“A Bite of China” 《舌尖上的中国》is a 7-episode documentary series by CCTV documentary channel which gives a grand introduction to Chinese food. “A Bite of China” has opened a window allowing TV audiences at home and abroad to learn about Chinese food and its culture with HD images from a human perspective. (transcript of the programme in Chinese 中文解说词)
E01 Gift of the Nature 《自然的馈赠》
There are a large number of food raw materials within China’s vast territory. People have been collecting, picking, digging and catching these gifts of the nature all the year round.
In the pine and oak forest of Shangri-La, Dolma is looking for a wizard-like food – pine mushroom (松茸 matsutake). The pine mushroom can only keep fresh for just two days, business people process pine mushroom with the fastest speed, so that it will appear in Tokyo market within 24 hours after been picked up.
Even judged by modern standards, Nuodeng salt (诺邓井盐) is still the best. Although salt production has stopped in this village, we still believe that the Nuodeng salt is the precious gift from the nature.
E02 Story of the Staple Foods 《主食的故事》
Chinese cuisine is unique. A pot of rice, a steamed bread or those ever-changing delicate staple foods are all the products of people’s hard work and accumulated experience.
Almost all Chinese people know the common sense that people in the North like to eat cooked wheaten food, while people in the South are inseparable from the rice, all because of the agricultural pattern formed two thousand years ago.
E03 Inspiration of the Conversion 转化的灵感
Flavour is the most important part of eating philosophy. The Chinese never limit themselves to a tasteless food list and they have been pursuing inspiration of the conversion with their continuing tries and understanding of foods.
Chinese people believe that water can nourish people’s spirituality and consciousness. This is similar to the creation of tofu which is shaped by water. An unspeakable link between the two.
E04 The Taste of Time 时间的味道
We have manifold modern technologies to preserve food, however, old methods (salting, air drying, etc) are still have its incomparable charm.
E05 Secret of the Kitchen 厨房的秘密
The secret of kitchen is the art of fire and water, is the harmonious relationship between people and all creatures. The land serves human selflessly, people maintain a common passion for delicious food, so the ultimate secret of the kitchen – is no secret.
E06 harmonious proportion of flavours 五味的调和
The harmony of flavors and the state of balance are not only the perfect state constantly dreamed by generations of Chinese chef and doctors, but also the ideal state pursued by Chinese in relation with other people and the outside world.
E07 Our green field 我们的田野
People in different regions of China use their wisdom to get natural, rustic and delicious food. They are closely tied to the land and grateful for the blessing of nature. Even when they are working hard at farming, they still wholeheartedly admire the heaven.
E08 A bite of Conscience 抉心自食 可知其味 parody
When the power of chemistry meets the tremendous creativity of Chinese food industry, the achievement is beyond anyone’s wildest guess.