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Luoyang is famous for its 24-course Water Banquet and Carp Dishes. Other delicious local dishes and snacks include Tangmian Jiao ( Steamed Dumplings), Zhangji Wonton, Zhangji Roast Chicken and Peony Soup.
The dish has a history of thousands of years. The dish was so named for two reasons. Firstly, unlike the usual custom in China, the dishes served during this banquet are brought one after another, like flowing water, hence the name "Water Banquet". The second reason is that around one third of the dishes served are soup or semi-soup dishes.
Although dishes in these banquets vary from one restaurant to another, you may be assured that carp is included nine times out of ten. The food is noted for its various soups with sour and spicy flavors. There are 24 courses in the banquet. The first course named "Luoyang swallow dish" is made of turnip shreds, chicken shreds, minced pork and other vegetables simmered in soup.
Although is not as famous as its rival Water-Banquet, is still worth a try. The dish was said to be created by a man surnamed Zhang in ancient times. It is popular dishes among the locals and tourists.
The dumpling are made in the shape of crescent moon. This dish originated in this area and is now customary all over China. Tangmian Jiao are famous for their thin wrappings and jade-like color.
Carp is arguably the most beloved dish in Luoyang. It is said that in the golden olden days of Luoyang, when the capital was swathed in mystery and paved with gold, the fish itself could cost as much as a whole live ox! The dish itself is considered as a great delicacy in these parts, beloved for its tender flesh, nutritional benefits and the stylish design of each dish.
The ideal carp dish is designed with subtle skill. The carp, with its head held high above the plate, is masterfully placed, seeming to be leaping over the cabbage "gorge" at the side of the plate, a symbol of competitive spirit. The dish also is known in these parts as "Carp Leaping over the Gorge".
The elegant environment there can calm you down the moment you enter it; it may even feel like an Elysian Field as you hear the light Buddhist music. The price of the food may be a bit high for many people, but it’s worth the price as the food is the unity of the form and spirit of meat or fish, making one reluctant to stop eating. Besides, the restaurant is also a good place for having tea. Eating a moderate amount of food is suggested, as the food can be quite greasy if too much is eaten.
Is there such thing as a free lunch? Yes. Juexiyuan Vegetarian Restaurant provides vegetarian food for free, asking for no payment from the consumers. Isn’t that surprising? This is all owed to the kind-hearted shopkeeper, who has been determined to accumulate virtue all of these years. There is a plastic basin at the door of the kitchen and on the basin are the words “according to conditions”, which means that how much you pay and whether or not you should pay are all dependent on yourself.