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As Chinese ‘Crepe’ Catches On Abroad, a Fight to Preserve Its Soul

来源:纽约时报    2018-05-30 01:29

        HONG KONG — When is a pancake not a pancake?        香港——在什么情况下,煎饼不是煎饼?
        The unassuming jianbing, an eggy street-food snack from China that resembles a French crepe, is increasingly trendy abroad — a symbol of Beijing’s growing soft power. It even inspired the creation of a superhero character in a hit Chinese comedy, “Pancake Man.”
        But in the Chinese city of Tianjin, a local trade association sees the snack’s soaring popularity — and variety — as a threat. Over the weekend, it imposed rules that attempt to standardize the jianbing, apparently as a way of saving the soul of northern China’s quintessential street food.        但在中国天津,当地的一个行业协会认为,煎饼越来越流行且种类越来越多是一种威胁。周末,它出台了一系列规定,试图将煎饼标准化。这似乎是为了拯救这款典型的北方街头小吃的灵魂。
        The rules have prompted head-scratching among Chinese eaters, and even some metaphysical speculation about what makes a jianbing in the first place.        新规令中国食客感到不解,甚至引发了一些关于煎饼起源的形而上的推测。
        The rules say that Tianjin’s jianbing vendors should hew to a fixed recipe and a precise pancake-diameter range of 15 to 17.7 inches, according to photographs of the rules that were posted online by Chinese state media outlets. The rules also say that a jianbing should be served in packaging that lists its expiration date and the name, address and phone number of its creator.        从中国官方媒体机构发在网上的照片来看,相关规定要求天津的煎饼摊贩采用固定的配方和严格的煎饼尺寸,即直径在38至45厘米之间。规定还要求煎饼有包装,且包装上要注明保质期和加工方的姓名、地址和电话号码。
        Song Guanming, the chairman of the Tianjin Catering Industry Association’s jianbing branch, told local news outlets that the rules would not be strictly enforced. But he also said the association would establish model jianbing stands to help raise industry standards and boost the city’s pancake-slinging reputation.        天津市餐饮行业协会煎饼馃子分会会长宋冠鸣告诉当地新闻媒体,这些规定不会强制执行。但他也表示,该协会将设立煎饼示范摊位,以便帮助提高行业标准,提升该市摊煎饼的声誉。
        “As we make the ingredients and cooking method public, we guarantee that the costs of jianbing will not increase, the flavors will be authentically delicious and business will definitely improve, if practitioners follow the standard,” Mr. Song was quoted as saying.        “但把煎饼馃子技术和配方公开告诉大家后,只要从业者遵从标准,成本不会增加,味道正宗好吃,生意肯定会更好,”宋冠鸣说。
        But on Sina Weibo, a Twitter-like social media platform, some said that part of the fun of eating jianbing was that its flavor varies by vendor.        但在类似于Twitter的社交媒体平台新浪微博上,有人说吃煎饼的乐趣部分就在于它的味道因摊贩而异。
        “The nonstandard pancakes are the ones I like eating,” one user wrote.        “我就是喜欢吃不标准的,”一名用户写道。
        “Everyone’s tastes are different,” another wrote. “Is there even a need to standardize?”        “每个人的口味都不一样,”另一名用户写道。“有必要标准化吗?”
        Several vendors in Tianjin told a local newspaper that they were unsure whether to follow the new rules. One said that he viewed them as an affront to his art.        天津的几名摊贩对当地的一家报纸表示,他们不确定要不要遵守新规定。其中一人说,他认为新规定是对他手艺的侮辱。
        “We’ve always used other ingredients,” the vendor said, referring to a rule that declares mung bean batter the city’s official jianbing base.        “我们制作的煎饼馃子还加入了其他的食品,”这名摊贩提到其中一条规定时说,这条规定宣布绿豆面是正规天津煎饼的主要原料。
        The jianbing rules were first reported on in English by The South China Morning Post.        《南华早报》(The South China Morning Post)最早用英语报道了有关煎饼的规定。
        Xinhua, a state-run Chinese news agency, says that the jianbing’s origins lie in Tianjin, Beijing and Shandong Province. Mr. Song of the catering industry association has said that one of the snack’s two primary strains, the jianbing guozi, has a 600-year history in Tianjin.        中国官方通讯社新华社报道称,煎饼起源于天津、北京和山东。前述天津市餐饮行业协会煎饼馃子分会会长宋冠鸣表示,煎饼主要分两种,其中之一煎饼馃子在天津有600年的历史。, another state-run news outlet, reported that brick murals and pottery remains show that the Chinese could have been rolling thin pancakes on flat, heated griddles for about five thousand years.        中国另一家官方新闻机构人民网报道说,砖画和流传下来的陶器显示,中国人在平整的、经过加热的鏊子上摊煎饼的历史有大约五千年。
        According to Mr. Bing, a jianbing business in New York, legend has it that the snack was invented by a third-century official in Shandong Province who needed to feed an army of wok-less soldiers. The company says that the official’s bright idea — cooking on a copper griddle — drove his army to victory “on a tummy full of bings.”        据纽约的煎饼店“老金煎饼”(Mr. Bing)称,传说煎饼是三世纪时山东省的一名官员发明的。这名官员要养活一支没有炒锅的军队。“老金煎饼”称,这名官员想到了一个好办法——在铜鏊子上做饭——帮他的军队“用饼填饱了肚子”,取得了胜利。
        While the original jianbing is still hugely popular as a street snack, gentrified versions can now be found from Beijing to Brooklyn. It now comes with a quirky range of toppings, complementing the standard ingredients of eggs, scallions, cilantro, chili and sweet sauce and a deep-fried dough wafer.        尽管老式煎饼仍是一款大受欢迎的街头小吃,但现在从北京到布鲁克林,都能找到被中产阶级化了的煎饼。现在除了鸡蛋、葱、香菜、甜辣酱和油炸薄脆这些标准配料外,还出现了一系列稀奇古怪的配料。
        In New York, for example, Mr. Bing serves bings à la kimchi. And in Hong Kong, the semiautonomous southern Chinese city, the bubble-tea shop ThirsTea offers them with condensed milk and peanut butter.        比如在纽约,“老金煎饼”有一款泡菜煎饼。在中国南方实行半自治的城市香港,珍珠奶茶店喝·茶(ThirsTea)将煎饼与炼乳和花生酱结合在了一起。
        Fuchsia Dunlop, a London-based cook and food writer who specializes in Chinese cuisine, said that as people in China become more interested in food as a marker of cultural heritage, culinary associations see an opportunity to lure tourists and are moving in some cases to enforce allegiance to traditional recipes.        常住伦敦的邓扶霞(Fuchsia Dunlop)是一名专门研究中国饮食的厨师兼美食作家。她说,随着中国民众对食物作为文化遗产标志的兴趣增加,烹饪协会看到了吸引游客的机会,并且在一些事例中,它们正在采取行动,强迫人们忠于传统做法。
        China, long a haven for piracy and counterfeiters, has worked hard to strengthen its intellectual property laws in recent years. Chinese leaders want its companies to invest in new technologies and new brands — investments that could be easily undermined by copycats.        中国长期是盗版和造假者的天堂。近年来,中国努力加强知识产权法律。中国领导人希望中国公司投资新技术和新品牌——这些投资容易遭到山寨产品的破坏。
        China has also moved to open more courts to hear intellectual property cases and has increased penalties. Foreign brands, such as New Balance sneakers and Michael Jordan, the basketball star, have won high-profile infringement cases in recent years.        中国还着手设立了更多审理知识产权案件的法庭,并加大了处罚力度。近年来,新百伦(New Balance)运动鞋和篮球明星迈克尔·乔丹(Michael Jordan)等外国品牌在备受瞩目的侵权案件中胜诉。
        But Ms. Dunlop said there was now a debate in China about whether efforts to strictly preserve culinary heritage were going a bit too far. “It’s a living form of culture that is always changing and being influenced,” she said by telephone from the western province of Sichuan.        但邓扶霞说,中国现在围绕严格保护餐饮遗产的行动是不是有点过分出现了争论。“它是一种活的文化形式,永远都在变化,被其他因素影响,”身在中国西部四川省的她在电话里说。
        Ms. Dunlop pointed, as examples of evolving culinary heritage, to pizza, which came from Italy and is now beloved by Americans, and to Sichuan’s regional cuisine, which is world-famous for an ingredient — the chili pepper — that hails from the Americas.        邓扶霞以披萨和川菜为例,证明饮食遗产在不断演变。披萨发源于意大利,现在深受美国民众的喜爱,川菜则凭借原产自美洲的食材辣椒而闻名于世。

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