What is a Tibetan household like? Visiting a Tibetan Household.

23/10/2010
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Beijingholiday.com is proposaling its new tour products: Beijing Tibet Tours at lower price if book now.  There is an itinerary which will take the tourists to spend one day staying in a local Tibetan family, so that you’ll explore and experience the real Tibetan lifestyle. Hereunder is some information about what is a Tibetan household like?

a Tibetan Family

Eating in a Tibetan Family

What do the local Tibetans eat at home?

The Tibetans are mainly engaged in raising livestock. Tibetan sheep, goat and yak are major animals of the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau. Highland barley is the major crop, while wheat, buckwheat, pea, soybean, potato, and haricot bean are also planted. In the southeast section of Tibet, people plant paddy rice, maize, chicken-toe rice, peanut and soybean.

The Tibetans in pastoral areas and agricultural areas have slightly different food, but they are both fond of highland barley pastry, buttered tea, beef, and mutton and dairy products. In the past, grains were rare in the pastoral area, meat and dairy products were scarce and the roasted barley pastry was coarse. They did not eat vegetables and regarded them as weeds. They moved to live near water. They did not have dinners regularly: ate when hungry and drank when thirsty; indulged themselves with food and drinks in rush season and economized on food in slack season. Today, the life in the pastoral area has been greatly improved. Whether a family is well off or not is not assessed according to its stock of meat and milk, but that of grains.

Most Tibetans in agricultural areas have three meals a day, even four, five or six meals in busy seasons or during tense work. They have Ciba, which is made of flour of cooked barley, as their staple food.

The Tibetans in Qinghai and Gansu provinces like to eat a kind of food made of ghee, brown sugar and milk remains in the shape of a big butter cake. The Tibetans in Qinghai often eat a kind of oiled cake called “Te” by locals.

The Tibetans do not use chopsticks when eating meat. They put large pieces of meat on a plate and cut them with a knife. To honorable guests, a dish of sheep tail will be served, on which there must remain a tuft of white sheep fair that stands for good luck.

Milk and dairy products are also indispensable in the daily life of the Tibetans. The Tibetans, male or female, young or old, all take buttered tea as a necessary drink. They also drink milk tea.

a Tibetan Family

a Tibetan Family

Your Proper Behaviors While Visiting a Tibetan’s Household?

The Tibetans often entertain guests with buttered tea, Ciba and meat. There is a set of rules for drinking buttered tea. When the guest is offered seat at the Tibetan square table, the host puts a wooden bowl (or cup) in front of the guest. The host (or hostess) then carries the buttered tea bottle (often replaced by a thermo flask nowadays), shakes it before pouring a full bowl of buttered tea. The guest shall not drink it immediately but chat with the host instead. When the host carries the bottle to the front of the guest again, he/she may take the bowl, softly blow off the butter blossom on the surface of the tea, sip it and praise it. When the guest puts the bowl back on the table, the host will fill the bowl again. The tea is drunk and added in this way, rather than drunk to the bottom in a gulp. Hospitable hosts always add tea to the brim of tea bowls.

The guest must drink three bowls of tea, but he must not drink up the first bowl of tea, otherwise the host will be offended. After drinking three bowls of tea, if the guest does not want to drink any more, he shall dump the remains to the ground, or the host will continuously refill the tea bowl.

Source of the article  about Tibetan eating and proper behaviors is from sino.impression.com.