Stereotypes about Chinese Cuisine in Pakistan VS Reality

Chinese cuisine in Pakistan has existed for decades, however, it has been hugely mistaken as well. People in Pakistan have always combined ‘desi’ spices with ‘alleged’ Chinese dishes to make them tasteful and able to be eaten. Even in many Chinese restaurants, there are foods that claim to be from authentic Chinese Cuisine, and on the name of originality, people are often served plain, bland and tasteless dishes. This is all because of the stereotypes that have been here since forever.

“Chinese food is bland.”

Well, only if you have tasted most Chinese dishes that are cooked following authentic recipes, you won’t say that in a general sense. Of course, there are foods that are less flavorsome and have mild taste but then, this generalization is not valid only to Chinese food. There are foods from sub-continental region as well that are mildly tasty, like Khichri, however, people do make changes in Khichri as well in order to make it tastier. Long story short, generalizing the point that Chinese food is bland is definitely not an option unless you’ve tried most Chinese foods that are cooked with authentic recipe.

”Ketchup, Soy Sauce & Chili Sauce are the main ingredients of MOST Chinese foods.”

Actually, there’s a lot more to it. And even if there wasn’t, there are barely any local brands that manufacture authentic chili sauce. Ketchup, soy sauce and chili sauce; the use of these three ingredients is too mainstream in south Asian region. Sure, but by ketchup they don’t mean that sweet packed goo that companies are manufacturing. Instead, it is always preferred to cook it like a tomato puree having a tangy, vinegary taste with a tad bit sprinkle of sugar in it. Also, Ketchup is one of the main ingredients in Chinese foods from Shanghai but China is huge, and so is its culture and related food. There are so many sauces that are used that it is often difficult to remember each of them.

“Most Chinese foods have a hint of sweetness.”

Um, not exactly. This is actually caused by the ready-made ketchup which is  used in most Chinese foods in Pakistan instead of tomato puree. Yes, there are foods in which sugar is used but that is just to balance the taste overall, because the sauces and pepper used in the food are pretty strong already.

“Least spices are used in Chinese foods.”

Well, let’s start this one with a Chinese province name Sichuan. Sichuan is China’s 5th largest province out of 23 provinces. It was formerly known as Szechaun or Szechwan. From this province a cuisine was originated called Sichuan cuisine. Guess what are the main ingredients of Sichuan cuisine?
Red chili flakes, chili peppers, garlic, tangerine peels, Chinese pepper corn, bean sauce and soy sauce.
That’s a lot of spice right there! Also, most Chinese foods that are eaten worldwide and are included in Chinese cuisine internationally originate from Sichuan.

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  1. I like the valuable information you provide in your articles. I will bookmark your blog and check again here regularly. I am quite certain I will learn many new stuff right here! Good luck for the next!

  2. Nice post hafi but pakistani food can’t envision existence without spice, like here i found links not allowed

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