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香港人对火锅如此痴迷是怎样一种体验?

更新时间:2017-12-31 12:26:32 来源:纽约时报中文网 作者:佚名

Hong Kongs hot pot obsession
香港人对火锅如此痴迷是怎样一种体验?

It was past midnight in a residential area in Cheung Sha Wan, and only Tai Po King Restaurant and a few other local eateries were still open on the quiet street. As I walked inside, loud chatter filled the small but bright dining area, and workers who’d just got off their night shifts were huddled around the tables clinking small glasses of beer and smoking cigarettes. Fresh chilli and spices were being fried in the kitchen, and the fumes started spreading out into the dining area. You could sense the anticipation as we all sat waiting for one thing: the restaurant’s signature Gai Bo (literally, ‘chicken pot’), a steaming pot of spicy, saucy, stir-fried chicken.

午夜过后,在长沙湾(Cheung Sha Wan)一个居民区内的安静街道上,只有太哺金餐厅(Tai Po King Restaurant)和其他一些当地餐馆仍然开放。我走进一家餐馆时,小而明亮的用餐区内满是大声聊天的上班族,他们刚刚下夜班,围在桌子旁,喝着小杯啤酒,抽着烟。厨房里正在炸新鲜辣椒和香料,烟气开始向就餐区域蔓延。你能感受到我们的期待,因为我们都在那里坐着等待一样东西:餐厅招牌Gai Bo(字面意思是"鸡煲"),一个冒着热气的辣味炒鸡锅。

Hot pot has long been a big part of China and Hong Kong’s dining culture, a simple one-dish concept where fresh vegetables and raw meat are quickly poached in boiling soup stock, with soy sauce and condiments like fresh coriander, spring onions and garlic adding extra flavour. After all the ingredients are eaten, a belly-warming and nutritious broth remains. It is a shared dining experience, where families and friends gather around the hot pot to share stories and a meal.

火锅长期以来一直是内地和香港餐饮文化的重要组成部分,是一种简单的一道菜理念,将新鲜的蔬菜和生肉快速地煮在汤汁中,加入酱油以及新鲜香菜、葱和大蒜等调味品来提味。所有食材都吃完之后,还有一锅温热营养的肉汤。这是一种共享的用餐体验,家人朋友聚在火锅旁,分享故事与美食。

The versatile cooking method of hot pot is believed to date back to the early Middle Ages in the Asian steppes to the north as a solution to eat and keep warm around one communal fire, according to Mary Ellen Snodgrass in the Encyclopedia of Kitchen History. The centuries-old comfort food then spread around the region, inspiring variations like Szechuan Maotu hot pot, a Chongqing specialty with a tongue-numbing broth and cow innards; and Peking chrysanthemum hot pot found in Sukang, where the broth is made from white chrysanthemum flowers, prawns and pork. The cooking method even influenced Japan’s nabemono (table cookery) – a Japanese version of hot pot where the broth contains chicken or seaweed, and cooked ingredients are served in individual bowls with dipping condiments.

根据《厨房史百科全书》中的玛丽•艾伦•斯诺德格拉斯(Mary Ellen Snodgrass)的说法,她认为火锅的多种烹饪方法可以追溯到中世纪早期北方的亚洲草原,人们共同生火,解决饮食问题,也能围在火堆旁取暖。这种有几世纪历史的美食传到周边区域,演变成了四川毛肚火锅——一种重庆特色,汤汁麻口,食材为牛肚;以及源于苏杭的北京菊花火锅,汤里是白菊花,对虾和猪肉。烹调的方法甚至影响了日本的nabemono(桌上烹饪)——日本版本的火锅,其中肉汤含有鸡肉或海藻,煮熟的食材在单独的碗中蘸调味品。

But the version that can be found today in Hong Kong is so comforting, flavourful and affordable that it has become a staple in a city that has a short attention span when it comes to food trends. It may not have been invented here, but with 266 restaurants offering Gai Bo on Hong Kong’s dining directory OpenRice, it has truly become a dish of the city.

在香港这个没有时间去关注食物潮流的城市,这种火锅以其舒爽、美味、实惠的特点,成为这里的主流食物。虽然火锅不是在这里发明的,但是香港餐厅指南"开饭喇"上面提供了266家鸡煲餐馆,鸡煲真正成为这座城市的一道美食。

What’s different about Gai Bo from traditional hot pot is its two-part process that effectively turns one meal into two consecutive ones.

鸡煲和传统火锅的不同之处在于它有两个步骤,实际上是将一顿饭变成连续的两顿饭。

First, a heavily flavoured pot of stir-fried chicken topped with a healthy handful of coriander is served on top of a gas stove to keep warm. Often diners will choose to add other ingredients like fish maw or deep-fried soy rolls to soak up the sauce. Then, once the chicken pieces are finished, broth or water is added to deglaze the pot, which turns the meal into a traditional hot pot. At this point, diners can order other raw hot pot ingredients to share; usual suspects include beef strips, prawns, pork balls and vegetables.

首先,一锅香气十足的炒鸡上面覆盖一层香菜,把锅放在煤气炉上面保温。食客们通常会选择添加其他食材,如鱼肚或油炸大豆卷来吸收酱汁。吃完鸡肉之后,就把肉汤或者水加到锅中去杂,这顿饭就变成了传统的火锅。这时,食客可以点其他生的火锅食材一起吃;通常会点牛柳、虾、猪肉丸子和蔬菜。

The dish’s huge popularity belies its relatively short history, and there is no consensus as to its exact origins. According to Edmund Lam, owner of Hong Kong’s Supreme Restaurant, Hong Kong’s first all-you-can-eat Gai Bo buffet chain, “It was first popularised in Shenzhen and mainland China, with flavours of Sichuan cuisine which are very spicy.” Indeed Yu Jun Restaurant in Shenzhen’s Xiangxi Village claimed to have invented it first in 1994, proudly proclaiming ‘The First Gai Bo’ on their menu.

这道菜广受欢迎,掩盖了其历史相对较短的事实。对于其确切的来源,也没有统一的意见。据香港"最高餐厅"——香港第一家自助式鸡煲连锁店老板埃德蒙·林(Edmund Lam)透露,"鸡煲最初在深圳和中国大陆广受欢迎,是非常辣的四川口味。"深圳向西村的余军餐厅自称在1994年首先发明了鸡煲,自豪地在菜单上宣称"第一家鸡煲"。

Siu Chung Man, owner of Tai Po King Restaurant, believes that he was the first to bring Gai Bo to Hong Kong, in 2002. “It was the age of pork-bone hot pot, but we weren’t doing as well as the others. I remembered the Gai Bo we had in Xiangxi Village in Shenzhen and tried to make it for ourselves to taste. It was quite delicious, and so we starting selling it,” he said. “The sauce from Gai Bo is especially fragrant. It saved our restaurant and we see it as our saviour.”

太哺金餐厅的老板萧仲曼(Siu Chung Man)相信,2002年,他第一个将鸡煲带到香港。"当时是猪骨火锅的时代,但是我们做的不如别人好。我记得在深圳向西村吃过鸡煲,于是试着自己做着尝尝。做的特别好吃,所以我们开始卖鸡煲,"他说。"鸡煲的酱料特别的香。这种酱料拯救了我们餐厅,我们把它看成救星。"

Others like Lam and Jane Chin, owner of popular Jordan Gai Bo restaurant JKJ POT, say the dish pays tribute to ‘Jer Jer Chicken Pot’, a Cantonese dish traditionally served at dai pai dongs, or street hawkers, on roadsides in Hong Kong.

其他人,比如林和珍珍(Jane Chin)(有名的乔丹鸡煲餐厅JKJ POT的老板)说,这道菜是向"啫啫鸡煲"这道在香港大排档或路边售卖的粤菜致敬。

“Also known as ‘Chongqing’ chicken hot pot, [Gai Bo] is just a variation of the Hong Kong ‘Jer Jer Chicken Pot’,” Chin said. “There’s actually no Gai Bo in Chongqing. Hong Kong people gave it the name probably because its spiciness and taste resembles Chongqing’s spicy cuisine. There are less and less street hawkers in Hong Kong nowadays where Jer Jer Chicken Pot used to be very popular especially during winter, when people want to share a piping hot dish. Now, more and more young people go for Gai Bo instead for the similar feeling.”

"鸡煲又名重庆鸡公煲,只是香港"啫啫鸡煲"的一种演变形式,"珍说。"重庆其实没有鸡煲。香港人可能因为其香味和口感与重庆的鸡公煲相似,所以这样命名。如今,香港的街头小贩越来越少,以前这里"啫啫鸡煲"十分流行,特别是在冬季,人们都想分享滚热的菜肴。而现在,越来越多的年轻人去吃鸡煲,寻找这种熟悉的感觉。"

Indeed, the cooking method of Gai Bo is similar to Jer Jer Chicken Pot – dry stir-fried. To get the heavy flavours to penetrate the meat, Gai Bo’s chicken is first marinated overnight in a spice blend that includes Sichuan peppercorn, star anise, cinnamon, angelica, soy sauce and oyster sauce. The marinated meat is then stir-fried in a wok before being served in a clay pot and garnished with fresh coriander. The name ‘jer jer’ is an onomatopoeia signifying ‘wok’s breath’ – the sound the raw meat makes when it hits the hot wok – and the irresistible charred aroma that results is a huge part of both dishes’ appeal.

其实,鸡煲的烹饪方法与"啫啫鸡煲"类似,都是干炒。为了让香味渗透到肉中,鸡煲的鸡肉首先要在四川胡椒、八角、肉桂、当归、酱油和蚝油等混合而成的调料中腌制过夜。腌制过的肉在炒锅内炒制,然后放入煲中,并配上新鲜的香菜。"啫啫"这个名字是锅的响声的拟声词——生肉放入锅里时的响声——而这种不可抗拒的烧焦的香气是这两种菜肴吸引力的一个重要组成部分。

“The trick is to wok-fry the raw chicken,” Chin said. “Some restaurants may first blanch the chicken to speed up the process, but that will result in white, bland and chewy meat that does not really blend well with the sauce.”

"窍门是炒鸡,"珍说。"有些餐馆可能会先把鸡肉焯一下,以加速鸡肉的加工过程,但那会导致鸡肉发白,不易嚼烂,不能入味。"

She explained that hitting the correct spice notes is vital, which is why she sources their Sichuan peppercorn and chilli directly from Chongqing, China – the source of Sichuan cuisine. These help create a sauce that is aromatic and spicy but doesn’t overpower the taste of the chicken.

她解释道,使用合适的香料至关重要,这就是她直接从川菜的源头——中国重庆购买四川胡椒和辣椒的原因。这些有助于她创造出一种香辣的酱料,不会掩盖鸡肉的味道。

Whatever the story behind the dish, today Gai Bo is ubiquitous throughout Hong Kong. Dedicated restaurants have popped up left and right over the last decade with varying recipes and concepts, from classic broths to luxury toppings. There were short-lived variations involving cheese, seafood and purple sweet potatoes, and what originally was just clear chicken broth can now be found as a lobster-based soup or a cocktail of Chinese herbs. A-la-carte Gai Bo restaurants in Hong Kong serve up premium ingredients like fresh seafood or hand-cut beef, but the true crowd-pleasers, with constant crowds of students and families, tend to be buffet-style, all-you-can-eat versions, where diners pay one price for unlimited amount of hot pot ingredients, as well as drinks and desserts.

无论这道菜背后的故事如何,如今鸡煲在整个香港都是无处不在的。过去的十年里,各种专门的餐厅纷纷出现,它们使用不同的食谱和概念,从经典肉汤到奢侈品配料不等。这些演变形式存在的时间并不长,包括奶酪、海鲜、紫薯以及最初只是鸡汤,现在演变成的龙虾底料汤或中草药鸡尾酒。在香港,用菜单点菜的餐厅使用新鲜海鲜和手切牛肉等优质食材,但是真正受人喜爱的、不断有学生和家庭光顾的,往往是自助式的餐厅,在这里,食客支付固定的价格,火锅食材、饮料和甜品无限量供应。

Today, on any night of the week you’ll find Hong Kong locals huddled over a pot of Gai Bo, sharing stories, laughs and beers. Ultimately, everyone has different criteria for their favourite hot pot restaurant, be it the price, the sauce, the chicken or the location. However, if you're in Hong Kong in winter, Gai Bo, much like dim sum or pineapple bun, is definitely something you should make time to experience. My tip? Don’t skip the crispy soy rolls – they soak up the sauce to give you maximum flavour. A must-have at any Gai Bo table.

如今,任何一个晚上,你都能看到香港人围在鸡煲旁边,喝着啤酒,分享故事,笑声不断。重要的是,对于最喜爱的火锅餐厅,在价格、酱料、鸡肉或者餐厅位置等方面,每个人有不同的评判标准。然而,如果冬天你在香港,一定要抽空去吃鸡煲,就像一定要吃点心或菠萝包一样。我的建议?不要错过脆脆的大豆卷——它们可以吸收酱汁,给你最好的美味体验。每个人吃鸡煲都会点这道菜。

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