The harvest season of autumn is the perfect time to enjoy the grand feasts in Guizhou

Gourmet

The harvest season of autumn is the perfect time to enjoy the grand feasts in Guizhou

by Live in Guizhou


PUBLISHED Nov 11, 2021 • 4MIN READ

No matter where you are from, which ethnic group you belong to, you must have your own “culture and delicacy”. The harvest season of autumn is the perfect time to enjoy the grand feasts in Guizhou: lotus banquet, the long-table banquet, tofu banquet, banquet listed as intangible cultural heritage with naturally nutritious food, etc. You will find your favorites!

At Anlong County, Qianxinan Buyi and Miao Autonomous Prefecture, Guizhou Province, there is a famous banquet known as “lotus banquet”. All courses on the menu are made from lotus, from its root, stem, leaves to its flowers. Chicken in lotus leaf, scrambled eggs with lotus leaves, deep-fried lotus root sandwiches, beef steak wrapped in lotus leaf, etc. Each dish features well-balanced colors and a stylish plate presentation. Be they cooked in any Chinese style, such as quick frying, stewing, stir frying, deep frying, and braising, the original flavors of the ingredients are always well-preserved.

Chishui in Zunyi is famous as “the Land of Bamboo” for the high-quality bamboos as a cooking ingredient. If you travel here, “bamboo banquet” is the thing not to be missed! The bamboo banquet in Chishui includes dishes like bamboo shoots, bamboo fungus with vegetables, bamboo-smoked pork, bean curd in bamboo tube, bamboo fungus spirit, etc., all of which are directly or indirectly related to bamboos. From the roots, fungi, shoots, tubes, to branches and leaves, every part of bamboo can find its way to the table.

The long-table banquet, as one of the most distinctive ethnic banquets in Guizhou, is very popular among the villages in Qiandongnan Miao and Dong Autonomous Prefecture, Guizhou Province. In those villages, major festivals and grand events are often celebrated with the long-table banquet where guests, relatives, and friends are invited to enjoy the lively feast. One cannot do without hot and sour fish soup on such an occasion. In addition, nutritious chicken congee, smoked pork made from a secret recipe, white cut chicken, tasty glutinous rice, and stir-fried vegetables are often served as well.

In Zhijin County, Bijie City, Guizhou Province, people often celebrate major festivals and sacrifice offerings with the most original folk specialty “Water Eight Bowls”. Various ingredients are organized for 16 dishes, eight served in bowls and eight in plates. “Water Eight Bowls” are customarily enjoyed by groups of eight people seated at a table, all of whom eat with big bowls, indicating that “With dishes shared by eight, the whole year will be great.”

The mountains of Guizhou are home to various types of fresh wild mushrooms, such as the termite mushroom, bamboo fungus, matsutake, and bolete. Mushrooms are rich in proteins but low in fat. Stewing or simmering for a long time won’t destroy their fresh, soft, and tender flavor. Dipped in the Guizhou-style sauce made from Tabasco pepper, the mushrooms cannot be more delicious. Mushroom hot pot is usually made by boiling mushrooms in bone soup or chicken soup. But even cooked only with mushrooms and water, the soup can still impress you with its freshness.

Thriving during the Republican period, “Sanyaotai” is a distinctive etiquette of the banquet for people of the Gelao ethnic group. This banquet is indispensable for weddings, birthday celebrations, house buildings, festival celebrations, etc. “Yaotai” in the dialect means “coming to an end”. The traditional custom features three processes of serving tea, wine, and food at the banquet. There is a saying that “First comes the tea for welcoming friends from afar, second comes the wine for enjoyment and entertainment, and third comes the food for reunion everywhere.” As the intangible cultural heritage item, “Sanyaotai” represents the highest standards of Gelao people to receive their guests.