Millions of people will be celebrating Chinese New Year tomorrow and there is no better way to start the year than with some mouth-watering food.
While most countries celebrate new beginnings on January 1, Chinese New Year normally falls between January 31 and February 20, depending on the lunar calendar.
The Chinese zodiac moves in a 12-year cycle and 2019 marks the Year of the Pig, which was last celebrated in 2007, 1995 and 1983.
So to celebrate the start of the Chinese New Year, we’ve rounded up some delicious recipes below.
Pulled Hoisin Chicken Sesame Noodles by Gousto
- 4 British chicken thigh fillets
- 10g Toasted sesame seeds
- 2 Spring onions
- 1 Red chilli
- 4tbsp Hoisin sauce
- 3 Whole wheat noodle nests
- 15g Fresh root ginger
- 24ml Soy sauce
- 2 Garlic cloves
- 150g Spring greens
- 1tbsp Toasted sesame oil
1. Finely chop the ginger and garlic, and thinly slice the spring onion and spring greens.
2. Cut a few chilli rounds (setting aside for garnish), deseed the remaining chilli and chop finely
3. Drizzle vegetable oil into a wide-based pan over high heat, add the chicken thigh fillets and cook for 3 min on each side until browned
4. Once the chicken is browned, add a splash of water to the pan, cover with a lid and cook for a further 5-6 min until chicken is cooked through
5. Add the noodles to a pot of boiling water and cook for 5-7 min until tender with a slight bite, drain, then set aside (but keep the pot for later!)
6. Once the chicken is cooked, remove the pan from the heat and “pull” the chicken by shredding it apart with two forks
7. Return this pan with the pulled chicken to a medium heat and add the chopped ginger, chopped chilli, hoisin sauce and 2/3 of the soy sauce, cooking for 3-4 min until the chicken is coated in a sticky sauce
8. Return the reserved pot to back to a medium heat adding a drizzle of vegetable oil
9. Add the sliced spring greens and chopped garlic with a generous pinch of salt and cook for 1 minute until the greens start to wilt
10. Add a splash of water and cook, covered, for a further 2 min or until completely wilted and then stir in the cooked noodles, toasted sesame oil and the remaining soy sauce
11. Serve the pulled hoisin chicken over the sesame noodles. Garnish with toasted sesame seeds, chilli rounds and sliced onion
Tip: If you’re not a spice fan, go easy on the chilli.
As it’s the Chinese New Year and a time for fresh beginnings, MyNutriCounter have created a simple, nutritious and delicious stir-fry to cater for any healthy eating resolutions. It’s ready in 20 minutes which makes it an ideal healthy meal for those short on time.
- 250g Nian Gao
- 100g Chinese sweet peas, tips picked off
- 100g young corn, cut into bite-sized pieces
- 100g baby carrots, cut into bite-sized pieces
- 100g white onion, thinly sliced
- 15g cornstarch, for dusting
- 50ml oz peanut oil
1. Mix all ingredients for the sauce in a small bowl.
2. Cut Nian Gao into bite-sized pieces. Lightly dust with cornstarch.
3. Heat peanut oil in a frying pan. Pan-fry Nian Gao for about 2 minutes per side over medium heat. Set aside.
4. In the same pan, add peas, carrots, young corn, and onions. Sauté for 3-4 minutes over high heat.
5. Return Nian Gao to the pan and pour in the sauce mixture. Cook for about another minute, stirring continuously.
Black Sesame Ball in Ginger Tea by Shikumen
Makes 20 balls
- 240g glutinous rice (sticky rice) flour
- 180ml water
- 20g black sesame seeds
- 20g sugar
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
- Ginger Syrup (姜茶)
- 1litre water
- 80g sugar
- 120g ginger (skin peeled and then lightly pounded)
1. Lightly toast the black sesame seeds, allow to cool and grind in a processor or by hand until fine but still retains texture.
2. Transfer the ground sesame into a pan, add sugar and butter and stir well to form a thick paste. Add more butter if too dry. Allow to cool in the fridge.
3. Mix rice flour with water until it forms a smooth paste and divide it equally into 20 balls.
4. Fill the dumplings by flattening one ball in your palm, indent the middle with your thumb, lay the black sesame paste it in the middle and fold the edge to seal. Lightly roll back into a ball shape using both palms and set aside in some spare flour to prevent it sticking.
5. Prepare the ginger syrup by boiling the water, add the ginger and boil for 10 minutes at medium heat. Add the sugar and boil for another 5 minutes. Lower heat to simmer and reduce, taste and more sugar if you wish.
6. Heat up another pot of boiling water and drop in the dumplings. As soon as they float to the top they are ready. Transfer them into the ginger syrup, serve and eat.
Makes 12 portions
- Noodle Dough
- 300g all-purpose flour
- 2g salt
- 130ml water
- Vegetable oil for brushing
- Noodle Toppings (per serving)
- 2 teaspoon chili powder + pinch of salt
- 2 tablespoons light soy sauce + 2 tablespoon vinegar
- 2 garlic cloves minced
- 2 spring onion minced
- Chinese Greens for blanching
- 2 tablespoons vegetable cooking oil
To make the noodle dough:
1. In a large bowl mix salt with flour and stir in water slowly and knead until smooth. Cover and rest for 10 minutes.
2. Knead the dough again and rest for another 10 minutes.
3. Brush some vegetable oil on surface and cut the noodle dough into 12 equal portions. Roll each one with your hands into a sausage shape and brush oil over to stop drying out. When the 12 are rolled cover and rest for 1 hour.
4. To prepare a dish for one take one portion, flatten it out and roll out to a rectangle. Hold the two ends of the noodle strip and smash it against a clean work surface slightly stretching it at same time. Do this slowly so the noodle stretches but does not break. Now leave on the surface to rest for a few seconds.
To cook the noodles and toppings:
1. Lift noodle from surface, split down the middle, pull to separate and drop into boiling water.
2. Add Chinese greens to the noodles and water to blanch.
3. After cooking the noodle for around 4 minutes transfer out to serving bowl and top with garlic, spring onion, chilli powder and salt.
4. Heat up 2 tablespoons of cooking oil until slightly smoky and pour hot oil over the noodles.
5. Add soy sauce and vinegar and combine thoroughly.
- Equal parts rice and water cooked to the quantity you require. A guideline is 90g per person
- 1/2 teaspoon of salt
- Cookie cutter of any shape
1. Rinse rice a few times until water is clear, drain and then rice, water and salt in pan and cook.
2. Remove rice when cooked and allow to cool.
3. Place cooled rice in the cookie cutter and fill around half the the way up. Dip your fingers in the water and press the rice down.
4. Heat a frying pan, add oil and when hot place the cakes on the pan and fry until both sides are golden brown.
Tip: If you wish to cook something more than plain crispy cakes you can fill them with sweet or savoury ingredients. To do this add just a third of rice into the cookie cutter, fill them with an array of pre-cooked ingredients such as seasoned ground pork or mushrooms, top with another third of the rice, pat down and then fry.
Vegetable Spring Rolls by Ekachai
- 40g dried mushrooms
- 200g Chinese cabbage shredded
- 1 carrot julienned
- 3 spring onions sliced
- 5 cm piece of ginger peeled and grated
- 1 red chilli chopped
- bunch of Thai basil chopped
- bunch of fresh coriander chopped
- 3 tablespoons toasted peanuts crushed
- 20 ml sesame oil
- 75 g beansprouts
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons oyster sauce
- 1 tablespoon cornflour
- 16 large spring roll wrappers or filo cut into size
- 1 litre groundnut oil
1. Soak mushrooms until soft.
2. Combine mushrooms, cabbage, carrot, spring onion, ginger, chilli, herbs, peanuts, beansprouts, sesame oil, soy and oyster sauce and mix well.
3. Lay two sheets of spring roll wrapper or filo on your work surface with one corner pointing down towards you so as a diamond shape.
4. Spoon in filling on the bottom, brush corners with cornflour mixture and roll up from the bottom pulling the corners in from each side as you go. Continue rolling until the filling is tightly covered and press to seal the top corner. Lay roll on a baking tray and cover with a damp tea towel as you go.
5. To cook heat groundnut oil in a large wok or saucepan over a medium heat. After checking the oil is hot enough (use bread it should sizzle) deep-fry the rolls until golden brown.
Spicy Fragrant Fish with Dry Chilli and Pepper by Er Mei
- 250g skinless, boneless fish fillet
- 1 pinch salt
- 1 pinch white pepper
- 1 teaspoon Shaoxing rice wine
- 1 teaspoon corn starch
- 2 tablespoons of cooking oil
- 2 teaspoons of cooking oil
- 10-15 dried chilli
- 4 teaspoons Sichuan pepper
- 250g celery cut into thin strips
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 teaspoon ginger, minced
- 1 spring onion, chopped
- 1.5 tablespoons Sichuan chilli bean paste
- 1 teaspoon chilli powder
- 400ml fish stock
- Coriander, chopped
1. Slice the fish fillet diagonally and marinate with salt, white pepper, rice wine and corn starch.
2. Fry the spicy topping of dried chilli and Sichuan pepper in a teaspoon of oil over a low heat until fragrant (careful not to burn). Chop coarsely when cooled.
3. In the same wok heat 1 teaspoon of oil over a medium heat and cook celery for around 2 minutes minutes. Transfer to a serving bowl.
4. Heat up 1 tablespoon of oil in the wok, fry garlic, ginger and spring onion, add Sichuan chilli bean paste and chilli powder. Pour in fish stock, bring it to a boil then gently add fish slices. When cooked transfer the fish and the sauce onto the celery in the serving bowl.
5. Garnish with fried spicy topping and coriander. Heat 1 tablespoon of oil then pour over to sizzle the spices. Serve immediately with plain rice.
Shrimp and Coriander Dumplings by Luca Malacarne of Novikov
- Wheat Starch
- Potato Flour
- 900gr Prawns
- 600gr Coriander
- 350gr Garlic
- 30gr Salt
- 20gr White Pepper
- 15gr Thai Yam Bean
Luca explained: “To make dim sum you need to make the dough first with water and flour and then fill with your chosen ingredients.
The art of making dim sum in its simplest form is based on look and feel and the most important thing is that the skin must be very thin. For making the skin of dim sum you will need equal parts of flour and water. Mix them together with hands in a large bowl until the dough is smooth and consistent.
A steamer is very easy and simple to use. Simply switch on the steamer machine and place your chosen fillings that you would like to steam inside and then close the lid. I would recommend using a timer – if you’re steaming fish and veg it’s usually four minutes and for meat five minutes.
Serve the dim sum with either Mango sauce or Kimchee sauce. The latter is made from Korean chili powder, fresh chilli, water, salt, garlic, sugar, red pepper, cabbage, squid, bonito flakes and ginger. The Mango sauce is made from mango purée and mayonnaise mixed together with a whisk.”