Chinese Cooking Art

Last Update: 2008-7-20; By Christyinguilin

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Chinese Food
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Chinese cooking embodies the food culture tradition of Chinese nation. It has many distinctive features. 

It has varied flavor. Since our country is very large and has abundant resources with differences in climate, products, customs and habits, it has developed many food flavors over a long period of time. There has been the saying "rice in the south and noodles in the north". The flavor is divided into sweetness in the south, saltiness in the north, sourness in the east and hotness in the west, Bashu (Sichuan), Qilu (Shandong), Huaiyang (Jiangsu) and Yuemin (Guangdong and Fujian).

There are four seasons. Because there are four seasons in a year, people eat food according to the seasons. Our country has always seasoned and matched food with the variation of season. The flavor is pure and thick in winter while light and cool in summer. The food are mostly braised, stewed, simmered in winter and cold and dressed with sauce and frozen in summer.

It places an emphasis on aesthetic feeling. Chinese cooking has  traditionally placed an emphasis on the aesthetic feeling of dishes and paid attention to the harmony and agreement of the food's color, fragrance, flavor, shape and utensil. The aesthetic feeling of dishes has all around representations. Whether it is a red radish or a green cabbage, all kind of designs can be carved out, which has a unique style, attains the harmony of color, fragrance, flavor, shape and beauty and provides people with highly unified special enjoyment in spirit and material.

It pays attention to temperament and interest. The cooking of our country has placed an emphasis on taste and interest since very early time. It not only has strict requirements on the color, fragrance and flavor of meals and snacks, but also has certain requirements for the naming of dishes, the manner of tasting the flavor, the rhythm of having dinner and the insertion of entertainment. The names of Chinese dishes can be called reaching for perfection and suiting both refined and popular tastes. The dishes may be named realistically according to the main ingredients, supplementary ingredients and seasoning or for the cooking methods or called in accordance with historical literary quotations, myths, legends, the interesting events of celebrities taking food, the image of dishes, such as "family collections (made of all sorts of seafood and river food)", "red lion's head (fried meatballs in brown sauce)", "beggar's chicken" (roasted chicken in yellow mud).

It combines food with medicine. The cooking techniques of our country are closely related to Chinese medical treatment and health care. We believe that food and traditional medicine have the same origin and actions. We can take advantage of the medicinal properties of the raw materials and turn them into all kinds of food, thereby accomplishing the purpose of preventing and curing certain diseases.

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