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Chinese Food – Sichuan Cuisine

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Sichuan cuisine is one of the four traditional Chinese cuisines of the Han nationality, one of the eight Chinese cuisines, and a master of Chinese cuisine.


Sichuan three factions division is been finalized on the river to help, to help the river, the river help on the basis of standardized complete expressed as the river to help Sichuan that is western Sichuan Chengdu, Leshan Leshan, Sichuan central; the river to help Sichuan namely to southern Sichuan Zigong centric salt to help food while including Yibin dishes, Luzhou vegetables, and Neijiang dishes, help the river that is the old East Sichuan Sichuan Dazhou vegetables, Chongqing dishes, Wanzhou dish as the representative of food arena. The three together form the three major mainstream local flavors of Sichuan cuisine, representing the highest artistic level of Sichuan cuisine. On September 28, 2017, the Chinese Cuisine Association awarded Meishan City, Sichuan the title of “Hometown of Sichuan Cooking”, and Meishan cuisine became the representative of Sichuan cuisine.


It has a wide range of materials, varied seasonings, diverse dishes, fresh taste, and strong mellowness. It is known for the good use of spicy and spicy seasoning. It is famous for its unique cooking methods and strong local flavors. It combines the characteristics of the south, east, and northwest. He is good at absorbing and innovating. Sichuan provincial capital Chengdu is a UNESCO awarded the ” world gourmet capital ” the honorary title.


At the end of the Ming and the beginning of the Qing, peppers were introduced until the end of the Qing Dynasty. The flavor characteristics gradually became finalized and developed after the founding of New China. Sichuan cuisine is mainly home-cooked dishes, supplemented by high-end dishes. Most of the ingredients are daily flavors, and there is no shortage of seafood. Its characteristics are: “good use of three peppers”, “one dish with one pattern, a hundred dishes with a hundred flavors”; the taste is changeable, including fish fragrance, homemade, spicy, red oil, garlic, ginger juice, tangerine peel, mustard, pure sweet, strange flavor Wait for 24 flavors. On behalf of dishes include fish-flavored pork, kung pao chicken, Shuizhuroupian, Fuqifeipian, Mapo tofu, twice-cooked pork, pickled chicken feet, lights in beef, saliva chicken, spicy shrimp, pepper fried beef, Chongqing hot pot, Chestnut roast chicken, spicy chicken, etc.

Sichuan cuisine


Introduction to Sichuan Cuisine

The reconstruction of the theoretical system of modern Sichuan cuisine under the new normal, including the division of the three schools of Sichuan cuisine, is based on the established conclusions of the Shanghe Gang, Xiaohe Gang, and Xiahe Gang. The standardized and complete expression is: Rongpai Sichuan cuisine in the central areas of Chengdu and Leshan in western Sichuan is characterized by being close to the people and peaceful, rich in seasoning, relatively light in taste, and more traditional dishes; Xiaohebang Sichuan cuisine is the salt group cuisine centered on Zigong in southern Sichuan, and it also includes Yibin cuisine, Luzhou vegetables, and Neijiang cuisine, which is characterized by Wei Hou, flavor, taste the abundance of its distinctive features;  the river that is to help Sichuan Dazhou vegetables, Chongqing dishes, Wanzhou dishes Sichuan representatives. The three together form the three major mainstream local flavors of Sichuan cuisine, representing the highest artistic level of Sichuan cuisine.


Controversy on the division of Sichuan cuisine: There are still some different opinions about the division of Sichuan cuisine. Wang Dayu introduced in the “Study of Sichuan Cuisine” compiled by the National Committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference on Literature and History: “Sichuan cuisine can be roughly divided into Chengdu Gang, Chongqing Gang, Dahe Gang, and Xiaohe Gang. , Self-help, each genre has its special formation background and representative dishes.” Professor Du Li of Sichuan Tourism College believes in the book “Introduction to Chinese Cooking” that modern Sichuan cuisine is mainly composed of eastern Sichuan, western Sichuan, and southern Sichuan. , Four local flavors in northern Sichuan.


Sichuan originated in the Spring and Autumn when Shu, Qin, and Han dynasties emerged, Sichuan Han and Jin Dynasties classical molding to “still taste”, “good spicy (pepper to taste refers to Shu ginger)” of its features. The classical Sichuan cuisine in the Tang and Song dynasties further developed. Classic Sichuan cuisine came out of Sichuan. “Sichuan restaurant” spreads all over the capitals of Kaifeng and Lin’an. It has won the favor of many diners with its “no fixed taste, delicious taste” flavor characteristics. Sichuan cuisine is an independent Cuisine that was formed in the Song Dynasty.


Sichuan people have had the tradition of “savoring taste” since ancient times. In addition to the rich products in Sichuan, birds, animals, poultry and fish provide abundant raw materials for Sichuan cuisine, and the abundant use of Sichuan ginger, Sichuan peppercorns, and other seasonings, as early as the Han Dynasty as Sichuanese ” The characteristic of “good spicy” is well-known at home. This “spicy” refers to the taste of pepper and ginger instead of chili. The taste of Sichuanese today is actually far from that of Li Bai and Su Shi. If there were no peppers imported from South America during the Ming and Qing Dynasties, it would not be Sichuan cuisine in the eyes of Sichuanese. Sichuan cuisine is said to have a history of more than two thousand years. But it is difficult to say how much the Sichuan cuisine we eat now is related to ancient Sichuan cuisine. An iron proof is that before the Ming and Qing dynasties, there were no peppers in Sichuan cuisine.


During the Ming and Qing Dynasties, Sichuan cuisine further developed until the Republic of China. Due to the introduction of peppers during the Ming and Qing Dynasties, modern Sichuan cuisine finally formed the characteristics of “one dish, one style, a hundred dishes with various flavors”, “fresh and mellow, spicy and spicy” and developed. Become the number one Chinese cuisine.


Chairman Mao once said on January 30, 1949: “I believe that one Chinese medicine and one Chinese dish will be China’s two major contributions to the world.” This evaluation was when he had a rest in Hangzhou Liuzhuang Hotel in 1953, Mentioned again.


The provincial capital Chengdu, Sichuan dishes as a master, in 2010 by UNESCO awarded the ” world gourmet capital ” the honorary title, only six cities around the world honored, and Chengdu, Sichuan has always been as old Sichuan Governor and General Yamen The official cuisine. In the CCTV documentary “One City, One Taste”, seven cities across the country were elected on the list, and Meishan City in Sichuan Province was on the list.


Chili was introduced into Sichuan for cultivation and widely used in Sichuan cuisine. It is a watershed between ancient Sichuan cuisine and modern Sichuan cuisine. It is regarded as the beginning of the early appearance of modern Sichuan cuisine. This period was roughly the Kangxi period in the early Qing Dynasty. Kangxi 20 years (AD 1688), Chen bromine child wrote and published the ” reading glasses ” a book recorded in Volume V: “chili, a sea crazy vine, spicy eggplant …… most common name its spicy flavor, many people Adopt, research extremely finely, and replace pepper in winter months.” The fan pepper here is hot pepper, also known as sea pepper and Qin pepper. The Sichuan Douban, known as the soul of Sichuan cuisine, created by the perfect combination of chili and broad beans (that is, red beans) is widely used in Sichuan cuisine and is regarded as a symbol of the formation of modern Sichuan cuisine. Watercress, commonly known as Hu watercress, watercress in a wide variety of Sichuan in order to Pixian most famous. Then the innovative use of pickled peppers, kimchi, and tempeh in Sichuan cuisine, as well as the formation of three major categories of Sichuan cuisine with 24 common flavors, 54 cooking methods, and more than 3000 classic traditional dishes, is the final formation of modern Sichuan cuisine and has become the four Chinese cuisines. The symbol of the top of the cuisine, this time in the middle and late Republic of China.


Pepper is native to Peru, South America, and was domesticated as a cultivated species in Mexico. It was introduced to Europe in the 15th century and was introduced to China from the sea at the end of the 16th century in the late Ming Dynasty. It is also called “fanjiao” because it was imported from western countries, and because it was imported from the sea, it is called “haijiao”, and the pepper from Sichuan was imported from Guanzhong to Shu, so it is also called “Qin Jiao”. Since Sichuan cuisine is known for its good use of peppers and peppers, peppers and peppers, which have been used for more than a thousand years, are a major feature and representative of Sichuan cuisine. Therefore, the Western translation of peppers is literally translated as “Sichuan pepper” (Sichuan pepper). Peper), which shows the influence of Sichuan pepper and Sichuan cuisine in the world.


Pepper was first grown as a flower, and then gradually used as a seasoning. The earliest record of pepper in my country is found in the book “Cao Hua Pu” written by Gao Lian in the Ming Dynasty in 1591 AD. The book records: “Pepper pepper, clusters, white flowers, and bald pinheads. Spicy, red in color, appreciable, seed species.” Some people tasted it at that time but did not mention whether it was used for cooking. Tang Xianzu of the Ming Dynasty listed the “peony pavilion” in the book “The Peony Pavilion” completed in the 26th year of Wanli (AD 1598), which is still mainly used as an ornamental flower. It was not until Xu Qiguang’s “Nongzheng Quanshu” that the edible value of pepper was pointed out: “Pepper pepper, the famous Qin pepper, white flower, with a bald pen head, red and lovely, and very spicy.” To the Kangxi period of the Qing Dynasty, pepper was not only It is used for ornamental purposes and also began to be used as a spicy ingredient. Zhu Yizun officially listed pepper as one of the 36 spices in “Shi Xian Hong Secret”. The agricultural book “Shishitongkao” published in the Qianlong period (1742) included peppers in the vegetable section. Since the Qing Dynasty, a large number of peppers have been planted in South China, Central China, and the northwest of Southwest my country, and many new varieties have been cultivated for cooking. Since then, peppers have been widely used in Sichuan cuisine, which eventually promoted the further development of modern Sichuan cuisine until its final shape.


Development History

Ancient Sichuan Cuisine

Ancient Sichuan cuisine existed from the Ba and Shu kingdoms in the pre-Qin period to before the Opium War in the Qing Dynasty. During this period, Sichuan cuisine experienced a period of gestation, initial formation, and maturity of Sichuan cuisine.


Pre-Qin period

From the unearthed cultural relics of Bashu culture, it can be seen that the development of Sichuan cuisine has a long history. Before the Shang Dynasty, Bashu had been able to make exquisite pottery utensils. Among the late Neolithic pottery unearthed at the Wushan Daxi site, there are dining utensils, kettles, pots, cups, plates, bowls, boxes, beans, GUI, pots, etc. Archaeologists believe that Daxi culture has the same value as Yangshao culture in Central Plains. In the Shang and Zhou dynasties, Bashu not only produced exquisite bronze dining utensils but also had relatively abundant cooking materials and a certain number of dishes, which were combined into a banquet. The budding of Sichuan cuisine can be seen.


There are exquisite catering utensils such as lei, bottles, plates, jars, and so on in the Shang and Zhou period bronzes unearthed at the Sanxingdui site in Guanghan. A variety of ancient life banquet utensils were unearthed from the Warring States Tomb in Xindu, Sichuan, such as beans and dishes intended to hold food and urns and tripods for cooking food. The shapes are quite exquisite and generous, and the level of craftsmanship has reached a very high level. It shows that in more than 1000 BC, the ancestors of Bashu have understood the role of “gourmet beauty equipment” in reconciling dishes. During the Shang and Zhou Dynasties, it was the period of budding and breeding of Sichuan cuisine.


Qin and Han Dynasty

During the Qin and Western Han dynasties, Sichuan’s food culture did not have regional characteristics: during the more than 300 years from Qin’s destruction of Shu to the end of the Western Han Dynasty, due to the economic development of Shu after the first immigration, the prosperity of Chengdu led to the abundance of products and the prosperity of the catering industry. This is what Yang Xiong said in “Fu of the Capital of Shu”: “The five flavors of the husband, the harmony of sweetness, the soup of peony, the mackerel and abalone of Jiangdong, the cattle and sheep of Longxi” and the banquet dishes that introduce the “five lumps of meat and seven dishes” of rare wild animals. From these brief words, we can infer that classical Sichuan cuisine has begun to take shape in the late Western Han Dynasty, and the spirit of the Central Plains culinary culture-“five flavor harmony” has become the keynote of the diet of at least the upper class in Sichuan; and then “Jiangdong mackerel and abalone” “Longxi cattle and sheep” shows that Sichuan cooking ingredients are not simply selected on-site, but are obtained from the lower reaches of the Yangtze River and west of the Qinling Mountains through water and land transportation. However, we should note that the above description implies that at least the upper-level diet has not yet appeared regional characteristics during this period. If there is, it is also the “Yizhou Lu (Evil Deer) inherited by the lower-level people mentioned in the previous section. Committee)” Such unsanitary, uncivilized, and bad habits. Before this, from the “Wenjun Danglu” recorded in ” Historical Records “, it can be inferred that the catering industry in Shu has also appeared. In general, just as Sichuan rarely showed the legacy of the ancient Shu culture after the Qin and Han dynasties, the Sichuan food culture in this period was basically assimilated by the advanced culture of the Qin and Han dynasties and has not yet formed its own regional characteristics.


Wei Jin

The distinction between classical Sichuan-Shu cuisine and Central Plains and Jiangnan cuisine appeared in the late Eastern Han Dynasty and the Wei and Jin Dynasties:


After the establishment of the Eastern Han Dynasty, Sichuan’s economy and culture continued to develop, and its culinary culture began to show its own characteristics. In the second section, the “Chuchu figurines” in the tombs of the Eastern Han Dynasty in Zhongxian County described the mature scene of Sichuan and Shu cooking, and the appearance of dumplings should particularly attract our attention. Dumplings should be understood as a variant of wontons. During the Han Dynasty, wontons were called “Feng Won”, which is a kind of “cake” or soup cake. The “Bing” in Liu Xi’s ”Shi Ming” of the Eastern Han Dynasty already mentioned “steamed cakes, soup cakes, scorpion cakes, marrow cakes, golden cakes, cable cakes” and other cakes, but we do not understand the meaning of soup cakes accurately. We know that wontons or dumplings should be made from wheat flour after removing gluten. The flour processing quality is required to be very high. From this, we can infer that at the latest in the Eastern Han Dynasty, the agricultural processing technology in Sichuan was the same as that in the Central Plains, and it had already developed to the same level. The stage. Mantou, or “Mantou”, as a kind of instant noodles, should be a kind of so-called “steamed cake” in the sentence of “Shi Ming” quoted above. It appeared in the late Eastern Han Dynasty, but why should it be attributed to Shu Han by Gao Cheng? Zhuge Liang’s invention? In addition to the celebrity effect, it may also be because Shudi Mantou was the first to add meat, and the shape is slightly like a human head, which is different from Liu Xishi’s steamed buns. In the Wei and Jin Dynasties, the “Weiwu Four Seasons Food System” written by someone named Cao Cao talked about the cooking of Sichuan and Shu, saying: “Pixian fish, yellow scales and red tail, out of the rice field, can be sauce”; said yellow croaker” Hundreds of kilograms, the bones are soft and edible, and they go out of Jiangyang and Qianwei.” The “steamed catfish” was also mentioned, which shows that there were already steamed catfish dishes in Sichuan and Sichuan. In any case, it shows that the cooking level of Sichuan and Shu areas has improved considerably at the end of the Eastern Han Dynasty and the Three Kingdoms period. “Taste, good spicy aroma”.


During the Three Kingdoms period, Chengdu, as the capital of one of the three countries, ascended to China’s political arena. The second immigration movement contributed to the continued development of Sichuan and Shu’s economy and culture. During this period, the later master Liu Chan made great efforts in civil engineering. , Enhance vocal music”, correspondingly, is reflected in the high-level diet. At this time, Chengdu has become “beautiful and admirable”, “extensive on the outside, facing away from the inside, even bigger than houses, thousands of houses.” A prosperous national metropolis. In the Western Jin Dynasty, Zuo Si wrote “Fu of the Capital of Shu” based on documents and inquiries from people in Shuzhong in Luoyang. He praised the rich products in Shuzhong, the so-called “Konjak cornel, Guachou taro area, sugarcane ginger, Yang yang yin compress.” That’s why there are the “Dishes and Four Chens” at the Chengdu Banquet. The poet Zhang Zai of the Western Jin Dynasty also talked about the abundance of food in the capital of Shu in his poem “Chengdu Baitulou”: “Ding food is available at any time. The harmony is wonderful and special.” It is worth noting that “the taste is good, the spicy flavor is good”. The cooking style is in conflict with the spirit of “Five Flavours”. From this, we conclude that the classical Sichuan cuisine in the Wei and Jin dynasties showed different characteristics from the Western Han dynasty. Therefore, we believe that the distinction between classical Sichuan cuisine and other cuisines in the country should be At the end of the Eastern Han Dynasty and the Wei and Jin Dynasties, not the Qin and Han Dynasties.

Saliva chicken

Sui, Tang, and Five Dynasties

The prosperity of Sichuan and Sichuan food culture during the Sui, Tang, and Five Dynasties:


The war in the Sichuan-Shu region at the end of the Western Jin Dynasty led to the eastward migration of a large number of people in the Sichuan-Shu region, which destroyed the economy and culture to a certain extent. In the Sui and Tang dynasties, the establishment of the unified empire restored production and achieved unprecedented economic development. The economic recovery and cultural enrichment under the prosperity of life began after the Sui Dynasty occupied the Sichuan and Shu areas. In the Sui Dynasty, the Yue King Yang Xiu, who moved to Chengdu, built a large-scale construction project in Chengdu and expanded into the capital city wall. This shows that the population of the Shu area increased when the Sui Dynasty unified China. Chengdu’s urban area is no longer sufficient for housing. Yang Xiu’s “increasing luxury” has played an exemplary role in Chengdu’s food and leisure culture. Since the Anshi Rebellion, Shu became the backyard of the Tang Dynasty. Chengdu was briefly renamed “Nanjing”. Afterward, Chengdu was expanded twice through Wei Gao and Gao Pian in the Middle Tang and Late Tang and became a considerable scale. Big city. During the turmoil in the middle and late Tang Dynasty, Sichuan has always been a place of refuge for aristocratic families and famous literati, which created conditions for cultural exchanges, including the improvement of dietary standards.


At this time, the level of Sichuan and Shu’s diet reached a new height, which is reflected in Tang poetry. For example, when Du Fu was in Kuifu, Sichuan, he wrote the poem “Lengtao Sophora Leaves”: “Green and green high Sophora leaves, picking the leaves for Chinese cooking. The new noodles come near the market, and the juice is full. It is over-ripe in the Ding Ding, and there is no sorrow for extra meals. The green fresh noodles are all illuminated, and the fragrant rice is also a blu.” “Length” is a kind of cold noodles, as early as the Northern and Southern Dynasties The embryonic form has appeared in the period, and it became the seasonal food for court banquets in the prime of the Tang Dynasty. The fact that Du Fu could eat cold dishes in Kuifu showed that the delicacies in the feast of the capital had spread to the people of Sichuan. Du Fu once again admired the fish cooking technique of Mianzhou, Sichuan, which “swung the frosting knife left and right, and the golden plate of bream was high in the snow”. The prosperous Sichuan and Sichuan economies and the exchange of commodities have given full support to the regional food culture. In ” Chengdu Qu “, Zhang Ji has ” there are many restaurants by the bridge in Chengdu, where the tourists love to stay” and Yongtao “from Chengdu” Shochu is cooked, and it is more like Changan without thinking about the body.” Li Shangyin’s sentence “Wine Chengdu is worthy of old age, Zhuo Wenjun when the furnace is still” all described the abundance of Sichuan cuisine at that time.


Especially in the Five Dynasties period after the third immigration, the economic and cultural climax of Liangshu and Shushu reached another climax. This is because the number of highly educated family members who migrated to Sichuan exceeded the previous two times, making Sichuan and Sichuan one of the two areas where the family members of the Central Plains took refuge at that time.


“Qing Yi Lu” contains: “Meng Shu still eats food, palms the “Code of Code” 100 volumes, with gift of Fei Yang. Method: use red yeast rice to cook meat, tightly roll Shizhen, deep into the wine bones, cut like paper Bo Naijin.” From ” Qi Min Yao Shu “, we see that the only cooking method that directly uses wine to treat meat is steamed (four points of water) piglets, and the production method of scarlet sheep seems to carry forward this method, modern” ” Dongpo Meat ” also inherited this method, using wine to treat pork. From Mrs. Huarui’s palace poems, we know that the way of banqueting was rich and colorful, and there was a “boat banquet”. With its volume of up to 100 volumes, “Code of Code” should be the most extensive recipe book from the Sui and Tang Dynasties to the Five Dynasties. Although it only reflects the cooking skills of the royal chefs, it can reveal the colorfulness of Bashu’s cooking culture in the Five Dynasties. Nowadays, we have no way of knowing the specific content of the lost Codex of Meng Shu. We can only glean the novelty of the banquets and the ingenuity and uniqueness of the banquet styles of the high-level people in Sichuan at that time from the palace poems of Mrs. Huarui.


Song Dynasty

During the Song Dynasty, classical Sichuan cuisine became the independent cuisine of the country:


Sichuan continued to maintain its economic and cultural prosperity during the Song Dynasty. In the Northern Song Dynasty, the banquet in Chengdu was very popular, and during the Northern Song Dynasty Renzong Song Qi knew Chengdu, and the banquet activities were carried out in a colorful manner. Song Qi wrote “A Brief History of Yabu Fangwu ”, the first to introduce Sichuan’s unique local products and some cooking skills to areas outside Sichuan. Later, Su Shi was the first to practice and creatively carry forward Sichuan cuisine to the Central Plains, Jiangnan and Lingnan regions. Regarding Su Shi’s cooking practices, we can find out in many books of his poems, poems, and Song people’s notes.


An amateur cooking enthusiast, Lu You from Zhejiang has been an official in Sichuan for a long time and has a keen interest in Sichuan cuisine. Tang An’s barley, Xinjin’s leeks, Pengshan’s roasted turtle, Chengdu’s steamed chicken, and Xindu’s vegetables all left an unforgettable impression on him. In his later years, he chanted the emotional verse of “Returning Wu’s taste and reoccurrence” in “Vegetable Opera” (Note 44). In the poem ” Fan Ba ​​Xi Zuo “, he said: “The East Gate buys bones, Dip orange scallions in the sauce. Steamed chicken is the most famous, and it’s so beautiful.” “彘” means “pig” and “彘骨” means pork chop. The ribs are cooked or dipped in a sour sauce mixed with orange scallions and other spices. In addition, the poems praised Sichuan’s leeks, rice dumplings, turtle soup, and other foods. Lu You’s “Guardian of Jiannan Poems” talks about Sichuan food and there are more than 50 poems. His work allows us to observe the splendor of the folk food in Sichuan from another angle.


The major achievement of Sichuan cuisine in the two Songs is that its cooking began to be sent abroad so that overseas Sichuanese and ordinary people who are not Sichuanese can eat local flavors in special restaurants. This is Sichuan cuisine. The beginning of becoming an independent cooking system for the first time. This is the so-called “Sichuan rice” of the Northern Song Dynasty. These Sichuan restaurants mainly distribute “inserted meat noodles, Dalian noodles, small and small meat dishes, fried meat, mixed fried events, raw and cooked rice.” tea”. From the contents of the above two books, it can be found that Sichuan Cuisine Dechuan mainly deals in popular diets, especially noodles, and the main ingredient in noodles is noodles, along with some fast food meats. Today’s “noodles” or “we noodles” in Shanghai and Hangzhou noodles are probably the remains of Sichuan rice noodles because we can’t find the second record in ” Tokyo Menghualu ” (written in the early Southern Song Dynasty) The place where Nianmian is located, according to the “Ducheng Jisheng. Food Store “, the Nanshidian and Chuanfan Fencha after Nandu have actually become the synonym for the noodle shop. Therefore, the Nianmian of Kaifengchuan Hotel in the Northern Song Dynasty was in Nandu 150 Ten years later, it may become fixed Jiangnan noodles. And we know that modern noodles are very different from modern Sichuan noodles. The specific seasoning characteristics of this cooking, and the thick flavor and spicy flavor are not found. From the description of “Menglianglu”, we know that the reason for the emergence of Sichuan rice was that in the Northern Song Dynasty, in order to take care of the tastes of the scholar-bureaucrats of Shu who lived in Bianjing, “it is said that it is inconvenient to eat in the north.” Nandu 100 Fifty years later, these Sichuan restaurants opened with Nandu to Lin’an have “no distinction between north and south”, indicating that these Sichuan-style pasta dishes were quite different from Central Plains cooking.


In other words, only in the Northern Song Dynasty did Sichuan cuisine alone become an influential cuisine in the country. We can conclude that classical Sichuan cuisine began in the late Eastern Han Dynasty and the turn of the Wei and Jin Dynasties, and the finalization reached its peak at the same time in the Northern Song Dynasty. The finalization process took almost a thousand years.


Yuan, Ming, and Qing

It began to recover and develop further in the middle of the Qing Dynasty. During the Yuan Dynasty, Sichuan experienced a long period of war and chaos, and its economy and culture were severely devastated. It did not recover until the Ming Dynasty. At the end of the Ming Dynasty and the beginning of the Qing Dynasty, it was hit by unprecedented catastrophes, the population dropped sharply, and the economy was depressed.


“Records of the Ancestors of the Qing Dynasty” volume six words: “Sichuan Province was initially set, the scholars are scarce.” In order to revive the economy of Sichuan, the rulers of the Qing Dynasty adopted a series of measures including emigration to Sichuan. The most influential one was “Huguang fill Sichuan”. The immigrants from Huguang and other southeastern and northwest regions in more than 10 provinces brought advanced production technology and new crop varieties, which enabled the rapid recovery of Sichuan’s economy and enriched Sichuan’s cooking ingredients and seasonings. Sweet potatoes, peppers, tomatoes, potatoes, and corn are new varieties brought in by immigrants. Among them, the introduction of pepper fits with the Sichuanese people’s long-established tradition of “good spicy fragrance” due to climate, geographical conditions, and taste habits, making peppers widely used in the production of Sichuan cuisine, and promoting the formation of unique flavor characteristics of Sichuan cuisine. . It can be said that the introduction and widespread use of pepper has played an important role in the development of Sichuan cuisine. At the same time, the immigrants and the natives of Sichuan produced and lived together, which promoted the integration of various aspects including the preparation of dishes and dietary customs, which enabled the Sichuan people to promote the custom of eating and drinking, and the demand for food continued to change and grow. Frequent personnel turnover has also brought in Sichuan dishes from other provinces and chefs with superb skills.


During the Qianlong period of the Qing Dynasty, Li Huanan, a native of Luojiang in Sichuan Province who traveled to Zhejiang Province for many years, paid attention to collecting the cooking experience of home cooks and housewives in his spare time. Later, his son Li Tiaoyuan sorted out the cooking experience he collected, and engraved it into the book “Xing Yuan Lu”. “Xing Yuan Lu” is an important food book in the Qing Dynasty. It is different from the outline of similar books in the Qing Dynasty at the same time. It records the selection of cooking ingredients and cooking procedures in detail, which improves the skills of home cooks and housewives. Great help.


At this time, Sichuan’s economy was still on the eve of its take-off. The cooking skills were simple and rough. It was influenced by the lower-level food style brought into Sichuan by immigrants from Huguang, Jiangxi, and Shaanxi. It was actually a mixture of local flavors. “Eight bowls of meat” and “nine bowls” are representative. The so-called eight bowls of meat and nine bowls refer to: hodgepodge, braised pork, ginger chicken, braised crispy pork, roasted bamboo shoots, steamed pork with rice, braised salted white, sandwiched with sandy pork, and steamed elbow. Among these nine dishes, what we see is mainly the style influenced by Shandong cuisine, while the characteristics of classical Sichuan cuisine are only maintained in ginger chicken and sandwiched meat. The former makes full use of the spicy flavor of Sichuan ginger. The latter accentuates the sweetness, and the hemp flavor in classical Sichuan cuisine is at least not prominent. This is the reason why historian Meng Wentong believes that the early modern Sichuan cuisine was greatly influenced by Shandong cuisine. Sichuan native writer Li Jieren provided readers with several lists of sacrifices in his ancestors he kept in “Said Funeral”. A food purchase order from the 21st year of Daoguang (1829) listed the sacrifices and banquets in the funeral. Of all the food ingredients and condiments purchased by Laibinli, none of them are chili or chili products. Another table in the first year of Tongzhi (1862) listed the dishes in detail, and there was no spicy dish. The one listed in the front was “Jingpin”-Da Zaban. This “Jingpin” is exactly Beijing dishes developed under the influence of Lu cuisine, but in fact, they are just a simplified version of the Man-Han Banquet among the people.


“Xing Yuan Lu” systematically collects 38 cooking methods from Jiangsu and Zhejiang home cooks and Zhongxian dishes, such as stir-fry, simmer, pop, stir, simmer, simmer, deep-fry, boil, blanch, grits, fry, Mongolia, paste, Stuffed, rolled, steamed, roasted, braised, stewed, stalled, simmered, braised, nao, roasted, baked, sticky, boiled, drunk, drunk, washed, etc., and cold dishes are mixed, marinated, smoked, pickled, waxed, Frozen, sauce, etc. Because these various cooking methods are closely related to middle and lower cooking methods, they obviously played a great role in promoting the emergence of modern Sichuan cuisine. “Xing Yuan Lu” makes modern Sichuan cuisine in the middle and lower levels influenced by Jiangsu and Zhejiang cuisines.


Modern Sichuan Cuisine

Boiled fish

Modern Sichuan cuisine, the time period is from the Qing Daoguang 20th year (1840) Opium War to 1949. During this period, Sichuan cuisine continued to merge, and Sichuan cuisine finally formed in the late Qing Dynasty and became one of the four major local cuisines in China, and it developed steadily during the Republic of China.


After the Opium War, Western culture gradually entered China along with strong ships and guns. Sichuan is located in the western inland and has not been directly invaded by the war. The social economy and people’s lives are relatively stable, which has enabled the continuous development of Sichuan cuisine. There have been a large number of specialty dishes and famous restaurants, banquets have continued to flourish, and the food market has become increasingly developed.  There was a general prosperity scene, which once attracted the attention of the German geographer Lichhofen who was visiting China. Richthofen wrote in his correspondence collection: “Under normal circumstances, Sichuan appears everywhere. There are satisfaction and happiness for the abundance of living materials, which is not common in other provinces of China.” During this period, due to the war in the southeast and the collapse of Xinjiang agriculture, Sichuan replaced the two lakes for the first time and became the largest food province of the Qing government. Therefore, the Qing government began to attach importance to Sichuan and sent influential officials to Sichuan, such as Ding Baozhen, Zhang Zhidong, Qin Chunxuan, Xiliang and others started the Westernization Movement, the New Deal, and the school in Sichuan. During this period, the academic and cultural activities in Sichuan appeared. Since the end of the Southern Song Dynasty, it has been silent for 700 years. After this leap, both the economy and the culture have begun to emerge in the country. It was the promotion of officials from the north and Jiangsu and Zhejiang who came to Sichuan in the late Qing Dynasty and the opening of the south in Chengdu and Chongqing that strengthened the evolution of modern upper-class Sichuan cuisine.


In the first year of Emperor Xuantong of the Qing Dynasty (1909), Fu Chongju not only detailed the characteristics of Chengdu’s Baoxi Restaurant, South Hall, stir-fry restaurant, restaurants, food shops, etc., and many famous people in the book towel “Chengdu Overview”. It also records the 1,328 flavor dishes and the preparation methods of some of the dishes from various food shops in Chengdu and the common people’s homework at that time. The “Feast of Chengdu” in the book contains 21 famous banquet venues inside and outside Chengdu at that time.


At the end of the Qing Dynasty, Xu Ke said in “Qing Barnyard Banknotes·Diet”: “The dishes with special characteristics are Jingshi, Shandong, Sichuan, Guangdong, Fujian, Jiangning, Suzhou, Zhenjiang, Yangzhou, and Huaian.”


During the Republic of China, especially during the War of Resistance Against Japan, Sichuan became the rear of the War of Resistance against Japan, and Chongqing became the accompanying capital of the Nationalist Government. A large number of foreign officials, wealthy businessmen, and people from all walks of life moved to Chongqing, Chengdu, and other places in Sichuan. Chefs of almost all major cuisines across the country, Restaurant specialties and their cooking methods, and even Western food have also entered Sichuan. According to statistics from the membership list of the Chinese and Western Restaurant Association in Chongqing in 1943, there were 260 Chinese and Western restaurants in Chongqing. There are also many famous restaurants in Chengdu that operate foreign and even Western food. During this period, the gathering of famous chefs and famous restaurants in Sichuan created conditions for the fusion of Sichuan cuisine and other cuisines. Not only did many famous Sichuan cuisine restaurants and famous chefs emerge, such as the Blu-ray Jian of Rongyuan Garden and Luo Guorong of Yishi. As the master of modern Sichuan cuisine, industry gangs with the relatively fixed division of labor emerged, such as Fanshi Gang, Yan Steam Gang, Noodle Gang, and Sweet Food Gang. Moreover, many Sichuan cuisine producers have created a large number of famous dishes, creating a flourishing situation of modern Sichuan cuisine. There are three main features.


One is the outstanding characteristics of cooking. First of all, use a wide range of materials and learn from others. Modern Sichuan cuisine not only fully discovers and uses a large number of high-quality cooking ingredients produced locally but also introduces and adopts a large number of cooking ingredients from other places and foreign countries. Second, the seasoning is exquisite and spicy. The introduction and wide application of pepper are one of the important conditions for promoting the development of Sichuan cuisine and forming unique dishes. Chili makes Sichuan cuisine. During this period, rich and unique brewed products such as Pixian Douban, Baoning Vinegar, Nanchong Winter Vegetables, Yibin Sprouts, Yongchuan Douchi, etc. were added, which made Sichuan cuisine have the characteristics of exquisite and changeable seasoning and good use of spicy. Again, the cooking methods are diverse and unique. According to the “General Survey of Chengdu”, there are three types of cooking methods commonly used in Sichuan cuisine in the Qing Dynasty, more than 20 kinds, and many methods are derived from each specific cooking method. Among them, the stir-frying method is divided into small stir-frying, and the roasting method is subdivided into dry roasting and home cooking. These are the most distinctive and best cooking methods of Sichuan cuisine.


Second, the flavor system is complete and diverse. During this period, in most parts of Sichuan, the development of various types of diet was relatively balanced. There were a large number of Sichuan dishes and a complete variety, which made Sichuan cuisine formed a complete structure and diverse style flavor system. From the geographical distribution, Sichuan cuisine can be divided into Upper River Gang, Lower River Gang, Big River Gang, Xiaohe Gang, and Self-Inner Gang. Among them, the Shanghebang refers to the Sichuan cuisine in Chengdu and Leshan along the Minjiang River; the lower river refers to the Sichuan cuisine in Chongqing, Dazhou, and Wanzhou in the lower reaches of the Sichuan River; the Dahebang refers to the Sichuan cuisine in Luzhou and Yibin on the upper reaches of the Yangtze River; the Xiaohebang refers to the Jialing River and Nanchong and Mianyang in northern Sichuan. Sichuan cuisine in the area; Zi Neibang refers to Sichuan cuisine in Zigong and Neijiang. From the perspective of consumers and attributes, the Sichuan cuisine flavor system at that time consisted of five categories: banquet dishes, three steamed nine button dishes, popular light meals, home cooking, and flavor snacks. All types have different characteristics and varieties. “Chengdu General Guide” records more than 300 kinds of banquet dishes, hundreds of home-cooked dishes, and hundreds of kinds of pasta snacks, such as three steamed nine-button vegetables such as sweet-seared white, steamed pork slices with lotus leaves and fresh meat, as well as fried pork with leeks and taro. Many popular dishes such as roast pork.


Third, the food and beverage market has become increasingly developed. It has mainly formed a multi-level, all-around, and relatively complete market structure that adapts to various consumption levels, tastes, hobbies, and habits. There are a wide variety of comprehensive food and beverage outlets with complete grades, a variety of specialized food and beverage outlets, and free-flowing food and beverage stalls and vendors. It is divided into two categories in terms of operating methods and operating levels: The first category is catering establishments that only cater for banquets, mainly including banquet halls, usually large in size and luxuriously furnished, such as Zhengxing Garden. The second category is catering shops that both run banquets and snacks. There are high, middle, and low grades. Among them, the South Hall is a representative of mid-to-high-end restaurants. At first, it mainly dealt with southern cuisine, but it was quickly absorbed by Sichuan cuisine and loved by Sichuan people. Popular cooking restaurants and restaurants are representative of low-end restaurants.

Hot Pot


Contemporary Sichuan Cuisine

Contemporary Sichuan cuisine is from the establishment of the People’s Republic of China in 1949 to the beginning of the 20th century. During this period, Sichuan cuisine embarked on a leap-forward development path of prosperity and innovation after experiencing tortuous development.


At the beginning of the founding of the People’s Republic of China, a hundred wastes were waiting to be revived. While restoring the national economy, the people’s governments at all levels in Sichuan adopted measures to encourage business operations, mutual assistance and cooperation, and public-private partnerships to develop the catering industry. After 1956, a catering operation system based on state-owned, public-private partnership, and cooperation was formed. Some famous Sichuan restaurants in various cities and prefectures have been restored and a number of large restaurants have been newly established to meet the needs of consumers.


The Sichuan “Man and Han Quan Xi” compiled by Blu-ray Review, Kong Daosheng, and Zhang Songyun, compiled in 1959, contains 65 kinds of Man Han Quan Xi in Chengdu. In 1960, “Chinese Famous Cookbook (Seventh Series)” published by China Light Industry Press was a Sichuan cuisine album.


In the 20 years from 1958 to 1978, many old and well-known restaurants in Sichuan were smashed and forced to change their names and shut down. Famous teachers and famous dishes were denied and overthrown. The catering industry only retained state-owned and collective restaurants. Difficulties in ticket supply and meals. According to statistics, in 1978, there were only 28,000 outlets in the catering service industry in Sichuan, which was 75% less than in 1957. With fewer outlets and monotonous varieties, the development of Sichuan cuisine was seriously affected.


After the Third Plenary Session of the Eleventh Central Committee of the Communist Party of China in 1978, Sichuan cuisine ushered in opportunities for reform, development, and innovation. In the 1980s, the country classified commerce and catering services as the “tertiary industry” for the development of the national economy. The provincial party committee and the provincial government attached great importance to it, strengthened leadership, formulated and implemented the development of “going out and promoting Sichuan cuisine to the world” Strategy, Sichuan cuisine ushered in a period of rapid development.


Cuisine Features

Sichuan cuisine is quite rich in flavor and is known as a hundred dishes and a hundred flavors. Among them, the most famous are fish, spicy, spicy, tangerine peel, pepper, peculiar, hot, and sour flavors. It is very difficult to prepare these complex flavors, but if you master their recipes and preparation methods, you can basically learn them. The following are introduced separately (according to its weight ratio as the unit).


Taste characteristics

Features of Sichuan cuisine: Fresh and mellow, spicy and spicy, one dish with one pattern, and a hundred dishes.


Sichuan cuisine has six types: hemp, spicy, sweet, salty, sour, and bitter. On the basis of the six basic flavor types, it can be adjusted to a variety of complex flavor types. In the cooking process of Sichuan cuisine, if you can use the primary and secondary flavors, intensity, amount, blending changes, plus the selection of ingredients, cutting, and cooking Properly, you can get a variety of delicious dishes with special flavors with good color, fragrance, and shape.


Sichuan cuisine is characterized by its hemp, spicy, fragrant, fresh, oily, and thick flavor, and uses “three peppers” (capsicum, pepper, pepper) and fresh ginger. Seasoning methods include dry roast, fish flavor, strange taste, pepper, red oil, ginger juice, sweet and sour, lychee, garlic mash, etc., forming the special flavor of Sichuan cuisine, enjoying the “one dish, one style, a hundred dishes and a hundred flavors” Reputation.


There are more than 20 kinds of compound flavors of Sichuan cuisine, such as salty and umami, homemade, spicy, paste-spicy, fish-scented, ginger, weird, pepper-spicy, sour and spicy Flavor, red oil, garlic, sesame sauce, sauce flavor, smoke flavor, lychee flavor, five flavors, glutinous rice flavor, sweet and sour flavor, sweet flavor, tangerine peel flavor, Mustard flavor, salty and sweet flavor, salt and pepper flavor, spicy lychee flavor, tomato juice flavor, etc.


Dishes characteristics

It is mainly composed of four parts: high-end banquet dishes, ordinary banquet dishes, popular casual dishes, and home-style dishes. The four types of dishes not only have their own styles and characteristics but also infiltrate and cooperate with each other to form a complete system, which has a wide range of adaptability to all regions and classes and even to foreign countries.


Its ten classic dishes are Sichuan-style hot pot, boiled fish, twice-cooked pork, mapo tofu, fish-flavored pork shreds, boiled pork slices, spicy chicken, pickled cabbage fish, kung pao chicken, and sweet duck.


Classic dishes

Sichuan cuisine is the cuisine of the Sichuan region. It is one of the four major cuisines of the Han nationality. It is also the most distinctive cuisine, the largest folk cuisine, and it is also called “people’s cuisine”.


Originated in Sichuan, it is characterized as spicy, spicy, fresh, and fragrant. Choose home-cooked ingredients for Sichuan cuisine, and use Shanzhen and Jiangxian for banquets. Make good use of cooking methods such as small stir-frying, dry-stirring, dry-searing, soaking, and braising. It is famous for its “flavor”, with more flavor types and full of variation, with fish fragrance, red oil, strange flavor, and spicy flavor more prominent. The style of Sichuan cuisine is simple and fresh, with a strong rustic flavor. Famous dishes include representatives of Dongpo pork, cold pot fish, stone tofu, sweet skin duck, Luya son, fish-flavored pork, twice-cooked pork, bean curd, spiced chicken, pickled fish, boiled fish, Xuewang, couples Lung slices, Chongqing hot pot, boiled cabbage, bridge ribs, etc.


Production Method

There are complex flavors such as dry roast, fish fragrance, strange flavor, pepper, red oil, ginger juice, sweet and sour, lychee, tempeh, kimchi, garlic mash, etc., forming the special flavor of Sichuan cuisine, enjoying “one dish, one style, and a hundred dishes. “The reputation.

Chicken feet


cooking method

Good at frying, slipping, simmering, popping, stir-frying, deep-frying, boiling, simmering, etc. Especially small fried, small fried, dry stir, and dry roast have their own unique features. From the high-end banquet “three steamed nine buttons” to popular meals, folk snacks, home-style flavors, etc., the dishes are varied, fancy novels, and exquisite workmanship. Sichuan cuisine pays attention to the rich variety and delicious flavor of Sichuan cuisine, so it is loved and respected by people, which is inseparable from its emphasis on cooking technology, fine production technology, and strict operational requirements. Sichuan cuisine has four characteristics: one is the careful selection of ingredients, the second is the fine craftsmanship of the knife, the third is a reasonable match, and the fourth is the careful cooking. It is unique in terms of “speculation”. Many of its dishes use the “small stir-fry” method, which is characterized by a short time, fast heat, less juice, fresh and tender taste, and meets the requirements of nutrition and hygiene. The cooking of dishes seems simple, but actually contains a high degree of science, technology, and artistry, showing the infinite wisdom and creativity of the working people.


Cultural heritage

The Sichuan Cuisine Museum is the only live theme museum in the world with cuisine culture as its display content. Located in the ancient town of Pidu District (formerly Pi County ), Chengdu, it covers an area of ​​about 40 acres, has an investment of nearly 100 million yuan, and has thousands of collections. It is the world’s only theme museum with cuisine culture as its display content. The Sichuan Cuisine Museum is divided into a collection hall, an interactive demonstration hall, a tea tasting leisure hall, a kitchen king temple, a Sichuan cuisine raw material processing tool display area, etc.



The collection hall displays historical Sichuan cuisine culture with cultural relics, classics, and pictures. Visitors can understand the origin, evolution, development, and formation of Sichuan cuisine culture. Here you can see the different utensils used by Sichuan cuisine in different periods, understand the productivity and people’s living habits at that time, as well as the aesthetic needs of the time. The Collection of Sichuan Museum displays more than 3,000 Sichuan food utensils from the Warring States Period to modern times. These collections can be divided into cooking utensils, food vessels, wine utensils, dining utensils, and tea sets in terms of their functions. They can be divided into bronze, Tooth bone, pottery, porcelain, iron, wood, bamboo, etc. In addition, the collection also includes text introductions, books, and artwork related to Sichuan cuisine.


Visitors can learn about many varieties of Sichuan cuisine raw materials and pollution-free green products such as vegetables and poultry. The “spirit of Sichuan cuisine” Pixian Douban in the museum is exclusively hand-brewed using special methods of the Qing Dynasty. Visitors will experience the traditional Pixian Douban craftsmanship with a history of more than 300 years.


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