Hakka food presents delicious delicacies that are sure to please

At a celebration in Longyan, Fujian province, to honor the Year of the Dragon, Hakka cuisine was served. Eight master chef teams from the following provinces competed: Ganzhou, Jiangxi, Meizhou, Guangdong, and Longyan in Fujian; the event was themed “Longyan welcomes the Year of the Loong” (as the dragon is called in Chinese). Ten dishes, representing the rich and varied culinary traditions of the Hakka people, were showcased by each team. A dish of western Fujian Hakka appetizers, including Chinese mugwort leaves and chestnut, was displayed by Longyan chef Huang Chonghui.

 

The chef was quick to point up the cuisine’s historical significance. “Hakka cuisine emphasizes the use of ample oil and salt, which was essential during migration, thus giving Hakka dishes a rich, salty and fragrant characteristic,” Huang explains. Meizhou’s delegate, Chen Zehuan, emphasized the inventiveness and flexibility of the tradition, which combines a wide range of ingredients and cooking methods that have been handed down through the years. Thinking back to the historical struggles the Hakka people had during their migration from Central China to the south, Chen states, “Poultry and meats were usually processed and preserved in salt, making them easier to store and transport.”

 

Salt-baked chicken, one of Chen’s specialties, is renowned for its rich flavor, delicate meat, and appealing golden hue. It is prepared using traditional methods. Chen claims that attending the three-day event strengthened his resolve to showcase Hakka food as a powerful culinary heritage and inspired him to create more standout recipes.

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