Oil Tea, one of the favorite foods of Miao, Yao and Dong ethnic people in Guangxi Province, is one of the recommended foods for people traveling in Guilin. Just as the name referred, oil tea is made of oil and tea.
The most famous oil tea drinkers are the Yao people of Gongcheng (a county of Guilin prefecture)., which is also said to enhance the immune system and help them keep warm in winter. For people in Gongcheng county, they can have oil tea during each meal. There is a song to describe the oil tea in Gongcheng. Content of the song can be summarized like this: Eating customs in Gongcheng County is strange. People like eating porridge mixed with oil tea. Oil tea is regarded as the medicine for all illness. Everyone who have drank of it will be full of energy all the time.
♦ How to make oil tea
► Oil tea is prepared by frying tealeaves with garlic, salt, ginger, chili, possibly other ingredients and of course oil (usually peanut oil) in a work.
► Water is then added and the mixture boiled.
► The tea, which is more like a broth, is poured through a wickerwork sieve (or tea strainer).
► The leaves in the strainer may be pounded with a hammer-like wooden pestle to release the flavor. Oil tea has a greeny-gray color and a strong taste.
♦ Manner for drinking oil tea
► Guests who pay a visit to Gongcheng people family may feel their hospitality when drink a cup of oil tea. The first cup of oil tea for guests is sweet. Two eggs will be set in the bowl of each guest. And guest can eat eggs as well as drink oil tea at the same time.
► When Gongcheng people invite you to drink a bow of oil tea, it is better to enjoy it instead of refusing.
► Local people would like to ask guests to drink six bowl of oil tea. When in the fifth bowl, host will put pork in the bowl. When finished the fifth one, you can tell the host that you are full. At this time, hostess will ask you to have one more bowl. While when you finish the sixth one and say that you are full, they will finish serving oil tea to you any more.
► If you could not finish the fifth bowl of oil tea, you can put your chopstick across on the bowl. This means you are really full.
► If you do not like the hot taste, it is better to not eat the pepper in the bowl. Because host will think you like to eat pepper if you eat it when you drink oil tea.