is the Century Egg. Chinese preserve duck, chicken or quail egg for weeks or even months. The curing process makes the yellow yolk turn into a dark green color and the white into a translucent grey or dark brown. This is commonly eaten on its own or a side dish.
The Chinese are also fond of cooked green, leafy vegetables. The most widely used vegetables in China are Chinese cabbage or bok choy, Chinese spinach, and bittermelon. Herbs such as parsley, onion, basil, star anise, fresh root ginger and garlic are likewise used in everyday cooking.
Chinese dishes are typically seasoned with one or a combination of the following:
- Soy sauce
- Oyster sauce
- Rice vinegar
- Hoisin sauce from fermented soybeans
- Sesame oil
- Sichuan peppercorns
It is indeed the appetizing and savory flavor and the delightful aroma of Chinese dishes that make this cuisine easy to appreciate. Whether the dish is made from rice, noodles, fish, egg, vegetables, meat or poultry, the Chinese flavor and aroma will always be distinctly present and undeniably, delectable.