Chiuchow Cuisine

Chiuchow cuisine or Chaozhou cuisine originates from Chiuchow, a city of China in the Guangdong Province, not far from Canton. Hence the cooking style is very similar to Cantonese cuisine. However, Chiuchow cuisine does have some unique dishes that are not in Cantonese cuisine.

Chiuchow cuisine is known for serving rice soup, in addition to steamed rice with meals, which is quite different from Cantonese porridge or congee which is very thick and gluey. The Chiuchow rice soup is very watery with the rice sitting loosely at the bottom of the bowl. Authentic Chiuchow restaurants serve very strong oolong tea in very tiny cups before and after the meal.

There is a famous feast in Chiuchow cuisine called “Gau Dai Gui” (九大簋) which roughly means “nine big courses” in the dinner. Chiuchow chefs pride themselves on their skill in vegetable carving. Carved vegetables are used as garnishes on cold dishes and on the banquet table.

Chiuchow is also known for a late night dinner called “Da Loun” (打冷). Chiuchow people like to eat out in restaurants or at roadside food stalls close to midnight before they go to bed. Some restaurants stay open till dawn.

Some famous Chiuchow dishes include, among others:

Steamed goose
Cold crab
Fun Goh (a steamed dumpling filled with dried raddish, peanuts and ground meat)
Shrimp balls
Oyster pancake
Tiet Kwun Yum (a premium grade Oolong Tea)

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