Chinese Food and the Etiquette It Demands

China is one place where tradition is held in high regard. Beliefs are carried over to the succeeding generations to ensure their continuity. Even though the place is highly modern, traditions are not pushed away for the sake of technology. The preparation of Chinese food and its consumption is also done in a certain way. When it comes to areas outside of China, the traditions are not so much adhered to, but some are still followed.

One fine example is with the preparation of the food itself. While a pan may suffice in stir-frying the ingredients, a wok is usually used. It looks tradition in design, but is the best in preparing the different recipes of Chinese foods we have.

When Chinese food is being served, it is not done in plates, but rather in bowls as it was the case in traditional China. This applies to meals served at sit-in Chinese restaurants, especially the high end ones, and in homes where fine dining is appreciated. There are exceptions though, like with take-outs where a bag is used instead. But it’s more a matter practicality than it is non-adherence to tradition.

In most places, it is common to have cutlery at the table. A knife, spoon and fork are mostly used at the dining table because of the nature of the meals- there’s always something that needs cutting or slicing. Chinese food, on the other hand, is cut into small bite-size pieces during the preparation phase. That means when it’s served, the knife and spoon does not really get used. The fork isn’t either, but rather chopsticks are. There are plastic ones that can be reused designed for home use, and wooden ones which come with take out. This is the one tradition accompanying Chinese food that has not been wiped out, and if the past trends are anything to go by, will continue being used far into the future. It’s often hard for someone to know how to hold them right the first time, but with subsequent use, the skill is mastered. Holding a bowl of rice close to your mouth is pushing the food in with the chopsticks is allowed when you find it difficult to pick it up.