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What To Eat In China: A Candid Traveler’s Guide

January 16, 2017

China is a global destination, for business and pleasure. The vast landscape, unique culture, and the unmatched history make for a truly unique and memorable experience. However, what most people do not realize is the richness in culinary diversity.

The culinary landscape in China is one of the most diverse. With 23 provinces and 56 ethnic groups, China never runs short of variety when it comes to food. The country has everything in the flavor spectrum. Any taste that your mouth (or heart desires) you can rest assured that you will get in China.

Furthermore, you need not go to the fanciest/expensive establishments to enjoy authentic and tantalizing dishes. Even small and modest eateries serve delicious Chinese delicacies. However, it is a tad difficult to pin down expressly on the best foods to try whilst touring China. Therefore, in the absence of a list of the best foods to try, we will delve into the must try foods in this what to eat in China read.

#1. The Tang Cu Li Ji/Sweet & Sour Pork – This dish features a sweet and sour flavor that leaves your tongue yearning for more. The dish is akin to Chinese takeaway dishes found in America. The dish goes well particularly with rice, owing to the mouthwatering sauce.

#2. Bamboo Shoots – While in the west, bamboos are mainly used as decorative plants; in China, bamboo is a delicacy and a very delicious one. More specifically, bamboo shoots. Harvested early in their development, usually a day old, the shoots are soft enough to cook and thereafter consume. Bamboo shoots retain a crunchy feel even after cooking and yield a milky feel too. The shoots taste is quite similar to the cooked baby corn.

#3. Tofu/Jia Chang Dou Fu – The jia chang dou fu is one of the mainstay dishes in Chinese restaurants. The interesting bit about the dish is that it tends to be prepared differently in every restaurant, but does retain the tofu foundation. Therefore, you get to enjoy a different version of the same dish whenever to take to a new restaurant.

#4. BBQ/Kao Rou – This is one the street dishes that you have to try. Mostly found in the city of Xi’an, Western China, this delicacy is delicious and easy to access as they are found on many streets. The dish is spicy as the different spices added to the meat give rise to unique taste among the different vendors.

#5. Soup Dumplings/Xiao Long Bao – One of the most popular street foods in China, the soup dumplings are a must try whilst on a visit to China. With the richly flavored filling made of ground pork, and savory soup (which contains ginger, Shaoxing wine, and scallions) encased in dumpling wrappers, you are left craving for more. Luckily, many vendors sell the delicacy. You need not search the length and breadth of China to enjoy some.

There are other delicacies to explore in China. However, the above dishes represent some of China’s unique culinary offerings. Be sure to try them. You most certainly will fall in love with them!

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