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Five Popular Chinese Spices
Chinese food has become a delicacy for almost everyone around the world. People in most countries recognize the Chinese cuisine and have suitably modified it according to their tastes.
And this has also led to the growing importance of authentic spices used in Chinese cooking. The Chinese have been using spices and herbs for years. Not only do they use it for cooking some amazing food, it is also known to have healing properties.
Nowadays, you can easily purchase various spices used in Chinese cooking from the supermarkets. And if you want to find a few exotic varieties, the specialty food stores are your best choice.
So, if you are willing to make authentic Chinese delicacies, here is a list of spices used in Chinese cooking.
Five Popular Chinese Spices
A very common ingredient for Chinese dishes, ginger has been a favourite item for the Chinese. Its healing properties are well known and ginger is generously used for making different types of Chinese curries and chutneys.
Sometimes, chopped ginger is also used for salads. A particular variety of pickled ginger is also used as a dressing for various Chinese dishes. Even ground ginger is sometimes added to food for enhancing its flavour.
Chinese All Spice Mixture
The Chinese all spice mixture is basically a combination of five grounded spices. It consists of cloves, cinnamon, star anise, fennel seeds and Szechuan pepper. This is a traditional spice mix that was based on the principle of balancing the varied tastes of sweet, sour, salty, bitter and pungent.
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The all-spice mixture helps to enhance the taste of food to a great extent and is therefore used for marinating meat, fish or seafood. It is also added to gravies for various dishes. At times, liquorice is also added to this spice mix for extra flavouring.
As the name suggests, the Szechuan peppercorn is particularly useful for making Szechuan food, a particular variety of Chinese cuisine. It has a slightly tangy flavour that lends a completely different taste to the dish.
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The whole spice is first dry roasted in a pan and grounded before adding it to the food. It can be used for all kinds of meaty dishes along with fish and seafood preparations.
The star shaped native fruit of China, the star anise is extensively used in Chinese cuisine. It is particularly used for making soups and stews.
The liquorice taste of this spice blends well with soups or gravy. The whole spice or a grounded star anise powder can be used for preparing food.
If you like to have a fiery taste in your food, adding hot mustard can be a great idea.
The sharp taste of this mixture is quite strong and immediately hits your taste buds.
The Chinese utilize a special curry powder that gives a milder taste to their curries. Though, it is quite similar to the Indian curry powder, it is slightly moderate and is not so spicy.
A readymade mixture of ginger, garlic, cloves, chilli pepper, fenugreek, mace, turmeric, cumin and paprika is used for making this curry powder.