Story about Gongbao Jiding
One of China"s most popular dishes, Gongbao Jiding contains diced chicken, stir-fried with dryv chili peppers and peanuts. The dish is named after Ding Baozhen, a Gongbao or palatial guardian, whose task was to teach the crown prince. As Ding Baozhen had been fond of chicken since childhood, the family cook would often serve steamed chicken for dinner.
One day, Ding Baozhen visited the home of his good friend, Wang Xiaoqin, where he looked forward to devouring his customary plate of steamed chicken. On this occasion, however, there was not enough time to steam the bird, so Wang Xiaoqin chopped it into small cubes, added dry chili peppers and garlic, and boiled it. As soon as the improvised dish hit his taste buds, Ding Baozhen was full of praise for Wang"s adventurous cooking style.
Ding Baozhen was later made governor of Sichuan, and held a banquet for his colleagues. Wang was also invifed, and when the guests tasted his dish, they extended their compliments, and asked what it was called. Ding Baozhen was stumped. Although he had enjoyed this dish for 10 years or more, he had never given it a name, and the illiterate Wang was unable to assist.
One of the guests suggested that it be given Ding"s official title. It was thereafter known as Gongbao Jiding. It was only a matter of time before the ingredients and cooking method were made public. This Sichuan recipe has been handed down over generations, and is now a national favorite.
Gongbao Jiding is a delicate mix of flavors that combine sweet, savory and spicy. It has even
been canned and sent to outer space, for the delectation of Chinese astronauts茫鈧€?/P>