Taizhou Dried Tofu Shreds, also known as Taizhou five-flavored tofu shreds, is a traditional Taizhou snack with a history spanning more than 200 years. According to legend, this morning tea, is the Qing Dynasty Taizhou city near the east gate of a vegetarian restaurant called “Zhezheju” introduced. According to legend, this restaurant has a chef surnamed Peng, earlier was a large salt merchant’s executive cook. The salt merchant is vegetarian all year long, so the chef made him a morning tea mixed with dried tofu shreds. Later, the salt merchant moved his family west to Yangzhou, Chef Peng refused to go with them, so he went to the “Zhezheju” to help the cook, and immediately launched his masterpiece mixed dried tofu shreds, which was sold in the morning market in the teahouse. In Taizhou, the first time this morning tea came into the market, there was an immediate buzz throughout the city, and everyone wanted to buy it. So, for a while, Taizhou people had to go to the Zhezheju in order to taste this dried tofu shreds. Over time, people began using “Zhezheju” as a pronoun to refer to being too stubborn and inactive or abbreviated as “Zhe Zhi”. Local chronicles mention that restaurants in Taizhou began making Dried beancurd threads with dried tofu during the rule of Emperor Kangxi in the Qing Dynasty. Yuan Mu once described the process in his “Suiyuan Food List”: “Cut the dried tofu very finely, and mix it with shrimp seeds and shrimp oil (soy sauce).”

Since dried tofu shreds is nutritious, tasty and light, it is very popular among customers. Nowadays, tourists visiting Taizhou often order a plate of “hot shredded tofu”. At this point, if you are seated, you may have seen the dried shreds cut, as the waiter pours the mixture of small milled sesame oil and the finest soy sauce over the dried shreds and then shouts, “A dried shred……”. Diners lightly shake the sleeves, a chopstick entrance, often frowning neck, the five senses together, and suddenly a “good” word echoes, this is a common scene in Taizhou morning tea house. Taizhou dried tofu shreds is inexpensive and good in quality, the selected raw materials and ingredients are green health, nutritious, and therefore popular and loved by people from all walks of life. Visitors to Taizhou are lucky to have Taizhou dried tofu shreds, and before they leave, they have to pack up Taizhou dried tofu shreds and ingredients for their friends and relatives to share. Now, the dried tofu shreds has not only become a special dish in Taizhou restaurants of all sizes, but also been grandly introduced in many big restaurants in Beijing, Shanghai, Nanjing, Hangzhou and other places, becoming a beautiful signboard to show the food culture and local customs of Taizhou.

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