Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Massive CNY eve dinner

My Chinese New Year eve dinner this year was massive! We had more number of dishes than the persons eating. LOL! My mom over over...over cooked. We actually had one more dish to eat buy the table was over crowded with food already. Phewww... we all ate like there was no tomorrow and there were still ample of food.

But you know like what all the typical Chinese myth believers say... "Eat till you are full on the eve so that you will not starve for the year" and "Food remains on the table is a sign of good luck as you will always have something on the table to eat." And from my aunty..."Hahaha and we have back up too! The other chicken and the other dish is still uncooked. That means more luck for food!!" LOL!

My stomach managed to cram in all of the below and shark fin soup. I remembered I took a picture of it but it didn’t turn out.

Lou Sang. (Lou = mix; Sang = raw) The dish contains slices of carrots, ginger, crispy crackers, colored, rice flour crispy strips, preserved onion, sweet and sour cause, mixed spice power, raw fish and a few more ingredients (the ingredients varies from different Lou Sang's). The ingredients are arranged neatly on a large plate and before it is eaten, the dish must be mixed.

This dish is usually eaten on the 8th day of CNY (...I think) but for those who likes it... well every day is the 8th day. This Lou Sang dish was actually bought but I have sliced some green apples, yellow pears and peeled some pomelo to add to the ingredients of the Lou Sang. You can use any kind of raw fish for the Lou Sang. Marinate the raw fish first, if the smell of the fish is too strong.

Sambal Heh Bee. (Sambal = grinded chilies mixed with spices; Heh Bee = Small dried shrimps) The Sambal Heh Bee is a mini side dish acting like a sauce. But taste really good even if eaten just by itself. [Edit: also see Sambal Heh Bee recipe]

We didn't manage to finish this but Sambal Heh Bee makes a good filling for the Mini Springrolls. This will taste good with white porridge or plain dried noodles. Or can be mixed into a can of plain tuna that later can be made into tuna sandwich.

Acar. This dish is a mix of carrots, cucumber, cabbages, long beans and the Acar gravy (sour and spicy) topped with shopped groundnuts.

Acar and Sambal Heh Bee are actually Nyonya dishes. Some people might be wondering how come this two is on the menu for a typical Chinese dinner. Well... food is food on any table and I welcome them muahahha!

Mixed Vegetables. There is a very grand name for this dish but I can't seem to recall the name. This dish is basically stir fried mix vegetables of garlic, onion, French peas, button mushrooms, lotus flower, lotus root, carrots and also gingko.

Steamed Pak Chong. To really enjoy the sweetness of the fish meat, the fish was only steamed with sesame oil. Ginger and light soya sauce is added later.

Choosing the right soya sauce important to bring out the 'correct' taste of your food. Did you know that more expensive soya sauce are sweet and salty? The cheaper ones are just salty. Buy more quality and expensive soya sauce for better tasting dishes.

Wou Tau Kau Yoke. (Wou Tau = Yam; Kau Yoke = Pork) This yam and pork dish is one of those dish where it taste better as leftover. The dish would taste as it best after the sauce have sipped into the yam and the pork.

Marmite Prawns. (Marmite is a brand for yeast extract.)


Hoi Sam. (Hoi Sam = Sea cucumber) Like the Wou Tau Kau Yoke, this dish will taste better after the sauce have sipped into the sea cumber. But there something I have to remember, over boiling\re-boiling the Hoi Sam will actually melt it. So don't let it disappear.

Yong Tau Foo. (Stuffed ToFoo) My mom did not limit the stuffing just to fish paste alone. For a delicious stuffing, my mom mixed fish paste and minced pork. Finely chopped dried cuttel fish, salt, sugar and pepper are also mixed for better taste.

Kai Lan with rice wine. Instead of using garlic to stir fry the Kai Lan, a few table spoon of rice wine is used.

Steamed abalone. As the meat of the abalone is sweet, it is a waste if its cooked with sauces. Would taste good in a steamboat too! or in this case, I ate the abalone with the Sambal Heh Bee. YUM!

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