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Cooking like a local in China

Hello,

Enjoying the local food of your expat country is great, but learning to cook the dishes yourself is even better. Please share what it's like cooking like a local in China.

What are some of the most popular local dishes that are easy to prepare?

What are the most common ingredients used in dishes in China? Where can you purchase them?

Is there a specific technique or a secret ingredient to master the local cuisine?

Are there resources available to teach you to cook like a local (classes, websites, etc.)?

What are the advantages of learning to prepare local dishes in China?

Thank you for sharing your experience.

Priscilla

Hello!!
I'm living in Guangzhou in the past 6 months and I haven't learned how to cook cantonese dishes. I look everywhere to find lessons but they only teach in mandarim 😟.
I'm learning a bit with my Ayí but the comunication is hard 😜.

Enjoying the local food of your expat country is great, but learning to cook the dishes yourself is even better. Please share what it's like cooking like a local in China. 
What are some of the most popular local dishes that are easy to prepare?     

There are several popular dishes that are indigenous to Linyi and other areas of China that are rather simple to prepare. One of the easiest to make is made with egg, green onion, water, soy sauce, and seasoning, where you simply need to cut the green onion into thin slices, add it to the boiling water in a skillet, add two raw eggs, soy sauce, and seasoning to the mixture, and cover for about 3-5 minutes on a medium boil stirring occasionally. It makes a great soup to enjoy on a cool day. One particular ingredient to add to most any food here is the original flavor of Lou Ganma sauce. We have decided to add some American ingredients to super-charge this all-famous sauce into a wonderful condiment. 

What are the most common ingredients used in dishes in China? Where can you purchase them?   

The most common ingredients used in preparing popular foods is peanut oil, soy sauce, salt, and rice vinegar, which can all be purchased at most any supermarket throughout China. 

Is there a specific technique or a secret ingredient to master the local cuisine?     

While there is no “secret” ingredient that I have found in watching others prepare various dishes, I have noticed that little attention is given to measuring specific quantities of each ingredient. Instead, a dash of this and a few pinches of that are added randomly to the food. This is a tough thing for many westerners to accept, especially those who grew up following the directions in a grandma’s cookbook or recipe cards (I am sure grandma did not measure out specific ingredients either when she prepared her many great-tasting dishes).

Are there resources available to teach you to cook like a local (classes, websites, etc.)?     

While there may be some classes or websites to help you learn how to cook, there is no substitute to being married to a Chinese woman who loves to cook the foods she grew up eating. Although she often kicks me out of the kitchen when she is preparing our meals, I manage to sneak in long enough to get a peak of what she is doing.

What are the advantages of learning to prepare local dishes in China?     

Let’s face it—in some areas of China, there are very few western fast-food restaurants where you can enjoy a western-style cheese burger or authentic pizza. So, it much easier and more healthy to adapt yourself to the Chinese cuisine. Even if you plan to stay in China for 1-2 years, you can take back some of the wonderful cuisine when you return to your home country. Most all of the ingredients needed for preparing these dishes are available in most countries, as well. Just be sure not to add too much salt or sugar to these dishes to avoid health problems and to help with staying fit and trim. Otherwise, you might find yourself enjoying your own cooking too much!

Bob E.

waw, nice my dear.
Alfons

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