Flavorful Origins – a 40-part Mandarin-language TV documentary series, traversing the culinary secrets of China and the various cooking techniques and cuisines with native Asian ingredients from the first season – Chaoshan & the second season – Yunnan, and Gansu – season 3 regions.
The 1st season was released on the 11th of February 2019, on Netflix streaming. The 2nd season of Flavorful Origins was released on Netflix on the 30th of October 2019. Season 3 was released on the 20th of November 2020.
Board on a delightful journey through the culinary traditions of China and reveal the stories of the people who create and cherish its dishes.
How about Season 1 and Season 2?
As with the first two seasons of Flavorful Origins which centered on the Yunnan and Chaoshan regions of China the third part of the show takes on a region of the massive country that’s unclear to most people outside of the country and perhaps a lot of people inside of it: Gansu.
Also, as in the initial two seasons, the 11-15 minute episodes eschew profiles and interviews and just show the food centering on one key ingredient per episode and the dishes that are made with that ingredient.
The primary episode is about mutton which is meat from a sheep that is within 1-3 years old. It defines what needs to be done to the meat to tenderize it, based on the age of the sheep that it came from.
One of the means we see is the rendering of the fat which is cooled until it is hard and then later used to seal in the juices of lamb on skewers. In a remote region, the mutton is cooked in a lamb’s tripe – in other terms, its stomach is washed and used as a bag for the mutton which will be cooked by hot rocks that are stored inside. It steams and grills at the same time cooking in its juices.
Episode 2 talks about the “Lanzhou lily” whose bulb is prudently cultivated then harvested and eaten in the autumn months.
Whether grilled on their own or used as a topping in salads or dishes. The lily bulb has a great sugar content making it the only sweet lily on the planet. The rest two episodes Netflix sent to critics review the dishes containing sheep offal and flaxseed.