Among other famous Beijing Muslim eateries is Donglaishun. The one-hundred-year-old restaurant is distinguished for its trademark recipe, the Shuanyangrou, or instant-boiled mutton. The meat is taken only from the lambs of Inner Mongolia.
The idea is -- put the thin pieces of lamb into the boiling water. Once the color of the meat changes, add blended seasonings, usually made from sesame soy sauce. Diners can boil all kinds of vegetables. But make sure you're accomplished in the art of using chopsticks.
Kaorouji has been serving Muslim cuisine to Beijingers since the Qing Dynasty. Their house specialties are barbecued lamb and steamed sesame buns. What's worth special mention is the location.
It is tucked away in Shichahai, north of Beihai Park. There's been very little modernization of the area. The restaurant sits amid a tangle of narrow Hutongs situated around two man made lakes. Those lakes were created by the Yuan Dynasty over 700 years ago.
Kaorouwan is another Muslim BBQ. It claims even greater antiquity. This place has been around for more than three hundred years. It is most famous for its beef barbeque, which is tender and gamey.
Ziguangyuan, or "Purple Light Garden" has three branches in Beijing. Its specialty is Stir-Fried Starch Knots, a kind of Chinese pasta.
Youyishun excels in mutton. The taste is characterized by its fresh yet dense flavor. Prices here are a little lower than what you're likely to find in the other places we've seen.
The Xinjiang dishes come from a different branch of the Muslim cuisine. The Xinjiang Islam Restaurant offers the native cuisine prepared by the people in Beijing who know Xinjiang cuisine best. Here are some of our recommendations -- the Xinjiang Noodles, Big Plate Chicken, Baked Mutton-stuffed Bun, Rice Pilaf and the Lamb Kebabs.
Xinjiang Red Rose Restaurant serves all of these. It's a boisterous place. The song and dance routines of the Uygur girls may get you out of your seat. It's a good place for a lively evening.
Finally we come to the Yijinyuan Restaurant. It's Beijing's first five-star Muslim Restaurant.The setting is distinguished by its unique architectural style. It's like an old Chinese courtyard. They also do some experimenting here with traditional Muslim cuisine. The menu is traditional Muslim but many of the dishes have assimilated the culinary traditions of Hong Kong, Guangdong, Sichuan and Shanghai.