Chinese cooking culture is really great and profound. There are numerous ways to eat a duck; the following are six ways of eating duck in China.
1. Beijing Roast Duck 北京烤鸭 Beijing Kaoya /bay-jing kaow-ya/
Beijingroast duck is a famous duck dish from Beijing, the capital city of China. This duck dish is highly prized for its thin and crispy skin. Diners can eat the meat with pancakes, spring onions, hoisin sauce or sweet bean sauce. Quanjude and Bianyifang are two centuries-old restaurants offering this delicacy.
Quanjude Roast Duck (Qianmen Branch) 全聚德
Address: 30 Qianmen Avenue, Chongwen District (崇文区前门大街30号)
Average price per person: 124 yuan
Opening hours: 11:00–13:30; 16:30–20:00
Transportation: take bus No. 5, 17, 20, 22, 48, 59, 66, 69, 120, 126, 301, 690, 692 or 803 and get off at Qianmen.
Bianyifang Roast Duck (Hademen Branch) 便宜坊
Address: 16 Chongwen Men Wai Street, Chongwen District (崇文区崇文门外大街16号)
Average price per person: 111 yuan
Opening hours: 11:00 – 14:00; 17:00 – 21:30
Transportation: take Subway 2 or 5 and get off at Exit C, Chongwenmen Station (崇文门)
2. Nanjing Salted Duck 南京盐水鸭 Nanjing Yanshui Ya /nan-jing yan-shway ya/
The dish is famous for its white skin, tender meat, being rich in flavor but not too greasy. Every year around the Mid-Autumn Festival, the salted duck is seasoned with osmanthus, which makes the dish more delicious. Hence, the dish has another name: “osmanthus duck”.
Wanqinglou Restaurant 晚晴楼
Address: 1 West Gongyuan Xijie, Qinhuai District (秦淮区贡院西街1号)
Average cost per person: 111 yuan
3. Hunan Spicy Salted Duck 湖南酱板鸭 Hunan Jiangban Ya /hu-nan jyang-ban ya/
The dish soaks in more than 30 precious Chinese medicines and over 10 spices and is made through 15 progresses such as airing and baking. Because it is eye-catching with dark red, fragrant with sauce taste and highly nutritious, the dish is a great dish going with wine in a banquet.
4. Wuhan Duck Neck 武汉鸭脖 Wuhan Yabo /wu-han ya-bor/
It is a dish originated from Wuhan. The spicy duck neck has a deep reddish-brown and extremely spicy flavor. Diners can find it almost through out China.
5. Fujian Jiang Muya 福建姜母鸭 /fu-jyen jyang mu-ya/
The dish is quite popular in Fujiang, especially in Xiamen. It is a great dish in winter because it can dispel dampness and coldness. This dish goes quite well with beer.
6. SichuanTea Smoked Duck 四川烟熏鸭 Sichuan Yanxun Ya /si-chwan yen-sshoon ya/
The duck is hot smoked over burning tea leaves. Tea smoked duck is a kind of local special food Emeishan City, Sichuan. It is one of the classical Sichuan dishes.
Giant panda is a kind of bear with two colors: black and white. It is Chinese name is 大熊猫, Da Xiong Mao /dah-sshyong-maow/. At present, this cuddly animal lives nowhere else in the world outside captivity. Visitors want to see giant panda in China can visit the Panda Breeding Center in Chengdu, Seven Star Park Zoo in Guilin, Beijing Zoo and Shanghai Zoo.
A grown panda is about 75 centimeters (2.5 foot) tall and 1.5 meters (5 ft) long. It weighs up to 150 kg (330 lb). Female is smaller, weighing up to 125 kg (275 lb). Do you know the weight and the height of a baby panda? I guess most people might be surprised about the following information. Actually, a nascent panda is very small, it only weighs about 100 gram in average (the heaviest one only weighs about 170 gram), take 1/900 of the weight of mother. When a panda was born, it was pink with thin white lanugo fur, and the tail takes about 1/3 of the length (actually, people might ignore the tail of a grown panda, because compared to its length, the tail is really to short). One week later, light black fur turns up on the ears, the orbits and the shoulders of the baby panda, and 20 days later, black fur turns up on the hind legs. The black darkens day by day since then. Baby panda starts to crawl after 2 moths, and to run after 4 moths. Read China Hihglights’ special report for giant panda.
The following are some photos about the growth history for a giant panda.
While in Hangzhou, after visiting West Lake I saw Lingyin Temple on Feilai Mountain. The upkeep of this extremely popular tourist area, and the quality of materials used, all go to show the great prosperity of this medium-sized, east coast city near Shanghai.
The Chinese characters on the gate are Lingyin Shi /ling-yin shrr/ ('Spirit Hidden Temple'), written in traditional characters from right to left, as was the old way. This style (or from top to bottom) is still used on door lintel decorations, restaurants and book covers, etc. to give the feeling of age and custom.
Inside Lingyin Temple there were fires and incense altars in a big and busy spotless courtyard surrounded by lush and towering pines. The devout and those just coming for a blessing bowed and burned paper, candles and incense. Sounds of (recorded) Buddhist incantations floated out of the halls.
I had a look in various buildings. Each had an altar with people kneeling in front of a towering idol representing one of the many Buddhist deities. Buddhism spread to China from India by way of idols. Most Chinese do not know the Buddhist scriptures or even fundamentals taught by Gautama Siddhartha like the Eightfold path, or live like monks or nuns, yet many still say they believe in Fo -- Buddhism. Belief is usually shown simply by bowing and offering burnt offerings of paper, incense, and even real money to Buddhist images, keeping Buddhist tokens, and trusting in these for a blessing. I went into another hall where people could buy a mini Buddha image and put it with the rest to buy a blessing.
As a Christian, I didn't go in for any of the worshipful aspects of the tour, and if you go you don't need to either. Just be respectful. Don't disturb the worshippers and (flash) photography is not allowed in the halls (best not to take photos inside as the flash may accidently go off, and in the low light it is difficult to get good photos otherwise). On the other hand, if you want to burn some incense, a candle or paper (representing money), they are all sold outside the temple gate, along with various Buddhist keepsakes.
The hall which most caught my imagination was a "hall of disciples". There were hundreds of individual life-size figures, each one representing an important Buddhist disciple hundreds of years ago, elevated and lined up along the walls and walkways. Reminiscent of the Terracotta Army perhaps, except you look down on the Terracotta Warriors and Horses in their pits, but look up to Lingyin Temples' disciples!
I appreciated the architecture of this place and the thought and reverence that went into its construction and preservation. Though I didn't see any monks there, and it was definitely a tourist attraction, nobody could say that it was not a functioning Buddhist temple, with so many people worshipping and even making their pilgrimages there.