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Snacks & Menu

Dining in Beijing, China

In addition to the banquet imperial dishes, Beijing has a wide selection of snacks. There are several snack streets in the city with all sorts of street stalls and vendors selling delicious local delicacies.

 Fried Triple Shreds (Bao Du)
These are quick-fried triple shreds boiled in waters and served with sesame sauce, mushrooms, vinegar and sauced bean curd.

 Rice Balls with Sweet Fillings (Ai Wo Wo)
This is one of the traditional snacks on most market shelves in the Spring Festival. It is a kind of sticky rice dumpling with fillings of walnuts, sesames, melon seeds, greengage and sugar.

 'Rolling Donkey' (Lu Da Gun)
This rice-flour cake with yellow appearance is a traditional Beijing snack. First the steamed glutinous millet or sticky rice dumplings are put into fried soybean flour and then added to the sweetened bean paste. Then the dumplings are rolled out and finally rolled up and cut into cakes. The name of Rolling Donkey describes the way the dumplings rolling in the fried soybean flour resemble a donkey rolling about in dust. Good ones should taste sweet and sticky.

 Bean Milk (Dou Zhi)
Dou Zhi is breakfast milk made of beans and one a favorite of Beijing people. Many foreign tourists find it a little smelly and not to their taste. Local people say it goes well with a kind of fried dough ring and pickles. The milk is full of protein, Vitamin C and coarse-fibred substances, which have the effect of clearing away heat.

 Fried Liver (Chao Gan)
The history of this snack can be traced back to 1862 in the Qing Dynasty (1644 - 1911). It was an improvement on a kind of sweetbread soup. The pig's large intestines are cut into short pieces and stewed with liver, vinegar, soy sauce, mashed garlic, starch and other things. The finished soup should be thick and the intestine and liver pieces should taste tender and tasty. Tianxingju Chaogan Restaurant in a small alleyway 300 meters south of Qianmen in Chongwenmen District is the best place to taste it.

 Wan Dou Huang (Pea-Flour Cake)
Wan Dou Huang was originally a kind of dim sun made of pea flour and later became a favorite in the imperial kitchen. It was said that Dowager Empress Ci Xi liked to it for its soft taste. The smashed pea pastes are added to sugar and sweet-scented osmanthus and cooled. The finished cake is cut into two-inch cubic pieces and served with red sweet dates. It has a pleasing appearance and good taste. The Imperial Court Cuisine Restaurant in Beihai Park offers the best.

 Foreign Cuisines

Beijing people never refuse any dainties from any place. For the travelers who are not used to Chinese food, a great amount of foreign food restaurants can satisfy you with all kinds of food from American, Italy, Russia, Japan, Korean, Indonesia, Thailand and other countries.

Famous western junk food outlets - Mcdonald's, KFC, Pizza Huts, Kenny Rogers', A&W can be found along with other chained restaurants. Up-market western food restaurants provide mainly French, Italian, Russian and some Japanese and Korean food.

 Popular Chinese Drink & Dishes

The following bilingual menu may be of great use when you go to a Chinese restaurant. You need not have to say anything. Just use your fingertips!

(pi jiu) --------------------------------Beer
(ke le) --------------------------------Coca-Cola
(hua cha) ----------------------------Jasmine Tea
(hong cha) --------------------------Black Tea
(lu cha) -------------------------------Green Tea
(ba bao cha) ---------------------'Eight Treasures' Tea

 Cold Dishes
(ban fu zhu) ------------------------Seasoned beancurd sheet rolls
(qiang qin cai) ---------------------Spiced celery
(liang ban tu dou si) ------Seasoned shredded potato topped with parsley
(xiang cai xiao la jiao) ----Parsley with green chillies

 Vegetable Dishes
(qing chao dou miao) ---------Stir-fried pea sprouts
(jian jiao tu dou si) ----------Stir-fried potato shreds with green chillies
(yu xiang qie zi bao) -------Eggplant stewed in yuxiang sauce and served in casserole
(hu pi jian jiao) ------------------Deep-fried chilli peppers
(yang cong jian dan) ----------Onion omelet
(hao you sheng cai) -----------Stir-fried romaine lettuce in oyster sauce
(song ren yu mi) ----------------Stir-fried corn with pine nuts
(suan cai fen si) -----------------Pickled Chinese cabbage with noodles made from green pea
(qing jiao tu dou pian) ------Fried sliced potato with green chillies in soy sauce

 Pork Dishes
(mu xi rou) ----------------------------Stir-fried sliced pork with egg and ’tree ear’
(hui guo rou) --------------------------Twice cooked pork
(gan bian bian dou)--------------Minced pork fried with French beans
(san xian guo ba) ----------------Rice crisps with seafood
(rou mo fen si) --------------------Stir-fried minced pork with noodles made from green pea
(yu xiang rou si) ------------------Hot and sweet slices of pork

 Beef & Mutton
(shui zhu yang rou) --------------Quick-boiled beef slices flavored with pepper oil
(yang cong niu rou si) -------Shredded beef fried with onions in soy sauce
(gan bian niu rou si) ----------Deep-fried shredded beef with pepper
(cong bao yang rou) -------------Quick-fried mutton with scallion
(hao you niu rou) ------------------Sauted beef slices with bamboo shoots in oyster sauce

(gong bao ji ding) -----------------Stir-fried diced chicken with peanuts and served with red chilli sauce
(xi ning jian ruan ji) -----------Soft-fried chicken in lemon sauce

(suan la tang) --------------------------Hot and sour soup
(su mi geng) ----------------------------Corn and egg soup