Anhui cuisine is known for its use of wild herbs, from both the land and the sea, and simple methods of preparation. Braising and stewing are common cooking techniques. Frying and stir frying are used much less frequently in Anhui cuisine than in other Chinese culinary traditions. Anhui cuisine consists of three styles: the Yangtze River region, Huai River region, and southern Anhui region. Anhui has ample uncultivated fields and forests, so the wild herbs used in the region's cuisine are readily available. Anhui cuisine is heavily associated with tofu, with Chinese folklore crediting the creation of tofu to the Han dynasty prince Liu An who hailed from Shou County (dubbed the "hometown of tofu"). According to Chinese legend, stinky tofu was created by Anhuinese scholar Wang Zhihe who sold his product in Beijing to make a living after failing the imperial examination. Anhui is the home of hairy tofu where it is a popular snack.
Also known as "four seasons tofu", is a traditional local snack in Huainan, Anhui.
nóngjiā dàn jiǎo
These dumplings, usually associated with rural cooking, use thin sheets of egg instead of flour for the wrapping. Egg dumplings traditionally use pork as a filling. In preparation, a ladle is lightly coated with oil and heated, well beaten eggs are spooned into the ladle and cooked until the mixture forms a dumpling wrapper. The pork filling is then spooned into the egg wrapping and the entire dumpling steamed. It is often served with soy sauce.
A popular dish named after Li Hongzhang, a prominent Qing dynasty statesman from Anhui Province. The dish, a complex soup, is somewhat salty with a taste of sweetness. Many ingredients are used in the soup but the most common ones include sea cucumber, fish, squid, bamboo, dry bean curd, chicken, ham and assorted vegetables.
Luzhou roast duck
A popular dish from Hefei which first gained recognition when it was offered as tribute to the imperial court. While not as well known internationally as Peking duck, Luzhou roast duck has won awards and distinction within China.
A regional dish that originated in Sanhe, Feixi County, but can now be found in Hefei. The dish's main components are rice flour and a regional species of small white shrimp. The shrimp are stir fried with leeks and soy sauce, while the rice flour is soaked in water and later added to the shrimp. The dish is brown in colour and tastes pleasantly salty. It is eaten with a spoon.
Steamed stone frog
Qīngzhēng shí wā
The dish has been proven to be rich in protein and other nutrients.
Wushan imperial goose
The history of Wushan imperial goose dates back to the Tang dynasty. The dish is lightly coloured and has a fragrant and salty taste.
Stinky mandarin fish
Chòu guì yú
The dish smells stinky but tastes delicious and tender. The stinky mandarin fish has a complete shape and a bright red color. It emits a pure and special pickled flavor. The meat is delicate, mellow and tasty.