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Yan Can Cook: Spice Kingdom

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Wine making or baijiu making in China goes back thousands of years. Martin visits a famous Chengdu distillery for a close up look on how Chinese baijiu is produced. He narrates famous Chinese legends connected to the culture of wine. For a more contemporary look he attends a typical Chinese banquet and shows the popular Chinese drinking games and toasting.

There are 230 million children under the age of 15 in China. On this show Martin meets up with many talented ones from Chengdu. They are future opera divas, poets, pop singers, sculptors and of course, chefs! Chengdu, the next generation, is front and center on this episode.

WGBY Create
Sat Dec 28th, 11:30am
Sat Dec 28th, 11:30pm
Sun Dec 29th, 5:30pm

In Chengdu, a snack is called a small bite, or 'xiao chi'. But a 'xiao chi' is really a lot more than just a simple snack. It can be an appetizer, a street food, but it can also be a cleansing of the palate between courses, or when you assemble many on them on a table, they can make a fabulous banquet. On this show Martin takes small bites but tells a big story.

Outside of Chengdu there are several well known tea plantations. Martin explores the local tea cultivation process, samples different types of popular brews, attends a tea serving ceremony, and visits the oldest tea house in People's Park in Chengdu. In the studio Martin cooks up dishes that use tea as an ingredient or flavoring agent.

The origin of Chengdu can be credited to Dujiangyan, a set of levies that diverted the Min River over 2,000 years ago. Martin visits this UNESCO historical site and saw first hand how the water had created the fertile farmland which eventually gave rise to the city of Chengdu. He enjoys the abundance of fruits and vegetables by visiting local farms and orchards.

Sichuan is mountainous. Outside of Chengdu many ethnic minorities reside up in the mountains for centuries. Mountain music is a popular instrument used to express local culture and record local history. Martin meets up with Mr. Zhang a famous mountain singer and learns about the life and cuisine of the mountains.

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