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Sichuan cuisine

Updated: Jul 20, 2017 travelchina.gov.cn Print

Sichuan cuisine, namely Sichuan-style dishes, is one of the four great traditional Chinese cuisines. It has a rich repertoire that amalgamates highlights from diverse cooking methods. It is known across the country or even the world for its exceptional way of cooking and superbly pungent and spicy seasonings.

As the most unique Chinese cuisine, Sichuan cuisine primarily uses a variety of common ingredients while emphasizing a numbing sensation, spiciness, and aroma. Even in simple poached dishes, one can detect a hint of spiciness. The most well-known dishes include: Shredded Pork in Garlic Sauce, Kung Pao Chicken, Water-cooked Fish, Water-cooked Fillets, Sliced Beef/Beef Tripe/Ox Tongue in Chili Sauce, Spicy Deep Fried Chicken, Mapo Tofu, Double-cooked Pork and Dongpo Pork Knuckle, to name a few.

Chengdu, capital of Sichuan province where Sichuan cuisine originated, has won the title of city of gastronomy from UNESCO.

Dandan Noodles

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It is a famous snack that is commonplace but has a special flavor in Sichuan province. Vendors carry the noodles along the street using a shoulder pole (Dandan), hence the name.

The noodles have a bright color, aroma of preserved cabbage and sesame paste, spicy and sour taste, thin noodles, the saozi meat is crispy, fresh but not sickly, and contain diced meat. Dandan noodles are often called the best noodles made from cooked wheat in the Sichuan style. Fine and smooth noodles covered with red pepper oil, minced meat, preserved cabbage in the Sichuan style, sprouts, peppers, red soy sauce, minced garlic, tine peas, and chopped green onions etc. combining to make a bowl of delicious and spicy noodles.

In 2013, the dish was first chosen as one of “Top 10 Noodles in China” by the Ministry of Commerce and China Hospitality Association.

Double-cooked Pork

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Double-cooked Pork (Hui Guo Rou, also called“Ao Guo Rou” in western Sichuan) is a traditional dish and a common way to cook pork which is usually considered as the most representative dish in Sichuan cuisine. Almost every family in Sichuan can cook it. Double-cooked Pork was originated in the rural areas of Sichuan and is famous for its special meaty taste and shiny brown color which is good for the kidney and the blood according to TCM doctors. 

Double-cooked (Hui Guo) means “cook again”. As the saying goes, “it is as if you’ve never been to Sichuan if you haven’t eaten Double-cooked Pork”. The dish can be found in most Chinese restaurants and it is very rare to find those who don’t like the dish.

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