Chinese foods and cuisines are one of the wealthiest and most diverse culinary heritages in the world. Chinese cuisine is a general term used for the dishes of various regions and ethnic groups in China. In Chinese culture, a meal typically consists of two general components.
The first one is starch or carbohydrate source like rice, noodles, or mantou and the second category includes dishes like vegetables, fish, or meat. Chinese recipes crystallize the history of thousands of years of Chinese cooking with great technologies, rich categories, and unique style.
Chinese cuisines originated in the different regions of China. It has been introduced to the other parts of the world and Southern Asia to North Asia and Western Europe.
Chinese Foods and Recipes
Chinese cuisine stands among the three world cuisines (Chinese cuisine, French cuisine, & Turkish cuisine). As new food sources and techniques were introduced in China, Chinese cuisine gradually evolved over the centuries.
China had already discovered grill, grilled fish, and other foods over 5000 years ago. During the Zhou dynasty (1045-221 BC) in China, food was mainly grains such as beans, brown rice or barley, etc. The most famous dish in the Zhou dynasty was “Ba Zheng” (Eight Treasures).
Chinese people started to have white rice or peeled rice in the late Zhou dynasty, but it was scarce and expensive. Sour flavors were welcomed by China’s people in the Qin dynasty (221-206 BC).
According to the historical documents of bamboo slips found from the tombs, plums were another cooking spice by then. Cinnamon, green onion, soybean source, and vinegar were also used in Chinese recipes during the Qin dynasty.
By the Han dynasty (206 BC – 220 AD), producers of various grain food became organized, and cooking also reflected it. Because of Buddhism’s introduction and influence and the promotion of Liang Wu DI of the South dynasty, vegetarian dishes had a prominent effect on Chinese foods and cuisines.
During the Tang Dynasty (618-906 AD), fascination with exotic and highly specialized food started in China. The tradition of drinking tea influenced the earlier “Southern and Northern Dynasties” during the 5th century AD. During the Song dynasty (618-907 AD), Chinese foods and cuisines blossomed, which enabled the mixing of foods, medicines, and even religions.
Strict rules were established for maintaining the right balance in meals, and how the food can be prepared, processed, and served were also expanded. Many foreign food ingredients and food preparation methods were brought to China during the time of the Yuan Dynasty (from the early 13th century to 1368), also known as the Mongol Dynasty.
During the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644), sea trading roots were established, and it increased the influence of western culture on Chinese foods and cuisines. Since the formation of the People’s Republic of China, a lot of innovation in Chinese recipes took place.
Traditional cuisines of various regions & ethnic groups also appeared in the list of restaurants. Chinese foods and cuisines are very famous in the world for their color, flavor, and aroma. Once you eat Chinese food, you will fall in love with the Chinese recipes.