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Amazing! International students make flower-shaped buns, enjoy peony banquet in Yuncheng, Shandong

2023/4/7 12:25:42

Amazing! International students make flower-shaped buns, enjoy peony banquet in Yuncheng, Shandong

“Amazing! Is this edible?” Roland from Cote d'Ivoire repeatedly asked, “Is this delicately carved, exquisitely arranged peony banquet really edible?”

On March 25th, 6 international students from the United States, Tanzania, Sudan, Bangladesh and other countries visited Yuncheng County, Heze City, E China’s Shandong province to enjoy the local cuisine.

At Yunzhou Hotel, the international students were amazed by the exquisite peony banquet, which is cooked with flower petals and buds.

Li Chuandi, a “Qilu craftsman” and “chief technician of Shandong Province”, introduced to the overseas students, “The consumption of peonies began in the Song Dynasty. In the Ming and Qing Dynasties, a relatively mature cooking method had been formed. Stamens, petals and peels... every part of a peony can be made into delicious dishes. Moreover, peony is rich in protein, amino acids, vitamins, flavonoids and other nutrient elements. No matter how it is cooked, the aroma of peony will never change.”

There are 16 dishes in the banquet, such as steamed chicken with peony and mutton soup with peony, all of which are characteristic dishes that international students have never tasted before. For each dish served, they took out their cameras for pictures, and praised it with few Chinese words they knew about like “Mei Li” and “Piao Liang”, which means beautiful and pretty.

Alex from the United States said, “There are so many delicious food in China, and the peony banquet is like a work of art. Thanks to the peony banquet, we have a better understanding of Chinese peony culture. It is amazing that chefs can make carvings out of the food!”

Zhao Xin, chef of a steamed bun shop, teacehed the international students how to make steamed flower-shaped buns and colorful dumplings.

“The main ingredients of these buns are flour, fruits and vegetables, like the yellow part is pumpkin puree, the green part is spinach and red part is red yeast rice. They are delicious and nutritious.” Zhao said.

Nebras and Tafaul from Sudan were particularly interested in making steamed bun. Although the process was a little complicated, they took it very seriously. “Those girls are very handy!” said Zhao Xin.

“I really want to take my peony buns back to show my mom,” Tafaul said as she snapped photos of her adorable creations. “I’m going to post them on my social media and share them with my friends.”

“We really like Chinese food, especially Shandong pastry.” Early in the morning, the students came to Yuncheng County’s famous meal — He Jia Zhuangmo.

As the representative project of Yuncheng County’s intangible cultural heritage, He-family Zhuang meat pie is filled with beef puree, with scallions, ginger, powder, oil, salt and other seasoning.

“This is much more complicated than pizza,” said Alex from the United States. As soon as the Zhuangmo was taken out of the pot, the students couldn’t wait to taste it.

“We had a lot of fantastic food in Yuncheng County, which I’ve never tried before in China,” said Sharifu. “The Chinese culture is so profound that every food has a cultural story behind it. I’m going to sends these food pictures to more my friends, and hope that they’ll have a chance to come to Yuncheng, too!”

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