tell my about my new clay cooking pot with a hole in the middle

My friend gave me a new pot today. It looks beautiful. See picture.

However, it is very unusual to me. It has a chimney and a hole in the middle of the pot. I wonder what I can cook in it. Google is a bit useless as one needs to know what words to use when searching for something. But the good people at the Food52 Hotline know everything cooking. I bet someone here knows what kind of pot this is.

My friend seems to think it's a middle eastern style cook pot, or possibly North Africa. I don't know. I've seen the like before, somewhere, long ago. Something about steam and ginger... but that's all my memory can uncover.

What is it? Anyone have one? What recipes are good for this pot?

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Annie October 7, 2023
This pot is referred to as a "YUNNAN Qiguo Cook Pot". Here is a blog that details its use:
Ginny L. February 19, 2021
Please see the below link:
Ginny L. February 19, 2021
Patty P. March 14, 2021
We have the EXACT sister to the clay pot with the Chinese writing on the sides and a bird and things on the top. Was wondering what it was and how to use it.
Patty P. March 14, 2021
Here is the side view
lizzy310 February 2, 2021
I have one too that I got as a wedding present in 1977. I was given this article about it just today when I put out on FB what should I do with this. Another friend gave me this site. It's something that was used in China for thousands of years. I've used it 3 times in 44 years. I want to use it more.
lizzy310 February 2, 2021
LOL...others found the same link. Sorry for the repeat
Lesley L. June 9, 2020
This claypot is great for steaming pomfret. Cut the fish into pieces and just place them into the pot. After about 10 mins, you will find the pot filled with alot of tasty fish soup. Add spring onions, ginger and coriander. Yummy.
Greenstuff February 27, 2017
I had a pot like that and just used it to steam vegetables. Others have used similar pots to steam rice. My guess is that similar pots can be found from many places, but here's a link to their use in Yunnan, China.
Greenstuff February 27, 2017
Whoops, I see I'm not the first to give you a link to the same French site. Scrolling was sort of oddly slow for a minute. My page is different, so check them both out.
foofaraw February 27, 2017
Internet search provides , which seems to be a kind of French/Chinese steamer.
Check out Le steamer page which provides how to cook with it and recipes.
PHIL February 27, 2017
Your friend is thinking of a Tangine. This is something different.
anka February 26, 2017
It is Ceramic Food Steamer With Central Chimney
Catherine February 26, 2017
Based on this video, I would guess it is a steamer pot?
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