Szechuan cuisine of the eight major schools of China's culinary art, Szechuan cuisine is perhaps the most popular. Originating in Sichuan Province of western China, Szechuan cuisine, known as Chuan Cai in Chinese, enjoys an international reputation for being spicy and flavorful. Yet the highly distinctive pungency is not its only characteristic. In fact, Szechuan cuisine boasts a variety of flavors and different methods of cooking, featuring the taste of hot, sweet, sour, salty, or tongue-numbing.
Szechuan has high humidity and many rainy or overcast days. Hot pepper helps reduce internal dampness, so it was used frequently in dishes, and hot dishes became the norm in Szechuan cuisine. The region's warm, humid climate also necessitates sophisticated food-preservation techniques which include picking, salting, drying and smoking.
Szechuan dishes consist of Chengdu, Chongqing and vegetarian dishes. Masterly used cooking techniques are sauteing, stir-frying without stewing, dry-braising, Pao (soaking in water) and Hui (frying then braising with corn flour sauce). Sichuan cuisine is famous for its distinct and various flavors, the most outstanding ones are fish flavors, pepper powder boiled in oil, strange flavor and sticky-hot.Dishes typical of Sichuan are twice cooked pork, spicy diced chicken , Gonbao Chicken , Ma Po Tofu,Fish Fillets W/ Hot Sauce ,Shredded Pork W/ Garlic Sauce,Mixed Beef With Hot Sauce,Dandan Noodle.
川菜最讲究的就是色香味俱全，且强调浓墨重彩，。川菜即四川地区的菜肴，是中国四大菜系之一，也是最有特色的菜系，民间最大菜系，从高级筵席“三蒸九扣”到大众便餐、民间小吃、家常风味等，菜品繁多，花式新颖，做工精细。川菜烹调讲究品种丰富、味多味美的川菜，所以受到人们的喜爱和推崇同时被冠以“百姓菜”。起源于四川、重庆，以麻、辣、鲜、香为特色。川菜原料多选山珍、江鲜、野蔬和畜禽。善用小炒、干煸、干烧和泡、烩等烹调法。以“味”闻名，号称百菜百味，一菜一格 味型较多，富于变化，以鱼香、红油、怪味、麻辣较为突出。擅长炒、滑、熘、爆、煸、炸、煮、煨等。尤为小煎、小炒、干煸和干烧有其独道之处 川菜的风格朴实而又清新，具有浓厚的乡土气息。著名代表菜品有：鱼香肉丝、回锅肉、麻婆豆腐、水煮鱼、夫妻肺片等等。天下的美食，单论普及程度，川菜是当仁不让的第一名。如同所有能让人无法自拔的事物一样，川菜绝对能将大多数人的胃口毫不费力地俘虏而去。所谓：食在中国，味在四川。