A Journey of Delicacy Regimen
Fujian cuisine, also known as Min cuisine, originated from Fuzhou and gradually grows into three branches, Fuzhou, South Min and West Min, which is regarded as generalized Min cuisine.
Min cuisine is known for cooking delicacies on the basis of appearance, fragrance and taste, especially highlighting the latter two. Its refreshing thickness and meaty fragrance, as well as the extensive range of soup types, characterizes itself as impressive in the world of cooking.
Fuzhou cuisine stresses lightness and savor, with broth to enhance flavor, in all kinds of delicacies. South Min dishes focus on seasoning with spices and condiments, while Western Min cuisine is more salty spicy in a mountainous style. Therefore, three major points lie in Min cuisine, seasoning with wine sauce, modulation of soup and the use of sugar and vinegar.
In Min cuisine, clearness and lightness are commonly required in the modulation of soups while crispness in stir-fried dishes. As the raw material, seafood dominates the table and among various culinary skills, steaming, frying, stewing, quick-frying and stewing are preferred ones.
Owing to the geographical feature of being surrounded by mountains and sea, delicacies, like mushrooms, bamboo shoots, white fugus, lotus seeds and seafood, like stone scales, river eels, soft-shelled turtles are provided in quality abundance, guaranteeing a wealthy resource of raw materials in its cuisine.
The cuisine pays much attention to cutting work, in line with a principle that slices should be as thin as paper, shreds be as hair and flowers carved like lychees. All the cutting work devote to a better taste that raw materials, through the cutting work, presents its flavor and texture completely. In addition, its advocation of the natural beauty of raw materials and opposition towards flashiness and floweriness, contribute to the formation of its genuine flavor.
Fried Conch Tablets and Potato Shreds
The dish, with an adorable peony-looking and a crisp mouthfeel, is a typical interpretation of a dainty credited by cutting work and proper heating.
Round off and clean the conch. Slice evenly. Blanch in hot water about 60 degree and drain. Marinate in cooking wine for 2 minutes.
Peel potatoes and shred. Sink in water to remove the starch. Pave the shreds in a Chinese colander and press by another. Deep-fry in heated oil until shaped like a nest. Pad an egg omelette inside.
Diamond-cut black mushrooms, bamboo shoots and green peppers and blanch.
Prepare a sauce with scallion,soy sauce, sugar, cooking wine, broth, peppercorn and starch.
Stir-fry some mashed garlic and black mushrooms, bamboo shoots, green pepper in heated peanut oil. Pour in the prepared sauce and quick-fry the conch slices.
Dish up in the potato-nest.
The climate is warm as spring in Fujian which is suitable for taking soup which is regarded as the essence of Min cuisine.
Soups are attached with great importance which is related to seafood cooking and traditional dietary customs. Freshness and nourishment are stressed in raw materials and the cooking. The technique of boiling soups is an effective way to maintain the essence of food and its originality, resulting in a large amount of soup dishes and exquisiteness in different texture, such as milkiness and clearness.
Boiled Sea Clam in Chicken Soup
In the representative dish, the soup is not as simple as usual, but a refining modulation of hen, pork ribs and beef. The sea clam, when boiled in the thick broth, turns an unforgettable dainty.
The diligence of Min cuisine lies in selection of materials, proper soaking and heating, precise seasoning and elaborate soup modulation, all of which attributes to the authentic and originality of materials. Sugar and vinegar are wisely used to remove the unpleasant smell of meat and keep a light and refreshing taste.
The seafood production in Fujian is characterized by tenderness with elasticity, which cannot be achieved perfectly by rough cutting work, determining strict disciplines of the chefs’ cutting skills.
Stewed Mashed Chicken with Bamboo Shoots： The bamboo shoots are cut as thin as golden silk threads, blended with mashed chicken and egg paste, into one. The crisp and cracking shreds with tender chicken provide a compound mouthfeel of refreshment and savor.
Stir-fried Crispness： By the amazing perforation of cutting work, the pork tripe is sliced into fine lattice with the bottom connected. Coupled with meticulous stir-frying, the dish is both fresh and crisp, pleasing to the eye.
Braised Tendons with Scallions： The dish tastes thick and refreshing, with the rich fragrance of scallion. The pure soup adds a wonderful rhythm of appetite to the cuisine.
The Wonder of Seasonings
In order to achieve delicious taste, seasonings with peculiar fragrance are good choices to perform with. Min cuisine is seasoned to partially sweet, sour and light. The formation of this feature is also related to the cooking raw materials from the delicacies. The dishes are centered with freshness and mellowness which is unique in Southern cuisines.
Boiled conch slices Chicken in Rice Wine
Various Culinary Techniques
The cooking methods are diverse, not only quick-frying, stewing and boiling, but also good at frying, steaming and simmering. Simmered dishes, with tender and smooth texture and soft rotten meaty incense, are usually rich in a taste which is mellow but not greasy.
Fo Tian Qiang：It means steamed abalone with shark’s fin and fish maw in English, is a classical dish in Min cuisine. The fragrance of meat overflows with a mellow taste, being regarded as a huge joy by foodies from all over the world.
Stir-fried Sea Clam： The meat of sea clam, presenting in a white color within harmonious beauty, tastes refreshingly crisp.
Steamed Afterburner Fish： The fish looks clear and light, with a tender tastes with umami.
Mutton in Rice Wine： The meat is stewed to be mashed with a inviting fragrance of wine nose, tasting sweetly palatable.
Lychee-shaped Meat： The color of the dish resembles lychee, as well as its shape and taste with a mouthfeel of crispness and sour sweet which is delicious and smooth.
Vegetarian Dishes: The diet in South Putuo Temple in Xiamen strict adhere to the traditional regulations of Buddhist Food which is good at cook the raw materials into a colorful variety of exquisite dishes with different, not only providing a pleasant taste, but also an enjoyment of beautiful art.