Top 15 Bizarre Foods In China
List of 15 Bizarre Foods In China
2.Thousand-Year-Old Eggs or Century Eggs
6.Bird’s Nest Soup
7.Bamboo Stuffed Rice
9. Stinky Tofu
13.Turtle Shell Jelly
According to legend, 5,000 years ago Chinese Empress Xi Ling-Shi discovered silk when a silkworm cocoon fell into her hot cup of tea. She unraveled the strange cocoon and, wrapping the thread around her finger, soon realized what an exquisite cloth it would make. Thus the history of one of the world's most coveted fabrics began.
In China and Vietnam, silkworms are fried; in Korea, silkworms (peondegi), are seasoned and boiled. Large cauldrons of boiling, brown silkworm pupae are not an uncommon sight on streets and in outdoor markets in South Korea. The odor of the steam rising from one of these pots is so distinctive that if you ever smell it, I guarantee you'll never forget it.
2. Thousand-Year-Old Eggs or Century Eggs
|Photo: Getty Images|
Century eggs are one of the traditional delicacies originating from China. This research investigated the difference between traditional and industrial methods of making century eggs, through various factors such as the number of steps required and time required for century eggs to complete their formation. Secondary to this comparison, the chemical process and scientific theory behind the formation of these eggs was explored. The traditional method involved wrapping a batch of eggs in a chemical clay and leaving them for 10 days. The industrial method, however, involved soaking the eggs in a chemical solution for a while. Both methods observed century egg formation in which the albumen proteins denature under an alkaline condition. However, the stated 10 day period of the traditional method was not enough to completely preserve the eggs. Future experiments could include chemically dissolving the eggshells in advance to reduce the diffusion barrier and distance for the alkaline conditions to reach the albumin of the egg. In turn, this would reduce the time required for century eggs to form, meaning that production costs could be lowered.
3. Sheep Penis
|Photo: The Bitten Word|
The Chinese have a bizarre food that may help if you are looking to boost libido. Sheep penis along with other animal penises and testicles are served as a remedy for the problem. Guolizhuang, a restaurant in China is dedicated to serving all types of dishes such as sheep gonads on a bed of curry and steamed sheep penis. The locals enjoy the flavor of this unusual food in China, but they also believe it is good for one’s health. Many of the customers at the restaurant are males looking to increase potency and sexual prowess. The Chinese believe testicles and penises are consumed to improve sexual health.
4. Beggar’s Chicken
|Photo: Komelia Beauty|
As with many dishes in China, the origin of beggar’s chicken is based on legend. No one is quite sure how the story really goes, just that the result is a deliciously tender and juicy chicken. A single beggar’s chicken is a six hour process. First, the bird must be stuffed with a savory pork mixture, then encased in clay, and roasted. When it is ready to serve, a waiter or lucky guest will tap the hardened clay with a mallet, revealing the fall-off-the-bone meat inside.
Beggar’s Chicken is typically served on a lotus leaf, a must-try if you’re heading to Hangzhou. This most unusual food in China has a savory aroma and is often eaten with rice and vegetables.
5. Snake Soup
|Photo: Travel Gluttons|
Snake soup, known in Cantonese as se gang (蛇羹), is a Chinese delicacy that contains as many as five different types of snake meat. Boiled with ingredients such as pork bones, chicken, and spices, this thick and flavorful soup is especially popular in Hong Kong during the winter months.
Made from snake meat and bones and simmered for several hours, the broth is infused with other ingredients like chicken, mushrooms, chopped ginger, chrysanthemum leaves, lemongrass, and other herbs and spices for a flavorful broth that is both sweet and somewhat spicy. The snake meat is shredded into thin slivers, and when cooked, looks and tastes similar to chicken, although it is a bit tougher.
The soup is known to be a hearty, warming meal that is ideal for the winter months, and is both a delicacy and a medicinal supplement. In Chinese medicine, snake meat is known as a ‘yang’ food, or a food that brings heat to the body. Thus, snake soup is most often consumed in the colder months to counteract the ‘yin’ of winter. It’s known to cure ailments such as arthritis, and is said to be good for circulation and the skin.
6. Bird’s Nest Soup
|Photo: Business Insider|
Bird’s Nest Soup, also known as Bird’s Saliva Soup, is one of the most famous but also most controversial delicacies in Chinese cuisine. Many people are willing to spend fortunes on this soup as they believe eating it will help them maintain their youth as well as have a long healthy life and a strong body. According to traditional Chinese medicine, it promotes good health, especially for the skin.
This soup has been a part of Chinese cuisine for generations. Chinese people began consuming bird’s nest soup during the Ming Dynasty and according to some tales, it is believed Zhen He, who was a Chinese explorer, diplomat, and fleet admiral, was the first person in Chinese history to eat Bird’s Nest Soup.
7. Bamboo Stuffed Rice
Rice Cooked in Bamboo Tubes, also called Bamboo Rice or Fragrant Bamboo Rice, is a type of roasted food consisting of rice and some spices, contained in a bamboo tube.
Generally, it is made by people who live in mountainous regions. The main ingredients of it are rice and meat, which are put into a fresh bamboo joint with enough water, sealed with banana leaves and baked on a charcoal fire until the bamboo turns black.
Originally, this kind of food was made by some minority nationalities, such as the Dai, Hani, Lahu, Bulang, Jinuo and Jingpo people in Yunnan Province. Due to its special flavor, Rice Cooked in Bamboo Tubes has become very popular among other ethnic groups, especially the Zhuang minority and Yao minority in Guangxi. You can find it easily in many snack stalls in these regions.
While walking the streets of China, find scorpions to be a tasty treat for those looking for something crazy to snack on. These fried small scorpions are served on a skewer stick. You can find this food on the streets of popular cities like Beijing, Shanghai, etc.. Thin scorpions are turned crispy with a nice seasoning. It is believed that eating strange street foods in China can make the blood hotter in cold conditions and can cure certain medical conditions.
9. Stinky Tofu
Stinky tofu is one of the most popular snack foods in Hong Kong, China and Taiwan - and its smell will probably be a memorable part of any trip. For first time visitors the stink can be overpowering - and catching a waft of it down a Beijing back street is likely to have your eyes watering. The dish is served from hundreds of street food vendors, hawkers and small restaurants.
Traditionally, it is tofu that has been fermented in a mix of fermented milk and a vegetable, meat and fish based brine, or some combination of the three. For truly smelly tofu the brine should be weeks or even months old.
10. Roasted Street Bird or Whole Pigeons
Yes, only because if you love the food served on a stick, this had to make it to your list. You may find this one quite impressive and most unusual foods in China because it is an entire street bird threaded on a stick, dipped in a marinade for all that flavor, and roasted.
****READ MORE: Top 20 Weirdest Foods In The US
11. Chicken balls
Chicken balls are a food consisting of small, spherical or nearly spherical pieces of chicken. They are prepared and eaten in several different cuisines.
Chicken balls (Chinese: 鸡球; pinyin: jī qiú) are a type of modern Chinese food served in Canada, Ireland, United States, and the United Kingdom as a staple of Chinese take-out. The dish consists of small chunks of fried chicken breast meat covered in a crispy batter coating. They are often served with curry sauce, sweet and sour sauce or plum sauce. These are largely unheard of in China, depending on the recipe and referred name.
|Photo: Asian Food Network|
Adopted by the Philippines in the 17th century, Balut is a Chinese dish. It is now considered a national dish of the Philippines. It’s also said the origin is from Chinese’s “Maidan,” or “feathered egg.” It may sound sickening to eat a partially developed duck, but in many places such as China, this dish is considered a delicacy. The fertilized egg is eaten while the egg is still warm and boiled for about 25 minutes. The yolk portion of this weird food from China is described as rich and creamy with an overall mild taste.
13. Fried seahorses
|Photo: Getty Images|
A seahorse is found on China streets as a snack and is one of the cutest small marine fish found in the sea. Seahorse is very salty and has a squid-like consistency. Found at several street markets, they are mostly found in soups or on kabobs and. Seahorses have sharp pieces that can get caught in your gums or teeth so you must be careful when consuming. The Chinese also believe there are great benefits to eating this weird food China eats and one Chinese proverb says that eating seahorse can keep an 80-year-old grandad young.
14. Turtle Shell Jelly
Also known as guilinggao, Turtle Jelly or tortoise jelly is a Chinese jelly-like dessert. It is traditionally made from several herbal products and various types of turtle’s bottom shell. This unique dish is also used for its medicinal purposes in China. It is said to be able to improve circulation, restore kidney functions, and assist muscle growth. Many believe that regular consumption of this strange food of China can improve skin by giving it a healthier complexion.
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