China as a country, and the Chinese people themselves are no strangers to exotic foods. Owing to the fact that they are one of the first civilizations ever to exist in the world, back then, there were really not a lot of options for the food which we are familiar with today. Therefore, food was caught, cooked, and served fresh from nature. The people then enjoyed the many options they could get from catching their food in the wild.
Because of this, the Chinese people began to enjoy foods so much that recipes were carried on for generations. They can even be seen now in some of the most rural parts of China where people rely heavily on tradition, and the practices that were taught to them by their elders. This article will include the local delicacies, the tastes and some of the most sought-after dishes in the region covered here so you know what you’re getting into next time you visit China and are feeling a little more adventures.
I am an exotic food lover and living in China was like a dream come true to me! With their street food meals to high end 20 course dinners, I experienced it all! And I'm so glad I did! The aromas, the flavors the preparation process were so unique that the food made me fall in love with the culture even more! Let's take a look at the exotic foods of china you need to try:
Exotic Foods of China
#1 Foie Gras
Our first dish is not a dish native to China, but it is definitely something that the locals enjoy on special occasions. Originating in Europe, foie gras is a specialty food product made of the liver of a duck or goose, meaning that it may be a vegan’s worst nightmare, but it tastes amazing. According to French law, foie gras is defined as the liver of a duck or goose fattened by gavage, a type of food administration done forcibly through a tube leading through the throat to the stomach. In Spain and other countries, it is occasionally produced using natural feeding to make it more humane.
Exotic Foods of China
# 2 Century Eggs
This egg is also known as the ‘preserved egg’. Alhough it may sound like a serious chore that passes from generation to generation, it does not actually take a whole century to make. The recipe concept came from a farmer who lived during the ancient times of China. He came across a few duck eggs that had been preserving in muddy water and decided to eat one. Apparently, he liked it so much he brought them home. He then decided to replicate the process to get the same flavor he got from the muddy water. This practice is followed to this day. With mire hygienic preparational methods. These days, the eggs are soaked in a large volume of strong black tea, lime, salt, and freshly burned wood ashes to achieve the same effect.
Exotic Foods of China #3 Fried Bee Pupa
Bee pupa, or pupae are what can be referred to baby bees. Pupa, are at the stage of the development process where they are only a tiny organism hidden under a capping. These are commonly prepared by cooking them until they are golden brown. Other common methods of preparing them are steamed bee pupa, stir-fried bee pupa, crispy and many more. While it may seem unusual to eat bees, many other insects are also eaten and enjoyed in China.
These are eaten commonly throughout the region of China. By both the locals and the tourists that visit from time to time. According to avid eaters, these worms share the same flavor as chicken and beef and have a very chewy texture. These worms are eaten alongside vegetables, in fried rice and dipped in sauces that accentuate their flavor.
Bird's Nest Soup
The next delicacy on our list is actually made from a swiftlet’s nest. This swiftlet is found deep within dark caves. Their nests are made carefully with their own gummy saliva that are produced by glands under their tongues. This saliva acts like a glue, binding the twigs together and hardening when it is exposed to air. This soup is considered a delicacy and is eaten in every region in China.
Appearing to look like a potato, the beggar’s chicken can be derived from the tale of a beggar who lived in ancient times who had nothing on him but a knife, a fire and a hungry belly. He is said to have solved his hunger problem by slaughtering and gutting a chicken, smothering it in yellow mud and roasting it on the fire. This beggar’s chicken replicates this tale and therefore looks like a small, yellow potato tucked in itself. Beggar’s Chicken is typically served on a lotus leaf, a must-try if you’re heading to Hangzhou.
Though this snack has its roots in the Philippines, because of the neighboring country and the geographical likeness, balut is now eaten in China as well. Balut is a partially developed egg that is very popular among the locals as it is eaten as a very popular street food. It is also said to be a major craving of some pregnant Asian women.
The foods and dishes mentioned above prove that by staying true your roots and traditions, you maintain your uniqueness. The people of China know this and have made their mark on the world by having some of the most exotic dishes in the world. They may be exotic when you’re an outsider looking in, but for the Chinese people, these dishes represent tradition, and home.
Interested to know more about China? Read about the most interesting facts of China you probably didn't know.