Chinese New Year is the perfect excuse to trade in your usual evening meal for a taste of the Orient, and we aren’t talking about a trip to your local takeaway. We’re talking about authentic, home-cooked Chinese food that isn’t just healthier, but a whole lot tastier than the alternative!
With the dawning of the year of the goat, there is no better time to flex your culinary muscles and whip up some Chinese cuisine for friends and family – here are three delicious recipes that both beginners and culinary connoisseurs can tackle.
Pork and Chinese chives pot stickers
Kian Lam Kho, AKA. Red Cook, is one of the kings of Chinese home-cooking, and in-keeping with his reputation, these pork and Chinese chives pot stickers are no ordinary dumplings. Rather than boiled, they are fried and steamed in the same pan, a traditional process that goes back to the days when communal family meals were a comfort in China’s unstable political landscape.
So, why not get the whole family involved with whipping up these dumplings for Chinese New Year? All you need to make the dough is flour, boiling water and cold water, while the filling involves a delicious mixture of ground pork, Chinese chives, spring onion, minced garlic, salt, white pepper and sesame oil. You can check out the full recipe here.
Chinese barbecue spare ribs
If you’re a fan of sticky, gooey goodness, you need to pop Appetite for China’s barbecue spare ribs on your Chinese New Year menu. This delicious finger food is a takeaway favourite, but once you get a taste of the home-cooked alternative, you’ll never go back!
Like Red Cook’s dumpling recipe, this method is easier than it looks. Simply take two and a half pounds (1.1kg) of pork spare ribs, and marinate them in a mixture of honey, rice wine (or dry sherry), ketchup, hoisin sauce, dark soy sauce, sesame oil, minced garlic and Chinese five-spice powder. It’s a fragrant mixture that delivers a unique taste, but for the deepest flavour, marinate your ribs overnight. You can find the full recipe here.
Also known as spicy wok-fried chicken with chillies, this mouth-watering dish is another winner from Appetite for China. It’s a little more complicated than the previous two recipes, and incorporates more ingredients, but is worth the effort for that first taste of satisfying Chinese spice!
Your basic ingredients involve chicken breast, corn starch, salt, black pepper, peanut (or vegetable) oil, dried red chillies, garlic cloves, leek and ginger, while the marinade is made from a simpler mixture of soy sauce, rice wine (or dry sherry) and egg whites. For the sauce you’ll need chilli garlic sauce, soy sauce, chicken stock, Chinese black vinegar, more corn starch and Sichuan pepper. If your belly is rumbling as loudly as ours, you can find the full recipe here.
What will you be cooking for Chinese New Year: one of these recipes or a favourite of your own? Maybe you’d prefer a night off from cooking and will be heading to your favourite Chinese takeaway after all? Let us know!