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Sichuan hotpot chuanchuan by Jimmy Lee

Wutou Chuanchuan Hotpot

Post by Chiefeater Jimmy Lee

China is open for foreign tourists and visitors again after over two long years of lockdown. This time, I'm in the Chengdu suburbs at Wutou Chuanchuan (屋头串串) having 串串 or chuànchuàn. This is a variation of the traditional Sichuan hotpot dish. The big pot of boiling meat stock loaded with plenty of Sichuan peppercorn, dried chilies and a generous layer of chili oil remains the same.

What's different is the use of skewers to hold small chunks of meat and vegetables, instead of stuff being thrown in together in a typical hot pot dish. It makes it easier for diners to pick out the choice bits they selected. Those bits are also cooked for a shorter time, so you can avoid getting overcooked chunks of meat and soggy vegetables. Think of it as a really spicy fondue.

I'm a big fan of organ meats like intestines, lungs, tripe and skin from various animals cooked in the mindnumbingly spicy broth. Yes, once the broth gets boiling, it imparts a ma la flavor that numbs your tongue and short-circuits your brain. A cold local beer goes along very well with this.

As per local style, I also make a dipping sauce with canola oil, plenty of garlic and chopped birds-eye chillies, coriander, oyster sauce and pickled radish chunks. If you're a fan of bold and sometimes over-the-top flavors, consider Sichuan cuisine heavensent.

What makes hot pot so hot?

Sichuan hot pot is known for its ma la flavor, which means numbing and spicy. It's a combination of the capsaicin from dried chili peppers and chili oil and the numbing effect of Sichuan peppercorns. Sichuan hot pot is a popular dish in China and abroad, especially in cold weather.

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Prices in RM
RM20 - RM50 per pax


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