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Manchu cuisine (simplified Chinese: 满洲菜; traditional Chinese: 滿洲菜; pinyin: Mǎnzhōu cài) is the cuisine of Manchuria. It uses the traditional Manchu staple foods of millet, broomcorn millet, soybean, peas, corn and broomcorn. It relies heavily on preserved foods (often pickling) due to the harsh winters and scorching summers in Northeast China. Manchu cuisine is also known for grilling, wild meat, strong flavors, and wide use of soy sauce. Manchu cuisine is more wheat based than Han Chinese cuisines.
The typical Manchu dishes include pickled vegetables. Manchurian hot pot (simplified Chinese: 满洲火锅; traditional Chinese: 滿洲火鍋; pinyin: Mǎnzhōu huǒguō) is a traditional dish, made with pickled Chinese cabbage, pork and mutton. Bairou xuechang (simplified Chinese: 白肉血肠; traditional Chinese: 白肉血腸; pinyin: báiròu xuěcháng) is a soup with pork and blood sausage and pickled Chinese cabbage. Suziyie doubao (simplified Chinese: 苏子叶豆包; traditional Chinese: 蘇子葉豆包; pinyin: sūzǐyè dòubāo) is a steamed bun, stuffed with sweetened, mashed beans, wrapped with perilla leaves outside. Sachima (simplified Chinese: 沙琪玛; traditional Chinese: 沙琪瑪; pinyin: shāqímǎ) is a candied fritter similar to Tatar Çäkçäk, which is a very popular sweet. Other common dishes are: suancai cuan bairou (Chinese: 酸菜白肉; pinyin: suāncài báiròu; sour vegetables with boiled meat), suan tangzi (simplified Chinese: 酸汤子; traditional Chinese: 酸湯子; pinyin: suān tāngzǐ; a sour soup with fermented corn flour), di san xian (a stirfry of eggplant, potato and green pepper), Manchu sausage, ludagun (a steamed roll made of bean flour) and niushe bing (simplified Chinese: 牛舌饼; traditional Chinese: 牛舌餅; pinyin: níushé bǐng; a type of cake).
The ancestors of the Manchu were the Jurchen and Mohe. The Mohe enjoyed eating pork, practiced pig farming extensively, and were mainly sedentary, and also used both pig and dog skins for coats. They were predominantly farmers and grew soybean, wheat, millet, and rice, in addition to engaging in hunting.
Although their Mohe ancestors did not respect dogs, the Jurchen people began to respect dogs around the time of the Ming dynasty and passed this tradition on to the Manchu, it was prohibited in Jurchen culture to use dog skin, and forbidden for Jurchens to harm, kill, and eat dogs, the Jurchens believed that the "utmost evil" was the usage of dog skin by Koreans.
The Manchu Han Imperial Feast (simplified Chinese: 满汉全席; traditional Chinese: 滿漢全席; pinyin: Mǎnhàn quánxí) includes many notable dishes in Manchu cuisine. This banquet combined the best cuisine from the Manchus, Han Chinese, Mongols, Huis and the Tibetans. It included 108 dishes (of which 54 are northern dishes and 54 are southern dishes) that would be eaten over three days. The Manchu palace banquets were subdivided into six grades. The first, second and third grades were prepared for deceased imperial ancestors. The fourth grade food was served to imperial family during the Chinese New Year and other celebrations. The fifth and sixth grades were served on all other occasions.
- Aisin Gioro, Ulhicun; Jin, Shi. "Manchuria from the Fall of the Yuan to the rise of the Manchu State (1368-1636)" (PDF). Retrieved 10 March 2014.
- Gorelova, Liliya M., ed. (2002). Handbook of Oriental Studies. Section 8 Uralic & Central Asian Studies, Manchu Grammar. Volume Seven Manchu Grammar. Brill Academic Pub. ISBN 9004123075. Retrieved 6 May 2014.