Kunming dishes are representative of Dian cuisine, which combines the cooking styles of cities and nationalities in the Yunnan Province. Kunming’s high humidity and mild temperatures means there is an abundance of fruits and vegetables year-round for local cuisine. Additionally, there are numerous snack options in high streets and back lanes.
The unique delicacies from Kunming are famous throughout China, especially the fresh wild mushrooms. There is a family of edible wild mushrooms of more than 200 varieties in the region. Some Dian cuisine recommendations include the following:
Steaming-Pot Chicken (Qiguo Ji)
This dish is a simple, tasty dish prepared by steaming chicken in a pot with a hollow tube center. To make it, place chicken, ginger, a shallot, pepper and salt in the pot and steam for about four hours.
Braised Jizong (mushroom) in Soy Sauce (Hongshao Jizong)
The chicken-like taste of Jizong is popular with gourmands. Braised Jizong in Soy Sauce is prepared this way: Wash Jizong and dry by airing; cut it into pieces. Next chop chili and tenderloin pieces. Wrap tenderloin and Jizong pieces in egg white, starch and salt mixture; fry in hot oil. Finally, braise the Jizong and tenderloin pieces with garlic, ginger and shallot. Drizzle sesame oil on a plate, place braised pieces on oil.
Bittern Duck ( Lu Ya)
The dish is a first choice among tourists. After choosing ducks from Dianchi Lake and cooking them the resulting dish is golden with a soft flavor that, according to locals, encourages good health.
Across Bridge Rice Noodle (Yunnan Guoqiao Mixian)
Across Bridge Rice Noodle†(Yunnan Guoqiao Mixian) is a local specialty. It comes in three parts: a bowl of extremely hot chicken broth, various slices of meat, including chicken, fish, and meat up to nine varieties, with various seasonings and rice noodles.
Xuanwei Ham (Xuanwei Huotui)
Yunnanís ham is one of the three famous hams in China. Interestingly, it’s the main ingredient in many local dishes, and can be stored for long periods of time. Offered in most local restaurants, ham preparation includes baking, salting, pestle, warming, and freezing.
Modern Cake (Modeng Baba)
Made of flour, corn powder, sticky rice, lard, sesame and meat, Baba is popular in Yunnan. Pioneered by two sisters who make sweet and tasteful Baba that people enjoy, modern Baba has a crisp exterior, soft interior and is eaten with savory cream.
Besides Modeng Baba, other snacks include Shao Mai (steamed dumpling with the dough gathered at the top), Chou Doufu (bean curd), Wandou Fen (bean jelly), and Jicai Jiao (shepherd’s-purse dumpling).
Traditional Food and Drink
Kunming Tourist Board