Hot pots are a Winter specialty in the north of China. Cooked in water or soup in pots made of copper, aluminium or clay are usually such food as lamb, beef, fish, shrimps, beancurd products and fresh vegetables. In Beijing, the most popular is the lamb hot pot. Paper-thin lamb slices could be instantly luscious right after dipping into the hot soup in the pot.
The origin of hot pot
It is hard to trace the origins of the hotpot. However, we do know that hot pot has been around more than 1,000 years in China. The prosperous time of this food was around Tang Dynasty. And in Qing Dynasty, this cooking style had been spread throughout China.
The sauces used in hot pot
A variety of sauces, usually home-made, is available to go with the hot pot. Common ingredients to mix a sauce may include sesame sauce, sesame oil, soy bean sauce, chilly oil, coriander, rice wine, preserved beancurd sauce and sweet garlic. A good blend of sauces would make a hot pot meal more enjoyable.
Time to eat
Typical Beijing hot pot is eaten indoors during the winter. But now, no matter when you are in Beijing, you can order a hot pot and enjoy it by yourself anytime.
How to eat
There are some ways to enjoy the hot pot. Each of them is easy to handle even you are a green hand.
Here is one of the easiest ways to eat.
At first, pour the water, the best choice is the soup cooked by some nutritious food such as the pork bone, into the pot. Once the water or soup is boiled, you can begin your hot pot experience.
Use the chopsticks to pick up a piece of beef, mutton, fish, vegetable, even a dumpling if you have ordered, put them into the boiled water and cook for a few seconds to minutes till they can be eaten in the right time.
After this series of actions, you can pick up you food from the pot. Before you put them into your mouth, do not forget to dip the sauce which will make the food more delicious.
The value of the hot pot
This cooking way makes you eat various dishes at the one meal. The nutritious broth used in the pot ensures you can eat nutrition as well as the delicious food at the same time.
It is a good way to warm up in the winter season. If you choose to drink a cup of wine during this meal time, you may have a good sleep at night.