Late-night Snacks in China

2016-11-10 本文来自:《国际人才交流》2016/9 作者:China Daily 分享 |

You’ve already had dinner, and you’re fully aware that after-hours eating is probably not a smart choice. Yet you feel urged, even obliged, to say to your friend at 10pm-ish, “Let’s go get something to eat!”
In China, summer is the season of late-night snacks, or yexiao, with all kinds of barbecue – seafood, chicken wings and stinky tofu – and spicy crayfish dominating the menu.
It’s not fine dining – most of the food is high in fat, and some of the restaurants have dubious hygiene, but that doesn’t stop customers from chowing down.
Apart from sating your appetite for food, late-night snacks in China are also about socializing and relaxing.
“Yexiao should be eaten outside rather than cooked at home,” Qian Maojia, a 31-year-old white-collar worker said, “I feel so relaxed going outside late at night in the summer, in a casual T-shirt, shorts and slippers. It has become a habit of mine, and I believe many people around me in this city spend great summer nights this way.”
This impulse is shared by other places around the world. Night markets are popular in many Asian countries such as South Korea and Thailand. In Western countries, shopping malls close early, often before 6 pm, but restaurants and bars stay open until late to serve those who want to have some midnight munchies or simply hang out with friends.
Take Spain as an example: People there don’t have yexiao, but they traditionally have a very late dinner, usually between 9 pm and midnight, which can be interpreted as a combination of dinner and yexiao. Instead of having a big feast like Chinese people do, Spanish people like to have a lighter dinner. It often includes a small portion of fish, roast chicken or lamb, a salad and white rice.

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