Hello, thank you for the question. I have provided an overview of the
major styles of Chinese cuisine below, including general links on
dining culture, recipes, etc. I hope this helps. Please don't hesitate
to request clarification if necessary.
----------------General Links on Chinese Cuisine----------------------------
4 Regional Styles with Recipes
-- Food Culture
History of Chinese Cuisine
Chinese Cuisine (Book)
Google Directory on Chinese Cuisine
Chinese Cuisine, Chinese Food in Chinese Culture and History
------------Categorized Chinese Cuisine Traditions----------------------------
"Cantonese cuisine (??, pinyin: yuè cài) originates from the region
around Canton in southern China's Guangdong province. Of the various
regional styles of Chinese cuisine, Cantonese is the best-known
outside China; a "Chinese restaurant" in a Western country will
usually serve mostly Cantonese food, or an adaptation thereof. The
prominence of Cantonese cuisine outside China is likely due to the
disproportionate emigration from this region, as well as the relative
accessibility of some Cantonese dishes to foreign palates. Cantonese
dishes rarely use much "hot" spice like chilli, unlike, for instance,
"Cantonese cooking is considered to be the finest of China's regional cuisines."
"Beef with Tomatoes
Cantonese Steamed Chicken
Pineapple Chicken with Sweet and Sour Sauce
Sweet and Sour Pork, Cantonese Style"
"Common preparation techniques in Szechuan cuisine include stir
frying, steaming and basting. Beef is more common in Szechuan cuisine
than it is in other Chinese cuisines, perhaps due to the widespread
use of oxen in the region. Stir-fried beef is often cooked until
chewy, while steamed beef is sometimes coated with rice flour to
produce a rich gravy."
"Learn more about fiery Szechuan cuisine, known for its mouthburning
dishes such as Kung Pao Chicken, Szechuan Noodles, Orange Beef, and
"Sichuan Cuisine, known more commonly in the West as Szechuan Cuisine,
is one of the most famous Chinese cuisines in the world. Characterized
by its spicy and pungent flavors, Sichuan cuisine, with a myriad of
tastes, emphasizes the use of chili. Pepper and prickly ash are always
in accompaniment, producing the typical exciting tastes. Garlic,
ginger and fermented soybean are also used in the cooking process.
Wild vegetables and meats such as are often chosen as ingredients,
while frying, frying without oil, pickling and braising are used as
basic cooking techniques.
It can be said that one who doesn't experience Sichuan food has never
Typical menu items: Hot Pot; Smoked Duck; Kung Pao Chicken; Twice
Cooked Pork; Mapo Dofu"
"Hot and Sour Soup
Sauteed Prawns in Tomato Sauce
"Hunan Cuisine, sometimes called Xiang Cuisine (?? pinyin xia¯ng cài),
consists of the cuisines of the Xiangjiang region, Dongting Lake and
western Hunan Province, in China.
While similar to Szechuan cuisine, Hunan Cuisine is often spicier and
contains a larger variety of ingredients. Hunan is known for its
liberal use of chilli peppers, shallots and garlic. Many Hunan dishes
are characterized by a strongly flavored brown sauce. Some rely on
sweetness from ingredients such as honey; sweet and sour sauces are
also characteristic of the style."
"Hunan cuisine consists of local cuisines of Xiangjiang Region,
Dongting Lake and Xiangxi coteau areas. It is characterized by thick
and pungent flavors. Chili, pepper and shallot are usually necessities
in this variation.
Typical menu items: Dongan Chicken; Peppery and Hot Chicken"
Mandarin (Beijing/ Northern China)
"Mandarin cuisine is a cooking style in Beijing, China. It is known as
ji¯ng cài (??) among Chinese.
Since Beijing has been the Chinese capital city for centuries, its
cuisine was influenced by people from all over China. The Emperor's
Kitchen was a term referring to the cooking places inside of the
Forbidden City of Beijing where thousands of cooks from the different
parts of China showed their best cooking skills to please royal
families and officials. Therefore, it is at times rather difficult to
determine the actual origin of a dish as the term "Mandarin" is
generalized and refers not only to Beijing, but other provinces as
"Mongolian Hot Pot
Mongolian Lamb with Scallions
Dofu Fa (dessert)"
Shanghai (Eastern China)
<<Shanghai cuisine, known as Hu cai (?? in pinyin: hù cài) among the
Chinese, is one of the most popular and celebrated cuisines in China.
Shanghai does not have a definitive cuisine of its own, but refines
those of the surrounding provinces (mostly from adjacent Jiangsu and
Zhejiang coastal provinces). What can be called Shanghai cuisine is
epitomized by the use of alcohol. Fish, eel, crab, chicken are
"drunken" with spirits and usually served raw. Salted meats and
preserved vegetables are also commonly used to spice up the dish.
The use of sugar is common in Shanghainese cuisine and, especially
when used in combination with soy sauce, effuses foods and sauces with
a taste that is not so much sweet but rather savory. A typical
Shanghai household will consume sugar at the same rate as soy sauce,
even excluding pastry baking. Non-natives tend to have difficulty
identifying this usage of sugar and are often surprised when told of
the "secret ingredient.">>
"Lion's Head Meatballs
Red Cooked Chicken"
"Shandong cuisine is characterized by quick ? frying, stir- frying,
braising, and deep ? fat frying. Its dishes are crisp, tender,
delicious, and greasy with salty and some sweet and sour flavors. Its
main condiment is salt, but it also uses salted fermented soybeans and
People in Shandong like to eat onions and use onions as a seasoning.
The dishes include braised sea cucumber with onion, cartilage stewed
with onions, and meat stewed with onions. Roast meats are also served
with onions. The onions are first deep ? fat fried before the dishes
are quick ? fried, stir ? fried, stewed, or sauted so they absorb the
onion flavor. People in Shandong also like foods made of wheat flour,
such as steamed buns, baked buns, pancakes, crisp cakes, and big cakes
stuffed with minced meats."
"Consisting of Jinan cuisine and Jiaodong cuisine, Shandong cuisine,
clean, pure and not greasy, is characterized by its emphasis on aroma,
freshness, crispness and tenderness. Shallots and garlic are
frequently used as seasonings so Shandong dishes taste pungent. Soups
are given much emphasis in Shandong cuisine. Thin soups are clear and
fresh while creamy soups are thick and taste strong. Jinan chefs are
adept at deep-frying, grilling, pan-frying and stir-frying while
Jiaodong chefs are famous for cooking seafood with a fresh and light
Typical menu items: Bird's Nest Soup; Yellow River Carp in Sweet and Sour sauce"
"Combining Fuzhou Cuisine, Quanzhou Cuisine and Xiamen Cuisine, Fujian
Cuisine is renowned for its choice seafood, beautiful color and
magical tastes of sweet, sour, salt and savory. The most distinct
feature is their "pickled taste".
Typical menu items: Buddha Jumping Over the Wall; Snow Chicken; Prawn
with Dragon's Body and Phoenix's tail"
"Jiangsu Cuisine, also called Huaiyang Cuisine, is popular in the
lower reaches of the Yangtze River. Using fish and crustaceans as the
main ingredients, it stresses their freshness. Its carving techniques
are delicate, of which the melon carving technique is especially well
known. Cooking techniques consist of stewing, braising, roasting, and
simmering. The flavor of Huaiyang Cuisine is light, fresh and sweet
and its presentation is delicately elegant.
Typical menu items: Stewed Crab with Clear Soup, Long-boiled and
Dry-shredded Meat, Duck Triplet, Crystal Meat, Squirrel with Mandarin
Fish, and Liangxi Crisp Eel"
"Comprising local cuisines of Hanzhou, Ningbo, and Shaoxing, Zhejiang
Cuisine is not greasy. It wins its reputation for freshness,
tenderness, softness, and smoothness of its dishes with their mellow
fragrance. Hangzhou Cuisine is the most famous one of the three.
Typical menu items: Sour West Lake Fish, Longjing Shelled Shrimp, Beggar's Chicken"
"Anhui Cuisine chefs focus much more attention on the temperature in
cooking and are good at braising and stewing. Often ham will be added
to improve taste and candied sugar added to gain freshness.
Typical menu items: Stewed Snapper; Huangshan Braised Pigeon"
Chinese Budhist Cuisine
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