Chinese Influence On South-East Asian Cuisine
South East Asia measures nearly two million square miles across, holds a population of over 600 million people and includes 10 different countries. Yet if you look at the noodle soups of Vietnam or the fried rice found in Singapore, there’s one thing that these cuisines all share – influences from Chinese culture, something that chefs at School of Wok make it their job to know a lot about.
This influence of Chinese culture in no way means that each country and region does not possess it’s own unique traditions and flavours with their own cuisine, but it’s undeniable that you can see elements of Chinese flavours and techniques wherever you look.ok.
Woks, which originated from the Canton region of China, are the most common and versatile of the cooking utensils used across SE Asia, in which foods can be stir-fried, steamed, deep-fried, braised or even smoked. In fact, the Chinese are said that have brought their stir-frying methods to the rest of the continent as merchants travelled across the region for thousands of years.
As for the food of SE Asia, rice and noodles, now fundamental ingredients across the region, were originally Chinese foods that later found their way into kitchens further south. These ingredients are now considered to be staples across the whole region, and take their place amongst national dishes of many SE Asian countries – such as Vietnam (Pho), Thailand (Pad Thai) and Malaysia (Nasi Lemak).
Furthermore, the cuisines of the South East would be completely different without soy sauce, which was invented in China sometime between the third and fifth centuries. The influence of Chinese culture on the rest of SE Asia can be plainly seen through the use of this indispensable condiment with the majority of meals using it in one way or another.
More recently as example of Chinese influence, dim sum, unarguably a Chinese invention, has spread across the continent with steamed buns and boiled dumplings being served across the region, updated with each country’s individual twist.
Living in a multicultural city like London more and more the food industry has an obligation to represent cultures from a variety of different influences. School of Wok, a recreational cookery school in Covent Garden, has made it’s mission to represent a variety of Asian cuisines and heritage. As well as a number of Chinese cookery courses and Dim Sum courses, School of Wok teaches a host of different cuisines from across South East Asia, highlighting each countries key ingredients and unique flavours. Whether it’s Thai cooking classes, tips about Thai food or think Malaysian cooking lessons, School of Wok specialises in a variety of Asian cuisines, cooking techniques and cultures.
Schoolofwok, a leading cookery school in London, offers a variety of Chinese Cookery Courses. We also provide chef Courses and Thai Cooking Lessons. If you want to join cooking classes you can directly visit our site: