The heat is on!
央视国际 2003年11月28日 12:36
While it is sometimes said that one who hasn't tasted roast duck has never been to Beijing, another aphorism has it that one who hasn't sampled Sichuan cuisine has never been to China.
Sichuan cuisine is one of the most famous Chinese cuisines in the world. Characterized by its spicy and pungent flavours, Sichuan cuisine, with a myriad of tastes, emphasizes the use of chili. Pepper and prickly ash is always in accompaniment, producing the typical exciting tastes.
Garlic, ginger and fermented soybean are also used in the cooking process.
Wild vegetables and meats are often chosen as ingredients, while frying (sometimes without oil), pickling and braising are basic cooking techniques.
Sichuan food is distinguished by the clever use of spices, resulting in dishes that are usually very hot. Their distinctive flavour is culinary evidence of the mountainous province's long geographical isolation. The fascinating variety and subtle use of flavouring additives in the region's cuisine helps to explain its appeal.
The majority of Chinese restaurants in Beijing feature what is known as "family style dishes" (jia chang cai), which are basically the most common types of food that any Chinese can make at home. These dishes are usually a combination of the spicy Sichuan style (chuan cai). True Sichuan-style restaurants have a special type of tea called Eight Treasures Tea. It is poured from a kettle with a yard-long spout, which the boy (it's usually a boy) wields skillfully. Aside from jia chang cai restaurants, there are also many places that are devoted to a certain type of food. Specialty restaurants include such classics as Donkey Flesh King, Dog Meat City and Fat Sister's Meat Pies.
Among the thousands of Sichuan cuisine restaurants, Yuxin Chuancai (Yuxin Sichuan Cuisine) and its four chains are considered the best by most visitors.
By Li Jin
Source: Beijing Weekend