Xi Shi, Yang Guifei, Wang Zhaojun and Diao Chan were dubbed as four beauties of ancient China, with Xi Shi topping the list as the embodiment of beauty. There are four famous dishes in China’s traditional cuisine exactly named after the four beauties.
A dim sum is called Xi Shi Tongue in Xi Shi’s hometown. Confectioner makes powder with glutinous rice flour which, together with a dozen chopped nutlets, including jujube paste, walnut, sweet-scented osmanthus and green plum, are used as stuffing and put into tongue-shaped mould for moulding. Both boiling and frying are ok. The cake is defined by a color like bright moon and fragrant, sweet and refreshing taste. In addition, a soup made of seafood clam is also touted as Xi Shi Tongue and Top Fresh in the World.
It’s a Sichuan cuisine uniquely created by famous chef of Shanghai. Fat yet tender hen is used as major ingredient and grape wine as the condiment. When cooking is complete, the cuisine, rich in aroma with intoxicating taste, got the name Royal Chicken. There is another dish also named Royal Chicken in Xi’an, which uses chicken breast, chopped scallion, cooking wine and mushroom as the stuffing to make dumpling. It’s featured by the shape of full ear of wheat, thin wrapper and refreshing taste.
It’s also called Loach Worming into Bean Curd. Loach is employed to symbolize wicked Tung Cho. When loach has nowhere to hide itself in the hot soup, it plunges its way into cold bean curd and couldn’t succeed in escaping from being cooked, which is similar to the story that Wang Yun offered Diao Chan to as a honey-trap. The dish is defined by pure white bean curd, delicious yet hot taste and savoury cooking liquor.
Legend has it that Wang Zhaojun, born in Kingdom of Chu, was unaccustomed to having food made of flour when going out of the frontier. So the chef mixed vermicelli and fried gluten puff and cooked them in duck soup, which was much favored by Zhaojun. Later, people cooked vermicelli, gluten and fat duck and named it as Zhaojun Duck which has been well persisted into today.