In Shandong丨Grasshopper Sub Shrimp Paste: the Essence of Fresh Shrimps, Sea salt, and Sunshine
In Rongcheng of Weihai City, there is a kind of seafood that can only be served after being marinated, and the longer it is marinated, the more refreshing it tastes.It is the specialty of Jiaodong peninsula, the Grasshopper Sub Shrimp Paste.The paste is a product made from tiny shrimps with salt, which is then fermented and grounded into a thick and sticky texture.
Grasshopper Sub Shrimp Paste has a history of more than 2,000 years. During the Yongzheng Period, the governor of Dengzhou presented it as a local specialty to the imperial court, and the paste was given the title of "Imperial Court Delicacy".In 2009, the production technique of Grasshopper Sub Shrimp Paste was selected intothe list ofthe second batch of Shandong provincial intangible cultural heritage.
The tasty shrimp paste is the essence created with fresh shrimp, sea salt, sunshine, time, and its makers’ ingenuity.It is made from a type of tiny shrimp, the grasshopper sub shrimp, which is gray and translucent in color and less than one centimeter in size.It has the advantage of lowmoisture, no impurities, while having a strong flavor.The grasshopper sub shrimp is stirred with salt and dried for a short time, followed by a period of fermentation. Then the fermented shrimp paste will gradually become sticky and silky, with water getting precipitated.Once the sauce is ready, the next step is to drain the shrimp oil. After separating the shrimp oil from the sauce, the rest is the shrimp paste we are waiting for.The shrimp paste is purple-red in color, sticky in texture, refreshing in smell. It is delicate and has moderate saltiness.
Grasshopper Sub Shrimp Paste is rich in protein, calcium, iron, selenium, vitamin A, and other nutritional elements, which is quite beneficial to the body when consumed in moderation.The shrimp paste can be served as a home-cooked side dish on its own, but it is also an excellent accompaniment to stir-fries, steamed meats, etc. Finished dishes include steamed shrimp paste custard and stir-fried peas with Grasshopper Sub Shrimp Paste. Grasshopper Sub Shrimp Paste not only adds depth and breadth to the flavor of the ingredients, endowing the food with a colorful taste, but also constructs a perfect bridge between different ingredients. With only one sip can the freshness fully spread in one’s mouth – it is a taste that only people living in the seaside can understand.