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Monday, January 16, 2012

2012 CNY EVE


PREPARING FOR THE CHINESE NEW YEAR EVE DINNER

12 January

PICKLED GINGERYou can refer to previous Pickle Ginger recipe

I managed to buy very nice young ginger this year. I did 1kg of ginger. It was well received and all containers cleared after serving and sharing around.


14 n 15 January

NGO HIANG
You can refer to previous Ngo Hiang recipe.

I was at the city main market buying fried kwai tiao when I saw a lady buying so many packs of pork in paste form (like those for making meat balls) from the same stall. It is made from the top-side of the pig..lion/saddle meat. Then I was told it is very good for making meat rolls but have to go along with minced pork. I bought a pack which is 1/2 kg each at RM20. So here I give it a try and the result is good. I used this to replace the usual shrimp or fish that is in the recipe.

You can purchase this pork paste at Miri City main market - first stall by the back doorway closer to the shoplots. This stall sells roasted chicken, pork and meat rolls. It also sells fried noodles and kwai tiao, infact, quite a popular stall.



Here is the recipe for my Ngo Hiang this year.
(A)
500 gm minced pork
250 gm pork paste
2 pairs of chicken liver - boil-cooked and diced
200 gm water chestnuts - diced
1 red carrot - diced (I prefer it diced than shredded so you can feel the bite)
12 dried mushrooms- diced
2 Tbsp Shiaoxin wine
2 Tbsp sesame oil
2 Tbsp light soy sauce
2 tsp 5-spice-powder
1 tsp pepper
1 tsp salt
1 egg

(B)
2 Tbsp of cornflour for sealing
2 packs of beancurd sheets (I need only 11/4 packs)


Mixed all the ingredients in (A)...mixed them well together.

Cut the beancurd sheets to sizes preferred. I cut each sheet into 8 pieces and this recipe makes around 9 to 10 rolls depending on the size you prefer.

Soften the beancurd sheets by dipping into a basin of water. I dip one by one as I make the rolls.

Brush some cornflour onto the sheet before rolling the mixture.

Heat up your steamer with the water. Oil the steamer plate and put a few rolls on it with some gaps in between the rolls for expansion during the process. Steam for 8-10 min. Let it cool.

You can deep fry them and serve. I just fry mine in a grilling pan. I made 2 recipes this year and freeze them for consumption over the CNY.

My mum's comment: "Very Good" :)


HOT n SPICY CHICKEN FEET
Please refer to Hot n Spicy Chicken Feet recipe.

A must when all my children are back. This is one of their favorites. So I cooked 1.6 kg of chicken feet this year. I cooked ahead of time and freeze them so I wont have to do some much cooking on CNY eve.

One thing I realised is to buy chicken feet from the same source. I bought 1kg from a hypermarket and 1/2 kg from the chicken market. The ones from the chicken market are tougher while the ones from the hypermarket tend to lose their skin as I fried them in the wok.


16 January

CHILLED PORK LEG
Please refer to Chilled Pork Leg recipe.

I ordered 4 pcs of the pork leg but I was only able to get 3. I am not happy with the supply this year as I find them very smelly and the deboning wasnt as nicely done as the previous year. I boiled a big pot of water with cloves and dried orange skin; then blanched the pork legs in the hot water. It did help to rid the smell but made it more difficult to wrap it up later as the hot water hardened the meat a bit. With my left thumb handicap I had a hard time trying to push the meat inside the skin and bandaging it, working with just my right hand. If my trigger thumb problem doesnt go away, this may be the last time I can make this :(

Last year, I soaked the whole leg in the wine with the bandage on. This round after cooking, I removed the bandage and cut off the hooves part before soaking it in Shaoxin wine. Will see the result after 3 days.

Result: I am not sure if the wine is stronger this year or because I took off the bandage that caused the pork leg to have a stronger wine taste than last year's. Well, some prefer the stronger taste while some dont.

18 January
PORK BELLY

This is a new recipe that I want to try out this year. It is an easy to follow recipe and I think it is going to taste good. After cooking it in a clay pot for 2 hrs and cooled it, I wrapped the pieces in foil and freeze them for the final step for CNY eve dinner. I intend to pan fry it instead of steaming it.

Result: I steamed it and it didnt turn out to be a popular dish during the dinner, so it went into the fridge for a few days. The pork belly were already cut into about 3/4 inch thickness when I steamed it for the eve dinner, so I just pan-fried the pieces without the gravy, then heat up the gravy and pour over them. It turned out to be much better. However, it is still nothing compared to the CARAMEL PORK BELLY which I did last year. The turning table in my microwave oven is not working so I didnt cook this recipe this year.


22 January - Chinese New Year Eve
I fried 1kg of Black Hokkien Noodles and cooked 1 dish of mixed vegie to add to menu. Bro Michael bought roasted pork and char-sau(said to be best in Bintulu) and Bro Bernard cooked chicken rice (which is very nice) and fried chicken wings (Sheerah's request).  So we had too much food this year which of course were brought forward :)

After the dinner and clearing off the table, we celebrated birthdays for Dec-Jan and waiting for the time to come for the fire crackers. Joanna got a nice puzzle of the disney cartoons as one of her birthday presents and it was started right away after that while waiting for the countdown.  





Here are pics of the two piggy banks I made for Joanna and Chris. They are crocheted on plastic containers on which I cut a small opening and I made them open-able at the lids. The heads are the lids.


It was a great time of togetherness...the fun, the laughters, the doing things together...the FAMILY.  All the effort, tireness and exhaustion is worth it all. But it was over so soon. Time is never enough cos the demand for attention comes from friends, classmates, schoolmates besides family. So I am grateful for my children setting some time to be at home though I would always wish for more. I was touched when my son called off a bbq with his friends to have a simple dinner at home and spend some time with us.  Now home is back to a quiet mode and life goes on.

Thank God for this Chinese tradition of family reunion time at CNY Eve which should be kept and passed on.

And I am looking forward to a better year and more opportunities for the togetherness.

May God watch over everyone, may the fear of God be in everyone's choices and most of all may His love and grace be the bond in every family.