A cultural melting pot

By Li Yingxue | CHINA DAILY | Updated: 2022-11-18 08:13
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They can be boiled for a dozen minutes without falling apart but still stay crispy. [Photo provided to China Daily]

The recipe of the dipping sauce is also developed by Lang and her team. They boil their own soybean sauce in their central kitchen so that the flavor is better matched with their soup.

As for the ingredients that diners can choose for their hotpot, Lang says edible seaweed from Hainan is a must, and she recommends shrimps, sea eel and grass carp, as well as fresh beef slices and the mushroom, Sparassis crispa.

With the recipes finalized, the duo opened their first restaurant in January, which soon became a hot spot for both food lovers and internet celebrities. Their second branch opened in July in a shopping mall, and has also become a popular choice for family gatherings.

According to a report on China's hotpot industry development and consumer behavior monitoring in 2022, issued by iiMedia Research, the market size of China's hotpot industry reached 499.8 billion yuan ($70 billion) last year and is expected to reach 668.9 billion yuan in 2025.

The report said that the hotpot market has entered a stage of "white-hot competition" in which restaurateurs have to occupy a niche category or be innovative in their operations.

Lang is confident that dregs vinegar hotpot will earn its market share as more restaurants specializing in the flavor open in Beijing, and more people get to know it.

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