The 10 Foods You Must Try When Visiting Beijing
The food of Beijing ranges from spectacular imperial dishes to comforting home-style dishes. In this ancient capital, you can absolutely fond some tasty local dishes. Below are 10 kinds of food that you should have a try in Beijing.
1. Beijing Roast Duck
Beijing roast duck, or Peking Duck, is the epitome of Beijing cuisine and the dish you must try when visiting Beijing. The dish is mostly esteemed for the thin, crispy skin, with authentic versions of the dish serving mostly skin and little meat.
While sauces and accompaniments will vary between restaurants (the most common being scallion and cucumber) it is difficult to go wrong with roast duck in Beijing. If you eat at one of Beijing’s more famous duck restaurants it will also be accompanied by a short demonstration on the correct way to assemble a Peking Duck wrap using chopsticks.
2.Instant Boiled Mutton
Instant Boiled Mutton is a famous Beijing dish which dates back to the Yuan Dynasty. Sliced mutton will be put in a hotpot and boiled in soup. It is usually served with sesame sauce, preserved bean curd, leek flower and sliced spring onion
3.Jiaozi — Chinese Dumplings
Jiaozi is another dish that can be found anywhere across Beijing and while there are a number of better-known dumpling restaurants and chains, some of the tastiest dumplings (and most interesting experiences) can be found in smaller, less conspicuous family eateries where dumplings are the only thing on the menu. At these restaurants, you can often sit and watch the next batch of dumplings being rolled and filled as you eat. A plate of Jiaozi with a soy sauce, vinegar and chilli dip is synonymous with Northern Chinese cuisine.
Here’s a must-try dish for veggies. Named after the Qianlong Emperor in the Qing Dynasty, legend has it that the dish was ordered by the emperor at a small, nondescript restaurant during his tour outside of the imperial palaces in disguise and was spoken highly of by him. Though made of cabbage leaves with sesame sauce, vinegar, and honey (and sometimes with black sesame seeds atop the dish), it has been one of the most famous traditional dishes of Beijing and can be found in most of the Beijing cuisine restaurants today.
5. Mongolian Hot Pot – Menggv Huoguo（蒙古火锅)
While technically from Mongolia (I guess), Mongolian hotpot has become a winter staple in Beijing. Similar to the spicy Sichuan hot pot, Mongolian hot pot is just a little less spicy. Pick from a variety of ingredients and boil them in the hot broth before dipping your veggies, meats, and tofu into a sauce of your choice. Personally, I’m a huge fan of the sesame sauce.
One thing I love about Mongolian hot pot is that they still use charcoal to heat the pot, unlike most Sichuan hot pot places that use electricity. There’s just something about a steamy, charcoal pot on a cold day!
When you go for Mongolian hot pot, you’re going to want a good mix of meats and veggies, however, one thing you definitely shouldn’t skip (unless you’re vegetarian) is the lamb! Just be sure to cook your lamb while holding it between your chopsticks, because it will cook in a matter of seconds. If you plop the lamb into the pot like all the rest of your veggies, you’ll end up with very overcooked meat.