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Jiangsu cuisine

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

Jiangsu cuisine, one of the eight culinary traditions of Chinese cuisine, is sometimes simply called Su cuisine and consists of Jinling dishes, Huaiyang (the region surrounding the lower reaches of the Huai and Yangtze rivers) dishes, Suzhou-Wuxi dishes and Xuhai (originating from Xuzhou and Lianyungang) dishes. Jiangsu cuisine has also received national and even international acclaim.

It is characterized by mild, fresh, salty, and slightly sweet flavors. Special care is given to retaining the natural flavor and juices of the ingredients, as well as seasoning of the soup.

In terms of cooking methods, Jiangsu cuisine uses stewing, dry braising, simmering and warming. It makes great use of a variety of ingredients. In the imperial court, Jiangsu cuisine ranks second while state banquets today predominately serve the cuisine.

Jiangsu cuisine is known to be elegant and subtle, refined in both flavor and presentation, as well as versatile and exquisite in slicing techniques. From artistic cold dishes, decorative hot dishes, vegetable and fruit sculpturing, to deboning the animal without damaging the overall shape, the slicing skill of Jiangsu cuisine chefs is clearly exquisite.

Braised Pork Ball in Brown Sauce

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Braised Pork Ball in Brown Sauce is one of the most popular Yangzhou dishes and a traditional dish in Huaiyang cuisine in Jiangsu province. There are two ways to cook the pork ball -- steaming and braising. The main ingredient, pork balls, are made of 60 percent fat pork and 40 percent lean pork and are mashed with scallions, ginger, eggs and other ingredients. Then they are shaped into meatballs as big as a fist. 

The rib pork is mashed and shaped into balls. After stewing the meatballs on low heat, the surface becomes rough because of the unbalanced portion of fat and lean meat.

Braised Pork Ball in Brown Sauce requires precise heat control. The meatballs will become soft but not greasy after being stewed for 40 minutes. There are two ways to cook the braised pork ball: boiling in clear soup, steaming and braising.

Steamed Chicken and Soft-Shelled Turtle Soup

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Steamed Chicken and Soft-Shelled Turtle Soup is a traditional dish in Suqian, Jiangsu province. It is made with soft-shelled turtle and chicken which is a delicacy in early spring and winter.

Steamed Chicken and Soft-Shelled Turtle Soup is often served as a main dish at banquets because of its pretty plating, rich nutrition, pure and soft taste.

After the establishment of People’s Republic of China (Oct 1st, 1949), Mao Zedong, Liu Shaoqi, Chen Yi and other leaders of PRC tasted Steamed Chicken and Soft-Shelled Turtle Soup when they were on an inspection tour in Xuzhou, Jiangsu province. It became much more famous after being improved by Pei Jihong, a deceased renowned chef.

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