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31 Oct, 2022, 11:12 GMT
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BEIJING, Oct. 31, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Hakka cuisine, also known as Dongjiang cuisine, is a branch of Cantonese cuisine. Compared with the other two branches, namely the exquisite and unique Guangzhou cuisine and the seafood-focused Chaozhou cuisine, Hakka cuisine appears simple and conservative and stresses a cooking method that preserves natural and authentic flavors. Such simplicity, however, has not stopped the Hakka people from inheriting and loving the Hakka cuisine.

The Hakka people’s food is culturally rich. Huang Zunxian, a celebrated poet of the late Qing Dynasty, once wrote a poem saying: “They moved here and there through arduous journeys, coming to the south back over a thousand years. Their dialect retains the accent of the Central Plains, and the rites and customs date back to the Three Dynasties.” The Hakka people have deep-rooted affection for the Central Plains of China, as extensively shown by their food traditions. Take the Stuffed Tofu of southern Jiangxi as an example. Stuffed Tofu is an improved version of the dumplings of North China. Here is the recipe: chop up the fresh meat and mix it with seasoning; cut the tofu into triangular pieces; slash a tiny opening on the side and put the meat stuffing in; fry the tofu pieces in a pan until they turn golden brown; add some water and wait for it to come to the boil. This dish is mouthwateringly aromatic, fresh, and nutritious.
A social norm of unity and mutual aid took shape over centuries of migrations of the Hakka people. The most representative practice is the Dutch treat. The Hakka people love dining with friends while each person pays his/her own way. Cooked meat would be divided into equal shares for all. They also love drinking and chatting together. If a household makes pounded tea, it would surely bring friends together for a small talk over tea. The Hakka food culture shows salient group features. The tradition of sending food as a gift is also an integral part of this culture, as a way to bring each other closer.
The southern Jiangxi Hakka cuisine boasts cultural depth and distinct local features. It embodies the unique customs of the Hakka people which are closely associated with local ways of life and spiritual culture.
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