Hello! There is always one thing that becomes one of the highlight of oversea trips — food. What’s more exciting than trying out different types of local dishes that you don’t usually have back at home? That’s the fun part about traveling, getting to experience new things, including tons of scrumptious and sometimes weird food.
I decided to do a post about the dishes that I have gotten to try out while traveling in Beijing, China. Trust me, it was not all that fancy or nice, read on to know more…
Dumplings are one of the must-try dishes if you ever come and visit Beijing. Unlike where I come from, the people there don’t eat rice as their main course. They eat dumplings instead. In case you have no idea what a dumpling is, it’s a small piece of dough with meat fillings in it. It comes cooked in soup or is sometimes fried or steamed.
You can get these at very cheap prices. I ordered a set of 8 steamed dumplings in a shopping mall at the Wangfujing area for CNY 20, I think. There was a restaurant beside my hotel which sells them for CNY 1 each! At first, I thought these dumplings wouldn’t satisfy my hunger, but I was wrong, they are as filling as rice or noodles. I loved them and wished I had eaten more dumplings before I left Beijing.
Mushroom and meatballs noodles
This was the first meal I ate after arriving at Beijing, and thank god, it didn’t disappoint me. You could choose if you wanted the noodles to be spicy (depending how spicy you wanted it to be) or not. The noodles were glass noodles (Chinese vermicelli) which tasted great, just hard to chew as it was slippery.
I didn’t really like the taste of it at first as I have never really tasted something similar to this before. It had a weird taste of vinegar (I swear it was so strong I could literally smell it) but I started to accept the taste. It was CNY 13, very worth it as food there comes in huge portions.
To be honest, it wasn’t that bad, in fact I actually went back to the same place on the day I was going to leave Beijing just to eat the noodles again. Nice.
Kung Pao Chicken with Rice
Kung Pao Chicken (the one I tasted) in Beijing tastes different from the ones I have eaten in Malaysia. It basically a stir-fry chicken dish with peanuts, some vegetables and chili peppers. The dish was more watery and less spicy, more like sweet and sour chicken with the slightest taste of spicy-ness. I think it was less than CNY 15.
Peking Roasted Duck
This is another must-try dish in Beijing — their famous roasted duck in a special sauce. Before coming to Beijing, I found that there was a famous roasted duck restaurant called Quanjude (全聚德). After succeeding in finding the restaurant which was located near the Forbidden City, I had no choice but to banish my thoughts of trying their roasted duck as it was too expensive. Plus the fact that I couldn’t possibly finish the whole duck (they only sold whole ducks). It was more than CNY 200 (for one duck), and I wasn’t ready to fork out that much money.
Nevertheless, I was determined to try out the Peking roasted duck for at least once in my lifetime, so I found another restaurant which also serves roasted duck. The portion was much smaller, two plates (one of plates contained of mainly bones) the size of my palms and it costs CNY 78 (half duck). Not very budget-friendly, but I think the duck tasted amazing. It was aromatic and the tender meat was quite juicy.
Spicy & sour noodles
This dish, was a terrible mess. It was awful. I ordered it, thinking maybe it was almost the same as the mushroom meatball noodles I tried, and I was so wrong. Well, maybe I wasn’t used to eating stuff like this, and maybe this was considered tasty for the locals. For me, hell no.
Imagine having a bowl of glass noodles, throw in peanuts, some vegetable strips and some red pepper flakes. Now, fill the bowl with lots of vinegar and oil. Yeah. That’s what it tasted like to me. Absolutely disgusting. And it was CNY 15. Waste of my money.
Ground beef and pickled vegetable stew with noodles
Personally, I’m in a love-hate feeling with this dish because I can’t really stand the smell of beef (there’s just some sort of smell) and I don’t really like pickled vegetables, but the stew itself was actually not bad. Somehow, the combination of the ingredients formed a heavenly broth, and with the noodles together, BAM! Perfect!
See the glass bottle in the picture? It’s some kind of peanut milk drink, I wanted to have some beverage, so I just bought this. It was so sweet I thought my tongue would corrode.
For the piece of flat dough, it is the Chinese-style pancake with mashed boiled eggs and chopped scallions wrapped inside. I noticed a lot of restaurants or stalls selling them. It tasted quite good.
Grilled skewered lamb
I’ve seen these street delicacies sold in stalls and the Wangfujing Snack Street. I bought two of them for CNY 10. The meat pieces were cut in large chunks, which I found disturbing as it was hard to eat. I liked the taste of the marinated meat grilled with charcoal. Mmmn.. I would like to eat one more now. I’m making a guess that it is also a well-known local snack as it is so widely found in many places.
The yoghurt didn’t really tasted any different from the normal yoghurts I get from supermarkets. Well, except that it was warm, so that made it very soothing to eat (or drink?).
That’s all for this food post which may have made you craving for some food now (or may have made you feel the opposite way). Even though not all my attempts of trying out Beijing food turned out good, I enjoyed all of them. After all, that’s what traveling is all about, isn’t it?
P.S. I think I was eating something every minute as the weather in Beijing was so cold, I kept feeling hungry. Bad news, I gained weight after my trip to Beijing (like I always do after traveling).
Andd until next time, bye!