Monday, January 26, 2009

Chinese New Year eve dinner

My dad on the left (Freddy) and my dad in law on the right (Fred)

This year Chinese new year family dinner is a meaningful one. Instead of the usual of going to the Chinese restaurant for the dinner , I decided to have something different this year and had the dinner at my house. My mum, wife and I were the chef for the day. I cooked up the following dishes, Yellow prawns cook in Hoisin sauce, Steamed garoupa fish, Sauteed Scallops with broccoli,yellow and red capsicum, My mum whipped out sweet and sour pork (my mum's specialty), Steamed chicken with special sauce, a recipe which was handed down from my late grand mother and shark fin with crab meat soup. My lovely wife prepared the Japanese tofu with minced meat (beef).

Cooking the dish itself does not take a long time, however the preparation is the most time consuming. It is a process of deciding on the manner of cooking the dish, sourcing and selecting the raw food and it's ingredients at the local market, cutting, dicing and marinating the meat prior to cooking it. we also need to plan the sequence of dishes to be cooked as to optimise time and spaces in the kitchen. As it is an auspicious dinner, the choice of dishes needs to reflect prosperity and abundance. So I ensure that we spend a little extravagant on the food such as the shark fin and yellow prawns. Even the pig trotters was air flown from Sabah, well that was because of the local shortage.
I observed that Chinese restaurant set dinner would usually be priced at 388, 588 , 688 and so forth. The number 88 is important to the Chinese as it signifies prosperity and wealth. Having the dinner at the home is so much memorable and fun. My parents and my wife family came and made this evening dinner a memorable one. Though my siblings Robert, Simon and Vivian can't make it this year because they were having it with their respective in laws. Though a lot of effort and time is put into the preparation, it was worth it.

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