Beijing dwellers have the longest average commutation time from work to home, 52 minutes commute on average. In other words, Beijing has a largest number of commuters in China.
Each day people get up around 6:00am. Some bike into work; some ride the subway; other either take a taxi or driver a car to their offices. Many of them spend two hours on the way between home and work. Most of their morning working time falls either at 8:30am or 9:00am.
So, breakfast at home or on their way to work? Some people like me prefer to have breakfast at home, a simple breakfast prepared within 20 minutes.
I’d rather trade breakfast at home for a few more minutes of sleep. Eating at home for me looks better than eating on streets. Those eating at home usually prepare two kinds of breakfast – typical Chinese breakfast and westernized breakfast.
Simple Chinese breakfast at home A typical Chinese breakfast is a bowl of congee, buns, pickles, peanuts or meat. Since cooking congee takes time, people start to make congee one night before and eat next day morning.
Butter, three loaves of bread, a bowl of oatmeal, one boiled egg, one tomato – Simple westernized breakfast at home.
I usually eat simple westernized breakfast. Preparing such kind of breakfast only takes me less than 10 minutes. One boiled egg, one tomato, three loaves of bread, a bowl of oatmeal. I am a regular oatmeal eater, although we call it porridge in Australia.
Most of the commuters eat breakfast on their way to work. They eat at the roadside restaurants, little breakfast stalls or pancake stalls (jianbing) on the streets.
Roadside restaurants offering traditional breakfast including baozi (steamed buns), a rice porridge, youtiao(deep fried sticks of dough), doujiang (bowls of steaming soya milk), youbing (deep fried pancake) and more…
Little breakfast stalls providing fast breakfast food Little breakfast stalls providing fast breakfast food including milk, bread, cake, baozi, porridge.
Some little breakfast stalls even make “Ji Dan Guan Bing” ( pancake s ) on the spot. Ji Dan Guan Bing is almost like a fried pancake. It is a popular breakfast Beijing. The making of Ji Dan Guan Bing involves pouring a mixture of egg and chopped spring onion into the pancake, pan-fried and served piping hot and crispy.
Jianbing vendor’s cart offering delicious local pancake. In some communities, you still can find such kind carts with one stove, on which the vendor makes a local speciality – “Jian Bing”.
Jian Bing is China’s version of the French crepe. It’s got the same type of thin flour wrap. Inside the wrap, it’s usually served with fried eggs, green onions, cilantro, and a savory spicy chilli sauce.
Tip: Hassle-free Beijing Guided Tours
If you don’t want to go the do-it-yourself route and prefer the hassle-free escorted tours, here are some options for Beijing guided tours: