By Nicole Wang

Eating 海胆 (hai dan) Sea Urchin in Dalian China

Eating 海胆 (hai dan) Sea Urchin in Dalian China

你好 (Ni hao)!(we learned that in the last Mandarin Chinese lesson, remember?).

Today, we’ll learn something about what foods Chinese people like to eat. You may have already heard that Chinese people like to eat “special” foods. For example, some Chinese people (depending the part of China in which they live) eat 狗(gou3)(dog), 蝎(xie1)子(zi)(Scorpion ), 蛇(she2)(snake),蚕(can2)卵(luan3)(silk worm)etc. But to be honest with you, I haven’t tried any of them. Maybe you can try them and let me know how they taste.

To ask “what do you like to eat” in Chinese is: 你喜欢吃什么 (ni2 xi3 huan1 chi1 shen2 me) Here’s the breakdown: 喜欢(xihuan) means like, 吃(chi1) means eat, and 什么(shen2 me) means what. And to answer the question just take 什么 away, and put the stuff you like to eat in, which is我喜欢吃****。 我喜欢吃菜(cai4, vegetable),你喜欢吃什么?我喜欢吃肉(rou4, meat). Okay, time to practice, and let me know 你喜欢吃什么。 See you next time!

Oh, P.S., Here’s a little parting Chinese cultural trivia: Do you know that 1300 years ago Xi’an China was the center of the world, in much the same way that New York City is today.

Nicole Wang holds a master degree at the University of Pennsylvania. Her personal background has been strongly related to East Asia as she grew up both in China and Japan. Nicole has been evolved in the field of Quantitative research, big data, MOOCs, evaluation, marketing, and language teaching. She can be reached at