When you visit China and spend a few days among Chinese, you will realize how important the food is for locals. Apparently, everything revolves around food. People meet every night to dine out, businesses are made when eating, you can find food anywhere in the streets and there are more restaurants than people (ok, that’s an exaggeration). The first think people ask you when they see you is “Have you already eaten?” and once you finish eating they make sure you are totally full. Some meals can last up to two hours!
Visiting China can turn into an unforgettable culinary journey. You can discover new spicy flavors, herbs and spices, try some things you wouldn’t normally consider edible and experience unexpected taste and aroma. Every province can welcome you with different type of food, from fresh sea food to grilled dog’s meat. Here is the list of 5 must try dishes when travelling in China.
Baozi are traditional steamed Chinese dumplings filled with pork meat and vegetables served with soy oil and chives. They are mainly eaten for breakfast. Real jam! It might feel odd to eat dumplings in the morning but you will quickly get used to it.
Jiaozi are also Chinese dumplings crescent-shaped filled with a minced stuffing and steamed, boiled or fried. They are incredibly soft and watery and their taste is so much different from baozi. Jiaozi are served with spicy or sweet chili sauce for lunch and dinner.
4. Beijing duck
There are several reasons why you should not miss on Beijing duck. One of them is its thin and crispy skin, Mandarin pancakes which it is often served with and green onions. Together it’s heaven in your mouth. Moreover, it’s traditional Chinese dish so there are no excuses not to eat it!
5. Chinese noodles
Have you ever eaten an instant Chinese soup with noodles? If so, forget about it in China. Noodle meals are always fresh, hot and extremely tasty. The most delicious one is a beef noodle soup made of stewed or red braised beef, beef broth, vegetables and Chinese noodles perfectly spiced.
As you can see, Chinese cuisine is not only about rice. Of course, rice is served with most of the meat and vegetable dishes but there is also a great variety of other Chinese meals you should try. Additionally, the street food is easy to access anywhere so even if you get hungry at 3 am in the morning, you can still enjoy a plate of Chinese dumplings or a bowl of Chinese chicken soup.
Agness is a Polish vagabond who, after graduation, left her comfort zone and set off for a journey of her lifetime to China in 2011. She has been constantly travelling the world since then (slowly, but surely as she says), living like a local for less than $25 a day. She became a passionate photographer and adventure blogger sharing her life enthusiasm and travel experience with everyone around.