We were invited to dinner at some dear friends’ home last month to celebrate the start of the 4710th Chinese year, the year of the dragon. Our friends wore the traditional red that has always been the symbol of celebration in the Chinese culture.
When we arrived, the table was set and slowly, the food was being served:
As we all seated ourselves, we were each given red envelopes to open. Each had some money or a card. The red color pervades through the evening. It symbolizes fire, which is supposed to ward off evil spirits.
I was able to take photos of some of the dishes. Unfortunately, as the wine started to flow, conversations became more and more animated, food was being passed around, I lost track of the other dishes and when I remembered to take more pictures, most of them were demolished!
So, here’s all I was able to capture:
We loved the freshness and variety of this vegetable stir fry. The vegetables stayed crisp but were served hot and seasoned.
The jumbo prawns were prepared simply to highlight their natural flavors and inherent sweetness, complimented with cilantro and green onions.
I thought the fried dumplings would be the most ho-hum dish on the table but I was pleasantly mistaken! It was filled with coarsely ground chicken and shrimp mixed with pleasant spices. It also came with a tangy-with-a-kick dipping sauce.
No decent Chinese celebration would be held without the noodles for long life. This cold noodle was refreshed by juliened carrots and cucumbers for crunch, an herbed egg scramble on top and a satay-like sauce (foreground) to go with it. It certainly was like none I’ve tried before but it was very good. Most of us got second helpings!
This roasted duck was adorned with different sweet and tangy fruits. They are supposed to be wishes for good health. I ate some blood oranges and pine nuts, that much I could remember!
The steamed fresh fish was served with chestnuts, shiitake mushrooms, green onions and ginger, all in a soy sesame sauce.
We paused in the middle with some fresh fruit drizzled with maple syrup and a cinnamon bark. It was a much-needed digression before the next volley of dishes. I wish I had the presence of mind to take more photos but then, the evening was rife with testimonials and praises for the great cook! I had to throw in my own copious praises for our chef and our hosts. It was a most enjoyable evening.
- The Year of the Dragon is Here! How About Some Potstickers? (sweetpaprika.wordpress.com)
- Happy Chinese New Year! So Starts Year Of The Dragon (mrgadget.com.au)
- Happy Chinese New Year! (hotchocolateandbooks.wordpress.com)