Tourists tend to buy souvenirs for themselves, or families and friends when traveling in Beijing. Yet many tourists, not familiar with Beijing, are always fooled into purchasing some nominal specialties which are expensive yet of poor quality, a pain for them. Here are the five authentic specialties of Beijing style.
No. 1 Liubiju Pickle
The shop facing Liangshidian Street, a hutong at Qianmenwai, is the famous time-honored Liubiju Pickle and Sauce Shop with a history of over 450 years.
According to historical records, Liubiju was founded in the 9th Jiajing year of during the reign of Emperor Jiajing in the Ming Dynasty (1530). Its predecessor was a liquor brewery. To produce mellow, sweet liquor, six rules were set, namely millet and rice must be well-prepared, yeast preparation must be highly hygienic, ceramic articles must be of top quality, the duration and degree of heating must be appropriate, and water must be clean and pure. That was how Liubiju gained its name. Later the brewery was turned into a pickle and sauce shop, which made Liubiju more famous. The strict rules and good tradition of Liubiju have been passed down from one generation to another.
After the founding of the People’s Republic of China in 1949, Liubiju offered more varieties and quantity of pickles and sauces thanks to the increased choices and production of vegetables in Beijing, as well as the enhanced techniques. Many traditional brand pickles and sauces were made into canned products and sold overseas. At present, Liubiju pickles and sauces are available in large vegetable markets all over the city.
No. 2 Beijing Crunchy Candy
Beijing crunchy candy is among the top three candies in China (Shanghai milk candy, Guangzhou fruit candy, and Beijing crunchy candy), with red shrimp crunchy candy being the best. China has a long history of crunchy candy-making, with that of Beijing being famous since ancient times.
Red shrimp crunchy candy features crisp mouthfeeltaste and fragrant sweet flavor. Red shrimp crunchy candies are produced with quality materials through excellent traditional techniques. Red shrimp crunchy candies are made from quality granulated Liuhua sugar, highly concentrated glucose syrup, and sesame paste through several rounds of boiling, refining, pulling, and wrapping. Red shrimp crunchy candy features thin, crisp skin, clear layers, and good taste. They are mind-refreshing and palatable. Red shrimp crunchy candies are available in all large supermarkets of Beijing.
No. 3 Fuling Jiabing
Fuling jiabing also known Fu Ling Bing or Tuckahoe Pie, is a traditional snack food of Beijing. It had been imperial food during the end of the Qing Dynasty. Later it was introduced to folk society and became a popular snack of Beijing flavor. Before the founding of the People’s Republic of China, Fuling Jiabing can only be found at stalls of Dong’an Market. After the founding of the People’s Republic of China in 1949,Now, the regulation of government had revived many snacks.
Daoxiangchun, a famous food shop of over 60 years old, sells Fuling Jiabing as one major self-marketing product. Fuling Jiabing offered in this shop are made from quality materials through exquisite workmanship. Now Fuling Jiabing sandwiches are produced in many shops, among which these of Daoxiangchun are is the best.
No.4 Beijing Fruit Beijing Preserved Fruit
The recipe of Beijing fruit preserved fruit originates from Chinese imperial cuisine. Chefs, who hoped to serve fresh fruits to emperors all year round, assorted and soaked them in honey in order to offer fruits for emperors at any time. Later, with popularization of the recipe outside the imperial palace, workshops for fruit preserved fruit production emerged in Beijing. Known for pleasant sweetness and sourness, smooth and delicious taste, and thick fruit flavor, Beijing fruit preserves have built up with over one thousand varieties and several hundred specifications including all kinds of products like preserved apricot, preserved pear and preserved begonia, all of which have been labeled as green foods.
No.5 Beijing Cassia Wine
Cassia wine boasts a brewing history as long as over 3,000 years in China. Cassia wine produced by Beijing Dragon Seal Wines Co., Ltd. is a kind of high-end tonic potable spirit without any medicine material. It is brewed with quality aging white alcohol wine as basic liquor and fragrans as spice. With a golden color, it is clear and transparent. Taking a smell of it, you would be surrounded by an agreeable and thick fragrance, a blend of fragrans and wine. With a sip of it, its pleasant sweetness and sourness would permeate your mouth with lingering aftertaste. Furthermore, cassia wine can contribute to blood circulation to warm you up, help digestion to whet your appetite and soothe your tiredness.
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