Born and raised in the capital, I always loved winter in Beijing. The reason is very simple. In my young eyes, there were just a variety of different snacks that were only available in the wintertime.
Tanghulu or Bingtanghulu
Tanghulu are candied fruit skewers. Traditionally, it’s made of hawthorn fruits covered with a film of crystal clear red sugar-coated. New flavors include candy-coated oranges and strawberry. It might be too sweet for some people, but it is very worthy to give a try. Personally, I never refuse to tasting an exotic flavor. If you can’t find them on the hutongs and roads of Beijing, check you nearest supermarket. They are also sold at Wangfujing’s night market. Prices range from RMB 4 to RMB 6.
Winter is also the time of year for Beijing people to indulge in Tangchaolizi. Roasted chestnuts are made by rolling in huge ovens with sugar and little black stones. In a cold Beijing winter, there is no better thing than cupping your hands around a warm bag of roasted chestnuts. They are typically sold on the streets of Beijing for around RMB 10 for 500g.
Kaohongshu or Kaobaishu
On the streets of Beijing, you’ll find these vendors pushing their ovens, roasting sweet potatoes within. Get one straight out of the oven, while it is hot, fragrant, and sweet. If you have tried, you will never forget this sweet and warm winter experience. It costs around RMB 5 for 300g.