January 28, 2017

Chinese Water Chestnut Cake 馬蹄糕

Chinese, chinese new year, recipe, Water Chestnut Cake, water chestnut jelly, dessert,  馬蹄糕, cantonese, traditional, 中國新年
By Published: 2017-01-28
We've been busy preparing for Chinese New Year 農曆新年; it's pretty festive here in HK this year.  Picking out our lucky flowers at the crush of humanity that is the Chinese New Year Flower Market, cleaning our darnit too small of a house, getting our little red packets prepared as gifts to children and unmarried big persons.  And the food!  There's New Year's food everywhere one looks, it's just fabulous!  

The traditional trinity of cakes that one must have during the Chinese New Year, at least here in Hong Kong, is as follows:  Sweet Rice Cake Nian Gao 年糕Radish Cake 蘿蔔糕, and Water Chestnut Cake 馬蹄糕.  The Three Queens that welcome the Lunar New Year!  

We have already posted about the first two cakes and you can just click on the links above to find our recipes.  Today we will complete the trinity with the recipe for Water Chestnut Cake, or 馬蹄糕, a very unique sweet jelly traditional Chinese cake that is made with both fresh water chestnuts and water chestnut flour.

January 24, 2017

Tang Yuan Dumplings Osmanthus Sweet Soup 桂花酒釀湯圓

丸子, 圓子, 湯圓, 蛋花, 酒釀,  Tong Yuan, rice Dumplings, Osmanthus flower, Sweet Soup, dessert soup, chinese, recipe, chinese new year
By Published: 2017-01-24
Chinese New Year 中國新年 is come again and the city is stirring itself once again to great activity and anticipation for this most important and festive of Chinese festivals.  One thing I especially love about Chinese festivals is that they put into high gear the twin Chinese obsessions of eating and word play.  

So first (and most importantly for me) there are tons of yummilicious things to stuff yourself silly with during the New Year celebration.  Secondly, not only are you're eating all this deliciousness you are also bringing yourself many good things by means of all this eating!  And how is that?  Well that's because all the Chinese New Year dishes have symbolic names that are lucky and auspicious.  

So for our first Chinese New Year recipe, we present you with Tang Yuan Dumplings in Osmanthus Scented Sweet Fermented Rice Soup, 桂花酒釀湯圓, a traditional Chinese dessert soup of tiny chewy rice dumplings nestled cozily into a soup flavored with the unique sweetness of fermented rice and scented with the aroma of delicate osmanthus flower.  

The symbolic meaning here is the "roundness" or "圓" of the tong yuan 湯圓 which the Chinese interpret as the circle of family or life being complete and full.  

January 16, 2017

Chinese Hawthorn Fruit 山楂

Chinese Hawthorn, Fruit, chinese fruit, mountain hawthorn, chinese haw, chinese hawberry, Crataegus pinnatifida,  山楂, 大紅果

This little red fruit is something I had never seen before in the flesh, so to speak, until the other day when we walked past a neighborhood mom and pop grocer 士多 and I spied the rosy orbs rolling about in a cardboard box placed along the sidewalk in front.  Actually I had never actually properly seen these fruit even in images, as I had only ever seen them as part of a traditional sugar coated candy fruit treat called Tanghulu, or Bingtanghulu 糖葫蘆.  

I had wondered about them and so was extremely delighted upon inquiring to discover that these tiny red fruits were indeed the elusive Chinese Hawthorn, or 山楂.

January 8, 2017

Star Anise Ice Cream 八角雪糕

ice cream, recipe, Star Anise, 八角, 冰淇淋, 雪糕, spice infused, spice, infusion
By Published: 2017-01-08
If you are one of those, as I am, that love the heady almost erotic taste and aroma of licorice then you will love, love, love this ice cream!  This is a spice infused ice cream made from my love of Star Anise, a wonderfully versatile spice that is used in Chinese cooking mostly for its excellent companionship with savory meats.  

So into this spice am I that I have been experimenting with Star Anise in sweet foods, in my baking for one and now in my ice cream making.  So here is our Star Anise Ice Cream, 八角雪糕, a wowzer of an cool luscious licorice treat with the spice's exotic and distinctive aroma nestled snugly against a velvety smooth and creamy ice cream.  Yummilicious!

January 2, 2017

Hong Kong Local Food Recommendations 香港美食推薦

Hong Kong, Local Food, local eats, food exploration, Recommendations,  介紹, 海味街, 香港, 美食, 推薦, 好吃, sheung wan, dried seafood street,
By Published: 2017-01-02
Dear Hong Kong Cookery Readers - We've been asked every once in a while about specific recommends for Hong Kong food places and now one of our readers,  Michelle from Indiana, has written in to ask about where to find the best Hong Kong local eating places and food exploration places and I thought I should share our reply with all of you!  So here it is and Happy New Year to All!  (Special thanks to Michelle for the inspiration for this post!)