8 Lunar New Year recipes for good times ahead

If January 1st didn’t look like the annual reset you were hoping for, you can celebrate now by baking for the Lunar new year . For this...


If January 1st didn’t look like the annual reset you were hoping for, you can celebrate now by baking for the Lunar new year. For this Year of the Tiger, it begins on February 1 and the inaugural party begins the evening before. In China and other Asian countries that recognize the holiday, such as Singapore, Vietnam and South Korea, the festivities can last two weeks, and the foods often symbolize promises of a better year to come. But the immediate reward is something delicious to eat, whether you’re cooking a feast or just a side dish.

A highlight of restaurant banquets, this dish can also be prepared at home, especially with the simplified techniques of Kay Chun. It is part of the tradition of serving whole poultry to signal abundance. But it also tastes more special than chicken and feels like a celebration in both the cooking process and the serving.

Long noodles symbolize long life, and there are endless variations for the holiday dish beyond the classic Cantonese. longevity noodles. This Singaporean version, topped with egg ribbons and crispy shallots, comes from Sharon Wee, the author of “Growing Up in a Nonya Kitchen.” She suggests garnishing it with spices belacan sambala tasty hot sauce with shrimp paste.

Recipe: Nonya Hokkien Stir Fried Noodles

For Tết, the Vietnamese Lunar New Year, cookbook author Andrea Nguyen often prepares this classic holiday dish. The rich combination of pork and eggs gets its savory flavor from the fish sauce and a bit of sweetness from the coconut water and caramel, which also adds a welcome bitter touch. Ms. Nguyen serves the dish over steamed rice and with marinated bean sprout salad to provide a refreshing contrast.

Recipe: Thit Heo Kho Trung (Caramel Pork and Eggs)

The sticky texture and round shape of these Chinese New Year dessert dumplings symbolize family unity and therefore promise togetherness for the coming year. With the tender chew of a marshmallow and a nougat-like sesame filling, these rounds are served in a sweet ginger soup. They’re easy to form and freeze well, so you can whip up a big batch at a time and eat them throughout the holiday season.

The Korean New Year, Seollal, is commemorated by tteok mandu guka steaming soup filled with sticky rice cakes, which one is supposed to eat in order to see their next birthday. Mandu, the dumplings, aren’t necessary, but they taste delicious in the broth, especially when made from scratch using this recipe from Julya Shin and Steve Joo.

Recipe: mandu

In the Philippines, noodles for longevity take many forms, and this dish is among the richest. Thinly shredded chicken simmers in a fragrant sauce to thicken it, and plump shrimp top the noodles, along with hard-boiled eggs and crispy chicharron, in this recipe from chef Angela Dimayuga.

Recipe: Pancit Palabok (rice noodles with chicken and shrimp stew)

The Chinese word for fish sounds like the word for abundant surplus, so a steamed whole fish symbolizes good fortune for the coming year. You can prepare an elaborate version or the simpler one by David Tanis.

Cracked candied nuts and seeds are arranged and shared throughout the Lunar New Year season. They’re easy to buy online or at Asian markets, but they’re arguably even easier to make at home by following this candy recipe from Andrea Nguyen.

Recipe: Keo Lac Vung (peanut and sesame candies)

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Newsrust - US Top News: 8 Lunar New Year recipes for good times ahead
8 Lunar New Year recipes for good times ahead
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