Jiemo dun is a cold dish made of Chinese cabbage and mustard. It is especially popular in Beijing and Dongbei (the northeastern part of the country). Traditionally it is consumed during the Lunar New Year, when holiday revellers tire of greasy food. The crisp, cold cabbage is said to make a great palate cleanser.
Preparation is simple: put cabbage into a colander and pour hot water over it. Then add mustard, rice vinegar and sugar. Put it in a porcelain pot and let it sit for at least a day, so that the cabbage absorbs the marinade.
According to Beijing Evening News, the best jiemo dun should be spicy but not chokingly hot.
Why has the dish been in the news recently?
Stephen Harper, Canada’s prime minister, seems to have enjoyed it during a trip to Beijing this month (see WiC last week). As it turns out, Harper enjoyed the flavour of jiemo dun so much that he even dipped slices of braised pork into what remained of the mustard sauce.
Where to eat it?
Harper dropped in on One Bowl Home, a restaurant on Pufang Road in southern Beijing’s Fengtai district. The eatery is well-known for its traditional noodles and snacks (Tel: 86-10 6765 4321).
Another place to enjoy the traditional Beijing dish is Haiwanjü: 11 Zengguang Road, Haidian District, Beijing (Tel: 86 10 8837 4993).
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