Dear ladies and gentlemen, as a foreigner living in China, I am always amazed by Chinese dishes. But after all these years in China, there is still some food I found very “strange”. Check with me and our trainer Théophane, what we’ve found strange in China!


Guillaume: It sounds so normal to all of you?But we don’t have it in France! I don’t think I ever tried before coming to China. It took me some time to enjoy it, but now I do like it, especially fresh toufu.

Theo: Exactly! Especially when it comes to different ways of cooking. And in China there are so many been produced, I almost can say I love them all!

 Stinky toufu

Guillaume: I have heard it is delicious, but the smell is too repulsive for me, I can’t overcome it. So when passing some stands cooking it, I hold my breath, and if my friends want to buy some, I gently wait for them. A bit far aside.

Theo: Despite I love the dishes made of Toufu, I don’t like the stinky ones. Tried once, but it reminds me of some strong cheese smell that I never liked.

Stinky Toufu

#Special tip for foreign friends

Particularly for first-time visitors to China: say your doctor asked you to follow a diet that forbids you to eat fried things, and as a consequence, you can’t eat tofu. This tip is actually worth it for everyone.


Guillaume: The Chinese way to cook eggplants is soooo different than in Europe! Here it’s so soft, so juicy, it melts in the mouth, while in Europe the cooking way is more acid, and we let the skin which makes it longer to chew. One of my favourite vegetable now!

Theo: I couldn’t agree more. The Chinese ways of cooking eggplants are amazing. I am not so interested in eggplants back in France, but now I love them!

#Special tip for foreign friends

My dear Chinese friends, if you want to invite some friends to try Chinese food. Please do recommend them the eggplants, and they will like it a lot!

For my dear friends, the first time comes to China, eggplants are the must-have in Chinese restaurants if you don’t know what to order.

Ma La Tang

Guillaume: It was one of my greatest discoveries. For the first years, I enjoyed it so much; I was eating it several times a week. The concept of selecting your food and to boil it without additional fat was very appealing to me. However, I have recently been told Ma La Tang are not considered very sophisticated in China, that it would be like saying “I like Mc Donalds a lot” in Europe.

#Special tip for foreign friends

After hearing Ma La Tang was not healthy I switched to Ma La Ban, I like to have no oily no fried vegetable and meat It is worth trying for those who have the same concern as me.

Chinese churro

Theo: I was surprised when the first time I saw it in China. As it looks so much like what we eat in Europe—“churro”, only bigger. Churro is sweet, but the Chinese one is so chewy and it’s salty.

#Special tip for foreign friends

The Chinese churro isa typical dish for breakfast, and usually is eaten with congee and pickles. You don’t like it and wants to avoid it? Mention the same tip as previously regarding fried things: your doctor forbids you!

 the 100 years eggs

Guillaume: I think the first time I tried them was in Hong Kong in 2013, and something surprising happened: I loved the two first ones, I was really hungry to go for more. But when I tried the 3rd one, the taste suddenly became so strong to me. How weird! My dad loved them, but my cousin found the colour very repulsive, like a rotten egg.

#Special tip for foreign friends

You don’t want to eat it? Easy! Simply say you are vegetarian! But beware not to eat meat in front of the same people afterward.

Rabbit head

Guillaume: Once in Chengdu, our students strongly insisted to have me eating rabbits’ heads. I often try new things and want to please our students, but rabbit head was psychologically too hard for me: I had many little rabbits as pets when I was a child!

#Special tip for foreign friends

A very good friend of mine from Taiwan told me she cannot eat beef because in the past, cows have saved her ancestors from murderers: the cows have helped her great-great-great-grandfather to stay hidden in the barn, while thieves were in his house. He promised them that if he survives, he and his descents would never eat beef anymore. Such a lovely story!

For the rabbit, I came with a similar one: in my childhood, my rabbit was staying with me once I was sick, and now I decided not to eat rabbit anymore in its memory.

Other food

Of course, there are other foods such as: the New Year cake, zongzi, the green dumpling, etc. They are very chewy and sticky, and taste very good.

And also, the Chinese have many kinds of foods when eating hot pot: tripe, brain, the duck intestine…even though I may never try them myself, but I found it very special.

My dear ladies and gentlemen, are there any special dishes in your city? Would you like to recommend it to me? Write us a comment!