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“A Bite of China” brings fame to “hollow noodles”
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  • http://english.dbw.cn  2017-06-01 10:10:35
     

    The second season of the gourmet documentary "A Bite of China" has created quite a buzz with the stunning culinary skills featured. It's particularly cooked up a lot of interest in some specially-made noodles from Shaanxi province. Let's head to the small village in northwest China where the locals are the master noodle-makers, and find out more about the thousand-year-old technique.

    Early in the morning, when day light is soon to break the night, Zhang Shihong gets up to prepare the flour. 40 to 3.5, the proportion between flour and salt, is the perfect number after decades of trials.

    In qinjiazhuang village, everybody is a master at making kongxin noodles, which translates to hollow noodles. The skill is carried on from generation to generation. After Zhang's parents passed away, his sixth uncle took on the duty of carrying on the torch.

    "There are 7 steps in making the noodles and every one connects with each other. Fail at any step, it is impossible to move on to the next one."

    After two rounds of fermentation, at 2 the next morning, Zhang and his wife start the most essential process.

    "This is the hardest step: twist the dough and split it into two, tie them up on the sticks and press them to make sure they don't drop." said Zhang Shihong, Noodle Maker.

    No instructions written down or printed, everything to do with these noodles is learnt through word of mouth. When Zhang's son comes home from school, the boy joins his parents, hanging up the noodles and letting gravity lend a hand.

    When the sun rises the following morning, the yard is filled with the warm smell of wheat. And the noodles, now thin as hair, drapes under the sunlight.

    "These are the traditional skills passed on within families and are facing extinction. Knowing more about them feels like paying respect to the older generations and their wisdom." said Chen Lei, Director, "A Bite of China Ii" Episode 2.

    Director Chen Lei shot his episode of "A Bite of China" at the home of Zhang Shixin. Just days after the program was broadcasted on air, Zhang Shixin passed away from cancer. He had sat and watched the whole process as his family showed their skills for the cameras. His love for it, is alien to the young people from the region.

    "Young people want to go to big cities and find jobs. They are not interested in learning how to make the noodles." said Zhang Shihong, Noodle Maker.

    "A Bite of China" has brought sudden fame and fortune to the noodle makers. However, whether that traditional skill will stay alive, time will tell.

    Author:    Source:xinhua    Editor:Yang Fan

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