Food

How do the ancient Chinese drink tea? (iStock)

How to drink tea like an ancient Chinese

Smoked bean tea, ghee tea or jade porcelain ground tea, anyone? Cheng Pei-kai turns tea-drinking conventions on their head as he shows that in history, tea appreciation was not just the domain of the sophisticated or the elegant. Common folk throughout the dynasties found innovative ways to have a cuppa, often with more than a few surprises tossed in.
Salmon has been taken off the shelves at a supermarket in Fengtai District, Beijing, 13 June 2020. (Zhang Yu/CNS)

Beijing's wholesale market cluster sparks fear of a repeat of Wuhan's ordeal

After largely bringing the coronavirus under control, and keeping Beijing out of the fray, China is facing the possibility of a fresh outbreak, this time focused on a cluster involving the Xinfadi wholesale market in Beijing. That the coronavirus was found on a chopping board for cutting imported salmon has sparked much debate about transmission via salmon, and the prospect of a second wave of Covid-19. Zaobao correspondent Yang Danxu weighs up how Beijing will tackle the problem.
Taiwan's carabet cuisine represents Taiwan's nostalgic flavours and can be regarded as an intangible cultural heritage. (iStock)

Taiwan’s nostalgic flavours, the glitterati and the kamikaze

As a child, Cheng Pei-kai believed that cabaret cuisine was forbidden food, due to the unsavoury reputations of the cabarets and clubs that served it. In the present, tasting the last vestiges of cabaret cuisine in Taiwan only reminds him to treasure them as part of an intangible cultural heritage. In a time long past, high society and average Joes alike partied with abandon and in some cases, had their last hurrah.
Foodom restaurant is a new concept restaurant that runs with 46 robots.

Guangzhou robot restaurant: Robot chefs did their part during the epidemic

The use of robot chefs in restaurants has been on the rise in recent years. Zaobao journalist Zeng Shi takes a closer look at how Foodom, a robot restaurant in Guangzhou is bringing us one step closer to the future. But that is not all — the robot chefs also volunteered their service in Hubei during the Covid-19 lockdown.
Traditional agricultural markets in China, like the Longdong Market pictured in the photo, are coming under the spotlight amid efforts to stamp out illegal wildlife trading.

The end of wet markets in Guangzhou?

The first few cases of Covid-19 were believed to have been linked to the Huanan Seafood Wholesale Market in Wuhan, where some live wild animals were available for sale. As the virus comes under control in China, traditional agricultural markets in China are coming under the spotlight amid efforts to stamp out illegal wildlife trading. While these markets in the main never had exotic wildlife for sale, the overhaul taking place is threatening the old way of life for many shopkeepers and market-goers. Zeng Shi takes a look at a microcosm of that phenomenon in Guangzhou.
In this photo taken on 3 April, a poster encouraging people to use serving chopsticks and sit apart is seen as two diners wait for their food to be served in a restaurant in Saybag District, Ürümqi, Xinjiang, China. (CNS)

No more sharing of communal dishes: A revolution of Chinese dining habits?

From serving meals in individual portions, to using serving spoons and advocating BYO (bring your own) — not booze but cutlery — experts in Beijing are setting new dining conventions that will upend the convivial culture of Chinese dining as we know it.
This photo taken on 11 March 2020 shows the exterior of Lin Heung Tea House when night has fallen. (HKCNA/CNS)

[Photo story] The Hong Kong eateries we will miss

The F&B industry has been one of the hardest hit as the world goes through these extraordinary times. ThinkChina winds through the streets of Hong Kong for a look at the eateries and restaurants that have (temporarily) lost their battles with the months of political unrest and the raging Covid-19 pandemic.
In this file photo, a consumer is choosing flour at a supermarket in Taiyuan city, Shanxi province, China. Chinese officials have repeatedly reassured the Chinese people that food supplies are sufficient and there is no need to hoard. (CNS)

Will China plunge into a food crisis? Officials say no

As the Covid-19 pandemic slows down in China, the panic-buying frenzy goes on. Chen Jing reports on people bulking up on supplies across China amid fears of a looming food shortage.
Grilled snakes at a street market in China. (iStock)

Love for wild game: The history and the controversies

The Chinese people's love for consuming game meat goes back a long way, and is deeply rooted in history and culture. But doing so comes with risks, not least the risk of being infected by parasites, viruses, and bacteria. ThinkChina takes a look at how and why the Chinese eat various wild animals, as well as various other cultures that also have a penchant for game meat.