NEW SURVEY REVEALS WE'RE STIR FRY CRAZY
We're a nation of stir-fry lovers, according to an eve of Chinese New Year poll by Chinese food experts AMOY.
In the kitchen, stir frying was the top cooking method we feel comfortable with (30%), beating the microwave into second place (20%), followed by roasting (18%), grilling (17%) and boiling - just 7%.
The survey also shows that it is women who are most confident in the kitchen, with men resorting to the microwave or grill for their quick meal solutions.
Three out of five people say that Chinese is their favourite food and speed and convenience have led to its popularity. Oriental food narrowly beat the traditional roast (23%), Italian (19%), Indian (18%) and fish and chips (10%) but with one in two households owning a wok, the Chinese food sector grew by 6% in volume in 1999, led by noodles and stir-fry sauces (Nielsen 25.12.99).
However whilst we have a taste for the Orient, we do not always know that certain dishes were created for Western tastes - 64% wrongly believe that Chop Suey originates from China, with 57% believing that Pork Chow Mein is authentic (57%).
- Other findings reveal
Our favourite dishes are associated with our personality:
* A Chinese meal - popular with romantics
* A roast and all the trimmings - signifies traditional British reservation
* Italian food - chosen by those who say they are caring
* An Indian curry - eaten by impulsive types
* Fish and chips - a traditionalist's choice
- For women, the most popular celebrity that they would choose to spend Chinese New Year with is Sean Connery (the choice of 30%), but men would opt for Denise Van Outen (27%)
- Only 4% of those surveyed would choose to share their Chinese New Year with Tony Blair. When asked to suggest a dish, almost one in three would opt to serve him beef in black bean sauce, which is symbolically associated in Chinese philosophy with masculinity and assertiveness
- Eating Chinese food is seen as a social occasion with 38% choosing to go to a Chinese restaurant for a celebration, while Indian food is associated with a fun night out with friends (25%) and a meal out at an English steak house is a family occasion (41%)
- 23% of people would cook their partner a Chinese stir-fry if they wanted to prepare a quick but impressive meal and prawns was the top food to put them in a romantic mood (traditionally considered an aphrodisiac)
THE WISDOM OF EATING
Terry Tan, chef and writer on Chinese cuisine, commented: "Although Mexican, Thai and many other cuisines have gained in popularity in recent years, Chinese food remains hugely p and the first choice for many. It is not surprising that its ease and speed of preparation, convenience and association with healthy eating, make it popular," he said.
Note to Editors:
1. Copies of the AMOY Chinese Foods Survey available on request. AMOY's products include the Straight to Wok range of freshly prepared, authentic Chinese vegetables, authentic stir-fry sauces and soft, ready to use noodles - ideal for the 93% of people in the survey who had little confidence in boiling food.
2. The Chinese food market is currently worth £62m (Nielsen, 25,12,1999)
3. The survey was conducted amongst 600 adults who had eaten Chinese food in the last three months.
For further information, samples and photography please contact: Jeanette Grose/Sarah Davies at Munro & Forster Communications on 0171 439 7177 Fax 0171 437 0553.
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