Tanghulu or bing tanghulu, is not only a snack for Beijing locals, but also a representative of Beijingers’ childhoods. Although this snack is regarded as a food for children, it is also popular among adults. It consists of candied fruits on bamboo skewers that are approximately 20cm long. This snack can be found widely along the Beijing snack street of Wangfujing and also there are street vendors who travel from place to place selling it.
Tanghulu typically has a hardened sugar coating that comes from dipping the skewer in sugar syrup, but versions can also be found with a second chocolate coating, or sesame sprinkles. Traditionally, the fruit used has been Chinese hawthorn, but in recent times vendors have also used cherry tomatoes, mandarin oranges, strawberries, blueberries, pineapples, kiwifruit, bananas, or grapes, creating tanghulu that resemble fruit kebabs.
Tanghulu in Temple Fair
Temple fairs in Beijing are famous because it presents the regional culture. Tanghulu is a necessary role in Beijing temple fairs. The most traditional scene of a Tanghulu vendor is that he or she holds a straw bar which is stuck with many Tanghulu and stands in the street with the background of the noisy temple fair. During the temple fair, both adults and children would like to buy the Tanghulu and enjoy it when strolling temple fair. The sweet and sour taste of Tanghulu makes it be loved by all generations.
The characters of Tanghulu: Because Tanghulu is made of Chinese hawthorn, this fruit contains rich VC and other factors which are good for skins and body cycling. Improved by the locals, Chinese hawthorn was stuck one by one and them got the name “Tanghulu” according to its shape.
Tanghulu can improve the digest system of body and help to keep a fit for ladies. Chinese hawthorn which is the main material for Tanghulu has the functions such as promoting appetite, smoothing skin, lowering blood pressure, etc.
Old-brands of the Tanghulu
There are three old-brands of the Tanghulu in Beijing, namely Xinyuanzhai, Jiulongzhai and Bulaoquan.
Xinyuanzhai: Xinyuanzhai food factory was found in 1740, Qianlong Period. Former Xinyuanzhai was located in the east direction of Liulichang. The preserved fruits made n Xinyuanzhai are delicious. The elaborate making technology ensures the high quality of various preserved fruits.
Bulaoquan: Bulaoquan was found in 1736, Qianlong Period, too. One of the officials spoke highly of the Tanghulu in Bulaoquan. Base on the careful attitudes in the make process, from picking the material to sticking the Chinese hawthorn one by one, Bulaoquan’s Tanghulu is colored in distinctive and beautiful colors. And the taste is unforgettable for all generations.