A chicken is always served on Chinese New Year. It reminds me of having large dinner gatherings at my grandmother's house when she would be prepping and cooking all day long. Now, with everyone working and families growing, it's harder to gather everyone together, which makes it even more important than ever to celebrate the New Year together.
1 whole chicken
4 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp ground black pepper
2 tsp ground 5 spice
3 tsp sand ginger spice
2 each green onion
1 inch ginger
6 each whole garlic cloves
In a bowl, combine salt, pepper, five spice and giner spice together.
Rub the spice over the entire chicken.
Wrap and place in refridgerator overnight.
Salt chicken cavity and add the green onion, ginger and garlic.
Set chicken aside.
2 cups sticky rice
4 tsp dark soy sauce
2 tsp oyster sauce
2 tsp sesame oil
3 tsp Shaoxing wine
4 oz dried shrimp
2 each Chinese sausage, ﬁnely chopped
12 each Shitake mushrooms, ﬁnely sliced
½ red thai chili, ﬁney chopped
4-5 lotus leaves, soaked in hot water
Combine dark soy sauce, oyster sauce, sesame oil, and Shaoxing wine. Set aside.
Strain the rice. Place into large mixing bowl. Set aside.
Soak dried shrimp in hot water for 5 minutes and strain. Set aside.
Heat a sauté pan over high heat, add Chinese sausages and sauté for 3 minutes.
Add the mushrooms and soaked shrimp. Sauté until mushroom are tender.
Add vegetables, chili, and sauce into rice. Mix.
Line bamboo basket with lotus leaves. Add chicken to middle. Place sticky rice mix around the chicken.
In a wok, bring water to a boil. Add basket on top and cover.
Steam chicken for 45 minutes to 1 hour. Add boiling water if water is low. Serve immediately.
A salad is an item you would not normally see at a traditional Chinese New Year dinner. However, for me, I love the refreshing textures, especially when served with all the other dishes during the big family meal. The pomegranate symbolizes fertility.
3 honey or red pomelos, segmented
½ cup pomegranate seeds
1 medium carrot, grated
¼ red onion, thinly sliced
¼ bunch cilantro leaves
½ lotus root, very thinly sliced
2 cups vegetable oil
In a large pot, heat oil to 350°.
Gently add lotus root one at a time. Deep-fry until golden.
Drain onto paper towel. Season with salt. Set aside.
In a medium bowl, combine pomegranate seeds, carrots, red onion, and cilantro. Add half of the dressing and toss. Place on platter.
My mom would always make fish for Chinese New Year and we would all gather around the dinner table and enjoy a festive feast. Fish is a staple because it means prosperity and it's important to serve it head to tail to signify a good year from start to finish.
1 lb whole fish (a white fish such as tilapia)
1-2 ounces ginger, finely sliced
1/4 cup light soy sauce
1 tbsp rice wine
1 green onion, thinly sliced
4 sprigs cilantro
1/2 cup vegetable oil
Rinse fish in cold water and pat dry.
Season the fish inside and out with salt and pepper.
Place the fish on a heatproof plate that will fit inside your steamer.
Stuff half of the ginger inside the cavity of the fish and spread the remaining ginger on top of the fish.
Pour water into a wok or pot and set a steamer in the wok or on the rim of the stockpot. Make sure the water does not touch the bottom of the steamer. Bring the water to a boil over high heat.
Place the fish in the steamer, cover, and steam for about 10 minutes, until the fish flakes easily.
While the fish is steaming, in a small bowl, stir together the soy sauce, wine, and a tablespoon of water. Set aside.
Remove the plate from the steamer and pour off any liquid. Place green onion and cilantro on top of the fish.
Heat the oil over high heat until it is hot but not smoking. Remove the oil from the heat and pour it directly over the scallion and cilantro.
Drizzle the soy mixture over the fish and serve.
Celebrate the Year of the Monkey with these traditional (and tasty) dishes