May 23, 2011

Food - hot stuff

I never thought Chinese food could be so hot.

Sichuan chicken dish © Evelyn Howard 2011

When I was living in Malaysia, Chinese food seemed to be quite mild, as most Chinese food in Malaysia are variations of Cantonese cuisine.

The above photo shows one of the dishes we had when we first arrived in Beijing. This is a Sichuan dish. There is probably as much chilli in there as chicken.

Sichuan prawn dish © Evelyn Howard 2011

In Beijing, there are varieties of cuisine from all over the country. I love Sichuan food, but they are often very hot. In this 2nd photo (above), the prawn dish on the right seemed quite harmless, doesn't it? Actually, there are lots of bits of chilli scattered all over. These dishes are eaten with steamed rice.

Skewered food © Evelyn Howard 2011

Skewers of vegetables, meatballs, tofu, mushrooms…. I have not eaten this. Sure looks hot! I am not sure if this is Sichuan food…

Sichuan capsicum dish © Evelyn Howard 2011

The best capsicum I have ever tasted, but it was extremely hot.

Chicken Gaifan © Evelyn Howard 2011

If you are alone, ordering food from a menu can sometimes be a challenge as most dishes are for 2 or more people.  But some menus offer the lone diner a portion of a dish over rice… So here’s hot spicy chicken over rice…

Pork gaifan © Evelyn Howard 2011

And hot spicy pork strips with vegetables over rice

Hot dumplings

Hot dumplings are yummy but it felt like I was torturing myself. Yet, I could not stop eating…

Hot Sichuan food © Evelyn Howard 2011

And another hot chicken dish… Now, where are the tissues? And where is the cold drink I ordered?

Sichiuan Chicken © Evelyn Howard 2011

Quite a presentation… hot chook.

Sichuan meat © Evelyn Howard 2011

Finally, one last hot dish…

Sichuan peppercorns are widely used in these dishes. It has a very distinctive flavour and sensation (numbing effect) in the mouth… Here’s a link if you are interested to read more about Sichuan food.


Michelle said...

Hi Evelyn.

Reminds me of a dish we got in Chongquing (which is just east of Sichuan) - chicken and what we *thought* was green beans. Not !!!

I'm envious, and hungry every time I see your food posts.

Kala said...

These dishes look so good. I especially love the photo of the dumplings - one of my favorite things to eat!

Sadami said...

Dear Evelyn,
Thank goodness, I saw this post after dinner. Otherwise, I should have cursed at my dishes?!
Cheers, Sadami

Kaori said...

I hope you didn't eat all that at once! Looks really good though! I've had super hot Mahbo Tofu (麻婆豆腐) that had me sweating like a pig! hehe.

Great photos, Evelyn :D

Viola said...

A lot of delicious food here! I used to like hot food earlier.. but now just a wee bit hot.. ;D
Closest I can come China, is Chinese restaurants in my country.. But I have never tasted much hot food there.. But they have good food..

Have a nice day, and thanks a lot for your comments! I presuate it! :)

Evelyn said...

@ Michelle, there is a Chongquing restaurant that we go to often - hot stuff but really good.

Evelyn said...

@Kaori - I love 麻婆豆腐 too - delicious but yeah, sure has a kick to it. :)

@Sadami - I am sure your cooking is great. I love Japanese food - 美味しいです!

Katie said...

All this food looks delish. I love Asian cuisine! (Has it tonite <3)

diane b said...

I must remember not to order Sichuan food, I couldn't manage it so hot but it looks yummy although I'm not so sure about the chicken head and legs sticking out.

Francisca said...

You've made me seriously homesick, Ev! The chili chicken on top could just as well be Hunanese; one of my favorites! These are all delicious dishes! But yeah, there's hot and there's hot hot hot. One time my hubby, who is Cantonese but can do spicy, although he doesn't like it as much as I do, went to a Sichuan restaurant in Shanghai with a local friend and the food they got was so hot neither of them could eat any!

Francisca said...

PS. When eating spicy food, don't drink cold liquid, it just spreads the heat around in your mouth! Eat more white rice. :-D

Cynthia Schelzig said...

omg it is lunchtime here and let me tell you after seeing these shots ,,,well won´t matter what I make cause it won´t taste as good as this all mouth is watering:)

Pavinee said...

I love Chinese food. These look so delicious!

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