Hotpot, called huoguo, or "firepot" in Chinese is one of Chongqing's claims to fame. In cities across China, one can find hot pot restaurants, but only Chongqing people can really stand a real hot pot, so if you want authenticity, get it when you were in Chongqing.
|Famous Chongqing hotpot with combo soup (Yuanyangguo).||Performance in one of the Chongqing hotpot restaurants.|
Born on the banks of the Yangtze River, hotpot was originally eaten by poor boatmen. Then it spreaded to the rest of China. It's eaten year-round, even in the summer month when the city itself resembles a furnace. People gather around firepot filled with flavorful and nutritious soup base. You have a choice of spicy, pure or combo for the soup. You can dip almost anything you like in your pot, from Chinese mushrooms and squid to tofu and lotus root. The fire dances under the pot, the heavily oiled and spiced soup boils with hazy steam, and the people are bathed in sweat.
Hotpot restaurants can be found all over Chongqing, not to mention all over China, but no one eats hotpot quite like a Chongqing people, the chillies they used are much, much hotter than the ones found in neighbouring Chengdu.
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