'Wufangzhai' zongzi-making skills
"Wufangzhai" is renowned as the "King of Zongzi" in regions south of the Yangtze River, with its products featuring a strong fragrance, fatty but not greasy flavor, and soft and waxy texture.
The ingredients for Wufangzhai zongzi are carefully selected: the glutinous rice is supplied by local rice farmers, the meat is taken from the back legs of pigs, only roosters are used for the poultry, the sweetened bean paste is made from first-class red beans, the reed leaves come from Anhui and Jiangxi provinces, and the soy sauce, salt and wine are all tailor-made.
Wufangzhai zongzi has a unique preparation and boiling method.
Taking the meat stuffing for example. The meat is cut into cubes according to the texture. They are then placed into a basin with a small amount of salt, white sugar, and wine. The meat is then hand-stirred and rubbed until small white bubbles appear. The meat tastes fragrant and tender after boiling.
The rice is also washed in a special way, that is, quick wash and no hand stirring for last wash. By doing so, the rice absorbs only a small amount of water, allowing it to absorb more soy sauce later on.
Unlike standard boiling methods, Wufangzhai zongzi is placed into a boiling pot, which preserves the zongzi's original taste. In the old days, zongzi was boiled by mulberry wood for three and half hours.
The meat-stuffed zongzi made with the above methods can be easily divided into four even pieces by a chopstick, each with fat-not-greasy meat.
Wufangzhai zongzi enjoys a history of nearly 100 years. Thanks to its technical innovation, Wufangzhai has been able to produce more than 100 million zongzi each year with 100 different varieties since 2003.
In 2010, Wufangzhai zongzi-making was included as a national-level intangible cultural heritage.
"Wufangzhai" zongzi features a strong fragrance, fatty but not greasy flavor, and soft and waxy texture. [Photo/WeChat account: jxfabu]