One thing every visitor to China should definitely try out is the local food. In the West, restaurants typically offer a watered-down version of Chinese food in order to cater to the Western palate. If you are someone who wants to try authentic Chinese food exactly the way the Chinese cook it, your trip to China is the best way to experience it. Don’t miss out on tasting these five amazing street foods.
Spicy black pepper soup
Known as hulatang in the local language, the spicy black pepper soup is a famous dish in Henan Province. It is basically a beef meatball soup with chunks of vegetables and buttery cabbage cooked for about 12 hours. The dish comes with a strong pepper flavor that gives it a fiery taste. But what makes the soup pretty unique is the inclusion of potato starch, which gives it a thick, sticky, and gloopy texture.
“Hulatang is a devilishly satisfying concoction. One may be scared at the door, but a little trust goes a long way, as each mouthful is a shock of delight. It becomes silky and decadent when the vegetables, a lucky meatball, and the glue holding it all together dissolve into a symphony for the newly warmed senses,” according to Sup China.
Steamed buns are a very popular breakfast item in China. If you see a streetside stall covered in steam with a large number of people huddled near it, you can be pretty sure that it is a baozi (the local term for steamed buns) stall. They are made using thick dough and are usually filled with seaweed, minced beef, and red beans. The moment you bite into that warm bun, the flavors of the filling will burst through your mouth, giving a heavenly experience.
Donkey meat sandwiches
You will have eaten sandwiches made from beef, chicken, and pork. But have you eaten a donkey meat sandwich? Probably not. Your Chinese trip gives you the opportunity to get a taste of this yummy street food. Try out the one available in Baoding in Hebei Province. For the filling, the donkey meat is shredded into juicy bits and mixed in with various sauces and spices. It has a very unique taste that you will likely not forget anytime soon.
The Chinese crepe, locally known as jianbing, is a very common breakfast street food. Though the type of crepe available on the streets varies by the city, the main ingredients usually remain the same. The dough is made from grain flour and wheat, which is then fried on a griddle with an egg acting as its base. The center filling typically consists of lettuce, scallions, cilantro, and some spicy red sauce. The Chinese have apparently been making crepes for about 5,000 years.
Thick rice balls
This is a dish that is very popular in Hong Kong and Shanghai. It’s basically hot steamed rice wrapped in a thin sheet of dough. The filling can either be savory or sweet, depending on your taste. If you like savory, go for a filling of flaked pork, pickled vegetables, and mushrooms. For those with a sweet tooth, opt for a filling of sesame seeds and sugar. It is usually eaten as a breakfast and is served with soy milk.