Macau Cuisine

Publish Time:2018-07-12 10:19:55Source:Macao Government Tourism Office

【Introduction】:Gastronomy has all along been a distinctive element of our culture of over 400 years of east-meets-west exchanges. Macao cherishes this new title as a Creative City of Gastronomy and will make good use of it to help transform the city into a world centre of tourism and leisure.

Macanese Cuisine

Macanese cuisine is cooked with many ingredients that recall the unique history of Macao and its Portuguese maritime culture. During the 16th and 17th Century, Portugal energetically established a sea route to the East, paving the way for merchants engaged in the spice trade in Africa, India and the coast of Malacca, bringing exotic spices and food cultures to Macao. In addition, many Portuguese married local Chinese in Macao and inhabitants from the above-mentioned regions. Thus, different foreign and Chinese ingredients and cooking styles were gradually incorporated into traditional Portuguese dishes cooked by Macanese families over the past centuries.

Based on Portuguese cuisine, these spices and ingredients from Africa, Southeast Asia and India - including curry, coconut milk, cloves and cinnamon - are combined using Chinese culinary skills in a wonderful potpourri of tastes and aromas, giving birth to the uniquely delicious Macanese cuisine of today. Signature dishes most famously include “Galinha à Africana” (African chicken) and Macanese Chilli Shrimps. Macanese Gastronomy was inscribed on the Macao Intangible Cultural Heritage List in 2012.

Chinese Cuisine

Macao features a wide variety of food from most Mainland provinces. Peking duck is the highlight of Peking cuisine, while steamed buns with minced pork filling, wontons and freshwater hairy crabs are renowned Shanghainese dishes. Lovers of spicy food can also enjoy signature Sichuan soups and hotpots in Macao.

When it comes to ‘Yum Cha’ (literally ‘drink tea’) devotees are spoilt for choice, with many hotels and restaurants in Macao serving a cornucopia of ‘Dim Sum’ specialties such as ‘Har Gau’ (steamed dumplings stuffed with shrimp), ‘Shiu Mai’ (steamed dumplings stuffed with pork and shrimp) and Tsun Guen (Fried rolls of shrimp and vegetables). Other famous Guangdong dishes include roasted meats, seafood and other delicate dishes. ‘Dim Sum’ is commonly accompanied by tea, particularly jasmine (‘Heong pin cha’) or red tea (‘Pou lei’).

International Cuisine and Others

Macao is an excellent choice for sampling international cuisine. Major hotels and upscale malls offer a diverse array of cuisines, often featuring buffets, food court, Michelin star restaurants, and international dishes prepared by world-class chefs.

Macao offers Japanese cuisine, Korean barbecue, and specialties from the United States, France, Italy, India as well as from Southeast Asia. The Rua de Abreu Nunes – also known as ‘Thailand Street’ – houses many Thai restaurants. Curry, boiled fish, and Tom Yum Goong soup are just some of Thailand’s tantalizing cuisine choices on offer here. The Rotunda de Carlos da Maia (Three Lamps District) has become a magnet for a number of overseas Chinese from Myanmar over the years, who have brought the secrets of Myanmar cuisine to Macao with them, while Rua do Cunha in Taipa and Senado Square on the Macao Peninsula also enjoy a ‘Food Street’ reputation. Visitors can easily find a diversity of restaurants and eateries in streets and squares throughout this cosmopolitan city.

Some ‘must-try’ items are found in street stalls, with Pastéis de Nata (Portuguese egg tarts) and ‘pork chop buns’ established favorites of Hong Kong and Taiwanese visitors.

Rua de S. Paulo, Avenida de Almeida Ribeiro (popularly-known as ‘San Ma Lo’), Rua da Felicidade, Travessa do Auto Novo near Senado Square and Rua do Cunha in Taipa Village are the places to find local snacks, packed with shops selling Macao delicacies like almond cookies, egg rolls, peanut candies, roasted sliced meat and many other local specialties. Some of the snacks are cooked right in front of you – and all make excellent gifts for your nearest and dearest.

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