Jump to content
  • Welcome to the eG Forums, a service of the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters. The Society is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of the culinary arts. These advertising-free forums are provided free of charge through donations from Society members. Anyone may read the forums, but to post you must create a free account.

35 Chinese words describing different cooking


hzrt8w
 Share

Recommended Posts

This is a spin-off discussion.

Ben Sook's post, (this one), said there are 35 Chinese lexicons describing different ways of Chinese cookings.

My Cyber Mom Jo-mel's post, (this one), said she has a book that listed 30 of them.

I would really like to all 35 Chinese lexicons, if not at least 30, which describe the different ways of Chinese cookings.

Can you list any of these 35?

W.K. Leung ("Ah Leung") aka "hzrt8w"
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I came up with only 23 lexicons on Chinese cookings. Took me a while...

炒 (chow) Stir-fry

爆 (bao) stir-fry, quick, high heat

蒸 (jing) steam

烤 (hou) barbecue

燒 (shiu) burn, (open fire)

炸 (zha) deep-fry

釀 (yeung) stuffed, usually steamed of pan-fried

焗 (guk) bake

拌 (boon) mix (after cooking)

烹 (pung) cook (generic term)

煲 (bo) boil

燉 (dun) double-boil

浸 (jum) boil (in water) or deep-fry

煮 (zhue) just cook (can be white-boiled)

扒 (pa) usually means pouring sauce on top

撈 (lo) mix (e.g. with oyster sauce)

燜,炆 (mun) slow cook (braise)

煎 (zhin) sear

鹵 (lo) braise with five spices

煨 (wui) bake

灼 (cherk) boil

燴 (wui) mix (cook over slow heat)

煙 (fun) smoke

W.K. Leung ("Ah Leung") aka "hzrt8w"
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I read this in a cookbook/treatise on Chinese cuisine long ago, 40 years , while in university and I was just beginning to search for my roots. It seemed at the time an astronomical number, until I read another book where the author said essentially the same. I can't remember the sources now, but they wrote the Chinese characters and then transliterated them into English using the Pinyin style, approximate at best. I have never heard of the majority of the terms myself. Asking me whether I can remember what I read 40 years ago is a fool's errand because I sometimes can't even remember my own name. :rolleyes:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I seem to recall that Fuchsia Dunlop's magnum opus on Sichuan cooking has an extraordinarily comprehensive list of Chinese cooking, cutting and flavouring techniques listed - that might be a resource for you to turn to on this?

And since she is a member of eGullet, under the name 'fiore', perhaps she will read this and chime in? :)

Looking forward to the results - JH

Edited by jhirshon (log)
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Post?? I am a confirmed dinosaur when it comes to anything related to the computer. Sorry.

What he means is, " I don't know the characters!!" :laugh::laugh:

and, neither do I. :sad:

However, Ah Leung is well on his way to fulfilling your request, Susan.

Dejah

www.hillmanweb.com

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Duoxie nimen! Anybody want to guess why the character for "boil" has a "ren" or "person" radical?? Oohhh...... :shock:

All the other cooking forms have mostly "fire" radicals.........

Edited by Susan G (log)

I'm a canning clean freak because there's no sorry large enough to cover the, "Oops! I gave you botulism" regrets.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Eureka!! I have found the list. It's in one of my cookbooks "The Encyclopaedia of Chinese Cooking" by Kenneth Lo. In fact he lists 40 terms, starting on page 9 of this book and goes to page 20.

Great going, Ben! I can imagine how you felt when you found it!

I have the book, too. I had been going over all my books to see what methods were listed, but I hadn't come to Lo's books yet, so I'm happy you found it. He really just about covers it all. When I have a minute I plan to check his list against "Chinese Cooking" and see how they meld. Lo has some good explanations --- as if he was right beside you, explaining it.

Wish I knew how to scan a page in a book and then get it to the computer!

I already have a question, tho. The character for "variation on braising" ' (#24 in Lo) is 'chu/ju'. But I can't find the character as written. It is 火 on the left and 局 on the right --- but I can't find the two together as one character. herzt has the same character as 'bake'.

Lo's last paragraph in that chapter says "There are many more cooking terms than the foregoing forty. Every province and region has its own expressions and pecularities. Some of the cooking terms are related to the material and ingredients used. But forty is a round number, and the various local terms and expressions, although they may run into dozens more, are really only variations of these principal, basic terms."

WOW! More?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Duoxie nimen!  Anybody want to guess why the character for "boil" has a "ren" or "person" radical??  Oohhh...... :shock:

All the other cooking forms have mostly "fire" radicals.........

Ah but there's a fire radical there. Look at the bottom. Almost all of the characters pronunciation is cantonese.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The character for "variation on braising" ' (#24 in Lo) is 'chu/ju'. But I can't find the character as written. It is 火 on the left and 局 on the right --- but I can't find the two together as one character

焗?

Edited by liuzhou (log)

...your dancing child with his Chinese suit.

 

The Kitchen Scale Manifesto

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have lost count of the number of different Chinese cooking methods: in my book on Sichuan food I list 56. Some of them are separate characters, others are variations on a theme (for example the basic word for 'braising' is 烧 shao, but it has lots of variants depending on the flavourings used, the colour of the sauce, or the consistency of the final sauce). Some characters are used differently in different regions, and some cooking terms are pure dialect: eg Sichuan has a cooking method called 'du' 督+ 火 fire radical (my Chinese software does not have the full character), which is, I'm told, basically an onomatopoeia for the sound of a simmering pot! Also, some methods are regional specialities: eg the 'ju' that was mentioned earlier in this thread is one you come across a lot in the Cantonese south, but I can't remember seeing it used in Sichuan.

It's actually hard to be entirely precise about definitions of cooking methods because many of them overlap a bit, and because the terms have different meanings in different parts of China.

Fuchsia

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have lost count of the number of different Chinese cooking methods: in my book on Sichuan food I list 56. Some of them are separate characters, others are variations on a theme Fuchsia

Welcome to the forum, Ms Dunlop!

Hope you will continue to chime in with your expertise. :biggrin:

Dejah

www.hillmanweb.com

Link to comment
Share on other sites

焗 jú

It is not in any of my dictionaries, either ----- and NJStar just gives me a box when I copy/paste it there. How were you able to print it?

And is it baking or braising?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

My guess it's a cantonese character rather than a mandarin character. In cantonese, it means baked as in a cassarole.

I believe, from my understanding of studying Chinese history, the First Emporer (Qinshihuang, 秦始皇), Qin Dynasty, had unified the Chinese language - the written portion. Though different regions maintain their local dialects, the written language remained one. However, Mao had advocated the Simplified Chinese character set. That's the character set you see used throughout Mainland China today. Hong Kong and Taiwan, on the other hand because they are under different rulings, continue to use the Traditional Chinese character set. Cantonese and Mandarin are 2 different dialects, with different pronouniciations of the same Chinese character.

This word, 焗 jú [Mandarin], means baking, not braising. But... some Chinese dishes were named 焗 but may not necessarily be baking in an oven. For example: 上湯焗龍蝦 (Lobster "baked" with superior broth). The lobster is not really baked in a dry oven, but more like "steamed" with lid on over a wok.

W.K. Leung ("Ah Leung") aka "hzrt8w"
Link to comment
Share on other sites

焗 jú

It is not in any of my dictionaries, either ----- and NJStar just gives me a box when I copy/paste it there. How were you able to print it?

NJStar does not seem to have a complete Chinese character set. I have seen that happened before.

W.K. Leung ("Ah Leung") aka "hzrt8w"
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  Cantonese and Mandarin are 2 different dialects, with different pronouniciations of the same Chinese character.

Good post Ah Leung. The Japanese have adopted the same Chinese character set (Kanji) and have been using it for the past 1200 years or so, along with their own hirakana and katakana, which were developed later.

Edited by Ben Hong (log)
Link to comment
Share on other sites

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...