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6 Recipes to Try for Chinese New Year
Chinese New Year also known as the Lunar New Year is around the corner and for 2021 we’re celebrating the year of the Ox! The ox is the second animal of the 12 year Chinese zodiac and represents honesty, hard work and positivity; and while the beginning of 2021 still has many of us dealing with the effects of covid-19, we’re wishing the year ahead has plenty of positivity in store for everyone.
To kick start the celebrations, this spring festival of Chinese New Year (although celebrated in British winter), is a wonderful time for family and friends to come together and reunite at the dinner table to indulge in their favourite and traditional Chinese cuisine. Of course, this year’s festivities will be enjoyed within safe support bubbles during lockdown. And if you want your Chinese new year food menu to be a hit, you have to remember that variety is essential to cater to everyone’s taste-buds. However, there’s no need to worry, we’re rounding up a great selection of 6 traditional and experimental Chinese recipes with an option for everyone to love!

Chinese Lotus Root

Whether you or your family members are vegan, vegetarian or flexitarian, lotus root is a popular ingredient in many Asian recipes for everyone to equally enjoy. This dense and crunchy vegetable is well suited to being stir-fried to produce a lovely sweet and nutty flavour. We love this recipe by Char at wokandskittet which combines the lotus root with soy sauce for seasoning and brown sugar to enhance it’s natural sweetness. If you’re strapped for time and need something easy to prepare, add this dish to your menu; it only takes 15 minutes to make!
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Cantonese Sui Mai

Impress diners with something that is as pleasing to their eyes just as much as their taste buds with this Cantonese Shumai or Siu Mai recipe! Typically served as a dim sum snack, sui mai is a great menu option for balancing out other heavy and heartier meals during your Chinese new year feast. Traditionally Siu Mai consists of a pork and shrimp filling but you can definitely surprise everyone by experimenting with ingredients like chicken or even mushrooms for vegan/vegetarian alternatives.
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Gochujang Tofu Dumplings

Another dumpling dish to play with but this time with a spicy Korean twist! The Lunar New Year is actually celebrated across many countries in Asia and in South Korea it is recognised at the Korean New Year although without the Zodiac symbolism. As such, Gochujang tofu dumplings are a wonderful way to merge two cultures of celebration. Similar to the Siu Mai, these dumplings are a nice and light bite ideal for serving as an appetiser or snack.  For those who are unfamiliar with Korean cuisine, Gochujang is a traditional Korean spicy red pepper paste often used to marinade a range of food and add flavour to Korean meals. To save time with this recipe, we recommend using our ready made dumpling pastry so you can get straight to the filling and cooking!
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Chinese Hotpot 

If you’ve made it this far and don’t feel like making a fuss in the kitchen this year, especially during lockdown, you can always keep it traditional with a good old Chinese hotpot! Chinese hotpot guarantees to be a crowd pleaser with the variety of fish, meat and vegetable selections on offer with the option of different flavours of dipping soup. If you’re new to hotpot, Joyce’s guide at ‘pupswithchopsticks’ gives you a great breakdown of ingredients, tools, prep and cooking tips. We personally love that she gives you a recipe option for a basic hotpot soup/broth along with more silkier, spicier and mix and match options. Try our range of frozen meats, seafood and vegetables for your own hotpot dining! *We recommend our Cheong Lee Hotpot Fish Selection for those of you not sure which selections to add.
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(hotpot meats and seafood balls)
(basic hotpot broth/soup)

Steamed Chicken Chinese Sausage

Steaming is a widely popular cooking method across many Asian countries and it’s no different during dinner parties. Aside from the typical steamed light dumpling dishes, there are more hearty options for people who really want to feast for the occasion. This recipe steams the delicious Chinese sausage, a pork sausage which is normally smoked, sweetened, and seasoned with rose water, rice wine and soy sauce. This is steamed along with chicken thighs to create a tasty dish perfect for sharing around the table at Chinese New Year. 
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Chinese sausage, light soy sauce, shaoxing wine, sugar, sesame oil, cornflour. 

Turnip Cake (Chinese Lok Bak Go)

Traditionally the most popular cake at Chinese new year is Nian Gao, but we thought you could try something a little different this year. Our pick is the Chinese Lo Bak Go, also known as the turnip cake. Despite being called a turnip cake, it actually doesn’t use western turnip, but rather a Chinese radish; and while it’s called a cake, it’s actually on the savoury side containing ingredients such as shiitake mushrooms, shrimp and chinese sausage. So while it might not satisfy, it’s definitely a favourite at the table during this time of year.
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