Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Some traditional Foochow Food

Xian Cai (salted vegetables): It is made by putting leaf mustard under the sun until it is tender. Then layer crude salt between leaf mustard and press it. Finally, place a stone on the top layer and let the vegetables drain its moisture out for one week. The finished product is usually cooked into a soup with meat (pork, pig stomach, duck) or stir-fried with dried fish or pig blood. It tastes delicious.

Luo Bo Gan (dried radish) : Also named Cai Pu, Luo Bo Gan is made by first cutting fresh radish into small pieces and then preserving them with salt, drying them in the shade, and finally also sun-dried. Today, the Foochows use this preserved vegetables in a stir fry with eggs, in steaming of fish and in stir frying with fresh radish cake.

Luo Bo Si: In the winter, when radish is in season, fresh radish is shredded, air-dried, and sun-dried. It is rich in Vitamin D. It’s usually cooked together with eggs and meat. Sometimes it is used in fillings for steamed buns.

Luo Bo Qian: Luo Bo Qian is the sister product of Luo Bo Gan and Luo Bo Si. Fresh radish is sliced into coin-like shapes and air- and sun-dried. It’s usually used to make soup such as Luo Bo Qian Rou Pian Tang. It tastes delicious.

Dou Fu Pi: Dou Fu Pi is a kind of Tofu product. Before it is made into a dish, it is better to deep-fry it. This way, it tastes better

Large intestine: One of the major incomes in the agricultural society was raising pigs. Sellers could take internal organs away when pigs were sold. Foochow people stir-fry pig intestine with shredded ginger and lots of soy sauce and sugar, creating a delicious dish. Sometimes vinegar is used to cook this dish too.

Fun Chang: Fun Chang is often cooked with lots of ginger and wine. Just a simple stir fry dish but it takes a long time to clean and prepare properly.

Xia mi: This is made by sun-drying tiny shrimps. Sometimes Foochows will pound them to form cincaluk, or shrimp sauce.

Cu or vinegar: The Foochows make their own vinegar by deliberately making their rice wine sour. This is a good kind of vinegar. But today not many people will bother to prepare it.

Black fermented beans: Fermented beans may be juiced to make soy sauce. They are also used to make fermented beans spareribs, fermented beans oysters, and fermented beans dried fish.

Hong Zao (red wine lees): A special material used by Foochows for pickling food, Hong Zao is made by fermenting red yeast and rice, and an indispensable seasoning for Foochow people. It is often used to stir-fry or steam with meat such as Hong Zao Steamed Pork, Hong Zao Chicken, and Hong Zao Pig Tail and especially duck. We also use it to pickle mustard greens, and long beans.

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