Gong Hei Fat Choi!

Happy Chinese New Year!

Now I could say that to welcome the year of the snake me and the family went out to Chinatown, had an epic meal of dim sum and other sweet treats and watched the dragon dancing in Trafalgar Square.

Alas I may have to bore you a little bit and admit that we spent Chinese New Year at home (mainly because on Sundays my younger siblings have to go to Chinese school and weekend tutoring).

My old housemate from university was quite perplexed when she phoned me up and asking what I was doing at that moment on Sunday and had to admit that I was actually ironing school uniforms.

But anyway, the family lunch (tuen yuen fan), was a simple meal; mussels steamed with garlic and ginger for starters and for mains deep fried king prawns with sweet and sour sauce, steamed salmon with blackbean sauce, roast duck and kai lan (it’s a type of vegetable by the way). To end the meal we had lotus root and water chestnuts soup.

Whilst our Chinese New Year was something of an understated and simple affair it doesn’t detract from it being that time of year for family.

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Happy Christmas and a Happy New Year all

Been a bit silent on the blogging front this week mainly because of Christmas, which I thought would be relaxed actually turned out to be quite hectic.

A lot of people naturally assume that Chinese people don’t celebrate Christmas because it somehow goes against their beliefs. I’ll have you know that the Chinese generally celebrate anything as long as food is involved (that said we haven’t really celebrated Ramadan or Diwali…).

But anyway Christmas was good and is always a good opportunity for us to eat (as my younger sister would say “face your fears, EAT IT!!”) It’s a new Wong family tradition that on Christmas Eve we have the traditional Christmas roast of turkey, roast potatoes, brussel sprouts and the works.

Unfortunately this year our oven had a bit of a hissy fit meaning that we couldn’t cook turkey (turn up the heat and things don’t cook, turn down the heat and things over cook).  The problem was solved after the parents bought an oven thermometer, so Christmas Eve lunch was saved. We had roast pork, parsnips, roast potatoes, Yorkshire pudding, stuffing, carrots, peas and brussel sprouts.

For Christmas Day however we have a Christmas duck instead of turkey, there’s pork with taro and potatoes, Chinese mushroom with chicken, sea bass with spring onion and ginger mixed vegetables (carrots, celery, courgettes and brussel sprouts), and duck.

For the last three years we have been going to dad’s friends’ place. A reunion with his old school friends (imagine a Chinese restaurant full of loud rowdy Chinese men playing mahjohng). The highlight of the evening is of course not watching the mahjohng (indeed I don’t know how to play it), but the big feast at the end of the evening.

There was lobster, duck, chicken, more beef with taro, sweet and sour pork, tofu stuffed with pork, Chinese roast pork, Chinese jellyfish salad, and traditional Chinese broth.

A wonderful feast it was indeed. Bring on Chinese New Year!