Soy-sauce meat hung before Shaoxing's first snow
Soy-sauce sausages are air-dried in Shaoxing, Zhejiang province. [Photo/shaoxing.com.cn]
Shaoxing in East China's Zhejiang province witnessed its first snow of the season on Dec 14. Luckily its soy-sauce meat began being air-dried two days earlier. Air-drying is a traditional way to cook Spring Festival dishes.
Residents of Shaoxing have been making soy-sauce duck, pork, and fish since ancient times. The dishes represent the authentic flavors of the region and are popular with locals and tourists.
Senior residents may even tell you that it is soy-sauce meat, not the first snow, that marks the beginning of winter in Shaoxing.
However, it is quite difficult to dry the meat properly.
Snow covers an old town road in Shaoxing, East China's Zhejiang province, on Dec 14. [Photo/shaoxing.com.cn]
Soy-sauce meat cannot be exposed to direct sunshine, as the water inside it must be preserved.
The meat must be stored in wooden containers, as the chemical reaction between the meat and wood will add a special flavor to the meat.
Chinese liquor can also be added based on one's preferences, as it can kill bacteria and improve the meat's texture.