Zeng Gao is an unique and traditional snack in Xian area. Except Lingpi, Roujiamo and Yangroupaomo, it’s definitely another star on the list of Xian Food or What-to-eat-in-Xian. It is more like a dessert, which uses glutinous rice and red jujube as raw materials, sometimes also adding red kidney beans, azuki beans, and honey-preserved date to enrich the flavor. Zeng Gao popularizes in not only Xian but also Guanzhong area of Shannxi province, possibly out of the reason that it is easily cooked but tastes really special. In 2007, a Chinese TV series backgrounded by the story of the richest woman in Shannxi during Qing dynasty has completely made a hit, thus putting Zeng Gao to a nationwide fame.
Zeng Gao has a history of hundreds years. It is cooked by way of steaming when the ingredients are mixed up in a special container named Zeng, hence the name of it. Actually people can make Zeng Gao at their own home because it doesn’t have to be steamed in this kind of container, ordinary steam pot is also ok, just a little bit difference of flavor.
Two sought-after Zeng Gao recommendations in Xian:
Dongnanya(Southeast Asia) Zeng Gao: The store is small but is always crowded with customers. It locates at the crossroad of Xiyangshi Street and North Guangjijie Street. It is in Muslim Quarter.
Pangzi(Fatty) Zeng Gao: The owner runs business started from his elder generation. He doesn’t open a store, only selling Zeng Gao in a tricycle or something like that. However, all the Zeng Gao will be sold out after 8am. People always find him in the early morning at the exit of Qiaozikou Street, also a part of Muslim Quarter.