In China, much of what people eat has a long history behind them. For example, Chinese teas have a legend attached to them; a legend that dates as far back as 500 years ago.
Chinese cuisine is rooted deep in the nation’s cultural history. Table manners and proper dining etiquette in Chinese homes are very important even today. Even the way people eat displays a great deal of respect for utensils and food.
The rule of thumb when it comes to Chinese food etiquette is that senior members are served first. The best and finest food is plated up beautifully before being offered to the elders. In ancient times, the peasantry could not afford to feed themselves. But even with shallow pockets, the common people tried their best to support their family, particularly the elderly members.
As far back as the 16th century, the Chinese followed a technique of arranging the food on the table. The main courses were placed in the middle, surrounded by small bowls of supporting dishes. Today, the Chinese follow more or less the same pattern, but a bit of decoration has entered the dining culture, with fancy napkins, plates, and bowls being added to the dinner table.
One thing that has remained constant throughout the years, is the fact that the Chinese people celebrate one’s birthday by eating a plate of noodles! Noodles are a symbol of longevity, so the Chinese rarely celebrate a birthday without a variety of noodle-based dishes.
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