The traditional Chinese food culture of the Chinese nation for thousands of years blending with the Western food culture has contributed to Harbin's unique catering culture, i.e. Harbin flavor, with its characteristics summed up as "Delicacy Revealed in Simplicity and Essence Contained in Roughness".
Northeastern Stews: Influenced by the Manchu, northeasterners love stews. The so called "Eight Stews" include Stewed Chicken with Mushroom, Stewed Spare Ribs with Green Beans, Stewed Pork with Vermicelli, Stewed Catfish with Eggplant, Demoli Stewed Fresh Fish, and Stewed Beef with Tomato. Northeastern stews are easy to cook, delicious, affordable and widely appealing.
White Pork and Black Pudding: A traditional delicacy of Manchu, also the most popular local dish among the urban and rural people in Northeast China, featuring mouthfuls of meaty flavor, tender but not greasy, alternating red and white and appealing color.
Fried Pork with Pickled Cabbage and Vermicelli: A local flavor dish in Northeast China, with pickled vegetables made of fresh cabbage, tasting sour, crispy, tender and appetizing, vermicelli made of refined potato flour, transparent and flexible, white and bright; streaky pork with alternating red lean and white fat, really tempting.
Frozen Persimmons and Pears: In winter, persimmons and pears frozen as hard as steel balls and discuses are in season. People can nibble at them slowly or gobble them down after putting them in cold water to remove their ice crusts, enjoying a quite different cool and sweet feeling.
Frozen Dessert: A fast selling food in a cold drink store throughout the years, made of milk, egg white, coffee, rock candy, characterized by various shapes, delicate styles, rich nutrients and a sweet taste. The colder the food is, the more Harbin people feel like eating, which makes many non-local guests flabbergasted.
Candied Haw: A fast selling food in Harbin in winter, found on the food vending stands or sold by small vendors wandering about the streets. The sugar-coated haws are sweet and crisp, good on the stomach, able to neutralize the sickliness of grease or rich foods, and dispel the effects of alcohol. All tourists like them and are willing to taste them to experience a memorable sour and cool feeling.
Sausage: European-style sausage with Russian flavor. In 1913, a craftsman called "Ajinbis" spread techniques for making sausage of different varieties, including sausage, dry sausage, braised pork with pine nut and tea sausage, to China. The sausage smoked with a traditional log-based smoking process is neither too salty nor too flat, oily but not greasy, soft and palatable, with tangy smoky aroma and bright color, leaving a lingering aftertaste in the mouth. It is a perfect convenience food for all ages to carry during travelling, represented by Harbin Roulian Sausage, Churin Lidaosi Sausage and old Harbin Sausage.
"Khleb" Bread: "One Big Strange Lid-Shaped Specialty in Harbin", pronounced as "dà liě ba", with a diameter of over 25cm, weighing about 2.5kg each, deeply favored by people due to its charcoal roast technique and special taste, best-known kind being the big bread produced by Harbin Churin Group Joint Stock Co., Ltd. The bread has a history of over 90 years, with a long shelf life, which is easy to carry, attracting people waiting in line to buy it every day.
"Shayike" Bread: With flour, hops and salt as the main raw material, baked in the miscellaneous hardwood oven, with bright thin crust and special flavor with caramel smell, soft, palatable and easy to digest, able to be served with dishes of various kinds, without affecting its unique flavor. It is popular sugar-free staple bread and also one of the specialties of Harbin.