Chinese food is not always the same. Not all of the dishes are the same as well. There are regional variations as well as specific ingredients to keep in mind when you are picking up a Chinese food chopstick for the first time. Here are the most common dishes available you will encounter and some pointers to remember them:
In the southern region of China, spicy foods are the norm. Take the Roasted Pork Dumplings, for example. In southern China, the pork is boiled and served with a garlic sauce, then sprinkled with minced ginger, a paste of red chilies, and a touch of soy sauce. They are then placed in bamboo mats for a few hours before being served.
Southwest Chinese Food
There are two basic types of Southwest Chinese food: Cantonese and Szechwan. Cantonese is a spicy food that is native to Southeast Asia. The dish is dry-fried, with lots of garlic and various spices.
Szechwan cuisine is the national cuisine of Tibet, though the majority of the food there is Szechwanese. It is mainly made up of vegetables, black vinegar, and a sweet sauce, making it a very different type of Chinese food.
All Asian Flavors
Many Asian countries have their own distinct flavor, including Indonesia, Vietnam, Cambodia, and India. Some of the most famous dishes of these countries include fresh fruits, fresh vegetables, and sometimes rice. Since so many people come from these countries, you may find this type of Chinese food is hard to find at some fast food restaurants.
With Creamy Sauces
Most Asian recipes have ingredients like brown or soy sauce. You will be able to find Chinese flavors in both yellow and white soy sauces, but if you choose, you can try using a Chinese soy sauce, which is sweeter and less acidic. You will find many Chinese dishes with a similar ingredient list.
Spicy food chop suey comes from the countries that border the East China Sea, such as Burma, Thailand, and Laos. Like all Chinese cooking, there are many dishes that fall into this category. You will want to check out the recipe book before purchasing it.
Japanese foods are sweeter and creamier than the other types of Chinese food. Try having a classic Japanese roll filled with pineapple, or adding strawberry toppings to a bowl of boiled spinach. The rolls are a popular side and are great for lunch or dinner.
This region consists of the northern part of China, including Tibet, Mongolia, and Russia. There are many snacks and desserts that are made from grains, such as puffs, cakes, and cookies. You will be able to find a selection of traditional Chinese soups and stews as well as Americanized versions, as this area is often a melting pot of cultures.
Soybeans, a plant that looks like grass, are used to make tofu. Sichuan, a major Chinese city, is famous for its tofu and many Chinese people from the area bring their Chinese to America for easier access to the dish. Some dishes, such as the tofu hot pot, are quite delicious and good for you.
Cuisines from Inner Asia
There are two main groups of cuisines from Inner Asia, the Chinese and the Japanese. The Chinese take a lot of influence from their central and southern regions, while the Japanese have been influenced by China’s inland region for centuries.
Even though these differences are common among Chinese cuisine, there are still several cuisines that vary from culture to culture, and even from one country to another. It is helpful to check out a cookbook to find out the regional styles, but sometimes, cultural differences are just too great to reconcile.