Today one of the followers of my blog asked for the Szechuan Cutheny recipe .. and I promised her to respond ,but before that I just wanted her to know more about Chinese cooking so that she understand the Chinese food more in detail and can establish a better qualitative bonding while enjoying the Chinese Food
China is just like India… As Indian food changes over 150 km and can be simply termed as North /South/West and East India same way Chinese cuisine includes styles originating from the diverse regions of China, plus styles of Chinese people in other parts of the world. Chinese food has changed from period to period and in each region according to climate, imperial fashions, and local preferences. Over time, techniques and ingredients from the cuisines of other cultures were integrated into the cuisine of the Chinese peoples due both to imperial expansion and from the trade with nearby regions in pre-modern times as well as from Europe and the New World in the modern period.
Styles and tastes also varied by class, region, and ethnic background. This led to an unparalleled range of ingredients, techniques, dishes and eating styles in what could be called Chinese food, leading Chinese to pride themselves on eating a wide variety of foods while remaining true to the spirit and traditions of Chinese food culture.
A number of different styles contribute to Chinese cuisine but perhaps the best known and most influential are Cantonese Cuisine ,Shandong Cuisine, Jiangsu Cuisine (specifically Huaiyang Cuisine) and Szechuan Cuisine. These styles are distinctive from one another due to factors such as available resources, climate, geography, History, cooking techniques and lifestyle. One style may favour the use of lots of garlic and shallots over lots of chilli and spices, while another may favour preparing seafood over other meats and fowl.
Jiangsu cuisine favours cooking techniques such as braising and stewing, while Sichuan cuisine employs baking, just to name a few.] Hairy crab is a highly sought after local delicacy in Shenghai, as it can be found in lakes within the region.Peking Duck is another popular dish well known outside of China.
Yue (Guangdong, Cantonese Cuisine)
Dim Sum, literally “touch your heart”, is a Cantonese term for small hearty dishes. These bite-sized portions are prepared using traditional cooking methods such as frying, steaming, stewing and baking. It is designed so that one person may taste a variety of different dishes. Some of these may include rice,;lotus, leaf, rice, turnip cakes, buns, shui jiao -style dumplings, stir-fried green vegetables, congee porridge, soups, etc. The Cantonese style of dining, yum cha, combines the variety of dim sum dishes with the drinking of tea. Yum cha literally means ‘drink tea’.
Cantonese style is the unique and charm dishes, which enjoy a long history and a good reputation both at home and abroad. It is common with other parts of the diet and cuisine in Chinese food culture. Back in ancient times, and the Central Plains on Lingnan Yue Chu family has close contacts. With the changes of dynasty historically, many people escaped the war and crossed the Central Plains, the increasing integration of the two communities. Central Plains culture gradually moved to the south. As a result, their food production techniques, cookware, utensils and property turned into a rich combination of Agriculture, which is the origin of Cantonese food. Cantonese cuisine originated in the Han.
Chuan (Szechuan Cuisine )
Sichuan (spelled Szechuan in the once common Postal Romanization), is a style of Chinese cuisine originating in the Sichuan of southwestern China famed for bold flavors, particularly the pungency and spiciness resulting from liberal use of garlic and chili peppers, as well as the unique flavour of the Sichuan pepper corm and facing heaven pepper , cháotiānjiāo). Peanuts, sesame paste and ginger are also prominent ingredients in this style.
Hui (Huizhou,Anhui Cuisine)
Anhui cuisine is derived from the native cooking styles of the Huangshan Mountains region in China and is similar to Jiangsu cuisine, but with less emphasis on seafood and more on a wide variety of local herbs and vegetables. Anhui province is particularly endowed with fresh bamboo and mushroom crops.
Lu (Shandong Cuisine)
Shandong Cuisine is commonly and simply known as Lu cuisine. With a long history, Shandong Cuisine once formed an important part of the imperial cuisine and was widely promoted in North China. However, it isn’t so popular in South China (including the more embracing Shanghai).
Shandong Cuisine is featured by a variety of cooking techniques and seafood. The typical dishes on local menu are braised abalone, braised trepang, sweet and sour carp, Jiuzhuan Dachang and. Various Shandong snacks are also worth trying.
Min ( Fujian Cuisine )
Fujian cuisine is a Fujian coastal region. Woodland delicacies such as edible mushrooms and bamboo shoots are also utilized. Slicing techniques are valued in the cuisine and utilized to enhance the flavor, aroma and texture of seafood and other foods. Fujian cuisine is often served in a broth or soup, with cooking techniques including braising, stewing, steaming and boiling.
Su (Jiangsu, Huaiyang)
Jiangsu cuisine, also known as Su (Cai) Cuisine for short, is one of the major components of Chinese cuisine, which consists of the styles of Yangzhou, Nanjing, Suzhou and Zhenjiang dishes. It is very famous all over the world for its distinctive style and taste. It is especially popular in the lower reach of the Yangtze River.
Typical courses of Jiangsu cuisine are Jinling salted dried duck (Nanjing’s most famous dish), crystal meat (pork heels in a bright, brown sauce), clear crab shell meatballs (pork meatballs in crab shell powder, fatty, yet fresh), Yangzhou steamed Jerky strips (dried tofu, chicken, ham and pea leaves), triple combo duck, dried duck, and Farewell My Concubine (soft-shelled turtle stewed with many other ingredients such as chicken, mushrooms and wine).
Xiang (Hunan Cuisine)
Hunan cuisine is well known for its hot spicy flavor, fresh aroma and deep color. Common cooking techniques include stewing, frying, pot-roasting, braising, and smoking. Due to the high agricultural output of the region, there are many varied ingredients for Hunan dishes.
Zhe (Zhejiang Cuisine)
Zhejiang cuisine derives from the native cooking styles of the Zhejiang region. The dishes are not greasy, having but instead a fresh, soft flavor with a mellow fragrance.
The cuisine consists of at least four styles, each of which originates from different cities in the province: