Besides being one of the most picturesque cities in China, Guilin's local cuisine is quite special. Being located on the beautifulLi River, fish is a large part of people's diets. A visit toGuilinjust isn't complete without sampling some of the local food.
Guilin cuisine is a combination of Cantonese and Hunanese styles. It is characterized by its sweetness and the delicate use of spices, particularly chili. Many foods are have a sour or spicy taste. Stir-frying and steaming are the most common cooking methods of Guilin Cuisine. Wild plants and animals, which are rarely eaten in the West, are sometimes found in Guilin Cuisine.
This renowned traditional home-style dish is made with streaky pork with skin, mung bean flour, lotus leaf, "GuilinFermented Tofu", and all sorts of spices. The pork is stewed with soy sauce, fried with oil, and then coated with the mung bean flour. After this, it is wrapped up in the lotus leaf and put on a plate, which is steamed in a bamboo steamer over a hot fire. The end result is soft, tasty, and yellow and green in color, with the alluring scent of the lotus leaf. Fatty but not greasy, this dish is capable of clearing away heat and toxic matter and lowering cholesterol.
A specialty dish ofGuilin, the suckling pig is fed with glutinous rice or some other kinds of rice, which makes its meat and skin delicate. It is roasted using unique methods and skillful control of the fire. After it is cooked its skin appears to be yellow, lustrous and transparent. It is then cut it in slices after which shallot, soy sauce and white sugar are added. This succulent pork dish is incredibly tasty and crisp. In addition it can nourish the heart and beautify the face.
The main ingredient in this local snack is rice flour, which is first put into a wooden mold shaped like a horse hoof. Various fillings including brown sugar, water chestnut powder and sesame powder are then added. The cake is then steamed over a hot fire and, when taken out, is ready to eat. Easy to make, Water Chestnut Cakes can also be quite soft and tasty to munch on. They are generally made and sold on the spot by individual stall-keepers scattered on the streets throughout the city. Passersby can buy and eat them on the spot, making it a very convenient snack.
Steamed top-grade glutinous rice made into lumps is the main ingredient in this snack. Sweet mung bean paste is used as a main filling, accompanied by some fried sesame and shallots, oil and rice. This scrumptiously filling snack is full of flavor. Occasionally sausage and boiled beef are used as special fillings. InGuilin, this snack is often eaten for breakfast.
The noodles of Guilin are famous throughout China and can be found in places such asShanghaiand Hong Kong. Of course for the most authentic Guilin Rice Noodles, visitors must eat them in their home town, Guilin.
The rice noodles are made from oil and rice flour. The noodles are cooked in broth and served in a bowl of soup made from pork, beef, garlic, peanuts, peppers, and radishes. The peppers are added by the diner, so visitors who do not like spicy food can simply not add it.
It is a staple of Guilin people's diet and is a wonderful and cheap dish. During meal times the many small rice noodle restaurants are always packed with diners.
This snack is made by steaming some top-grade glutinous rice and grinding it until the rice melts like lumps of cotton. The glutinous paste is then taken out and made into balls, which are steamed in a bamboo steamer. Most of the rice cakes have fillings such as mung bean paste, lotus seed paste, sesame and osmanthus sugar. The quality can vary. It is best eaten hot and accompanied by white sugar or cooked bean flour. This is one ofGuilin's most renowned snacks.