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Chinese New Year Recipes

When is the Chinese New Year's Day in Year 2009?
January 26, 2009. This is the first day in the Year of the Ox. Food is one of the most important aspect of the Spring Festival, and huge amounts are bought, prepared and eaten in Chinese households. Many of the foods served at New Year have symbolic meanings. Some foods have a name which sounds the same as a character with a lucky meaning and for some foods their shape and colour are emblems of words special to the Spring Festival such as happiness, prosperity fortune or luck. We have presented with a wide range of recipes for Chinese New Year for you to enjoy with your family and friends.

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Click for the recipes of your choice:
Kung pao chicken | Asian-style fish wrapped in parchment | Yau Gwok (Deep Fried Puffs) | Jin Dui (Chinese Sesame Cookies) | Long life noodles in vegetable sauce | Lemon Chicken | Fish with Sauce | Orange Beef | General Chicken | Delicious Soup | Chicken Velvet Jiaozi(Boiled Dumplings) | New Year's Cake


Ingredients :
1 egg white
2 teaspoons cornstarch
Pinch of salt
1 pound skinless boneless chicken breasts, washed, patted dry, cut into 3/4-inch cubes
1 tablespoon hoisin sauce
1 tablespoon rice vinegar
2 teaspoons reduced-sodium soy sauce
1 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon hot chili paste
1 garlic clove, peeled, ends removed, minced
3 tablespoons water
2 teaspoons peanut oil
4 dried Sichuan chili peppers, seeds removed and discarded
3 cups steamed broccoli florets
1/4 cup unsalted dry-roasted peanuts, coarsely chopped

Preparation :
In a medium bowl, whisk the egg white, cornstarch and salt until smooth; add the chicken and stir to coat. Refrigerate, covered, about 30 minutes. In a small bowl, combine the hoisin sauce, vinegar, soy sauce, sugar, chili paste and garlic with 3 tablespoons water; set aside.
In a large nonstick skillet or wok, heat the oil. Add the peppers and cook, stirring as needed, until blackened, about 1 minute. With a slotted spoon, transfer the peppers to a plate, reserving the oil in the skillet (there will be just a small amount).
Return the skillet to the heat; add the chicken mixture. Cook, tossing lightly, until the chicken becomes translucent (do not brown), 1-2 minutes. Transfer the chicken and pan juices, if any, to a plate and keep warm.
Return the skillet to the heat; add the hoisin sauce mixture and cook, stirring constantly, about 30 seconds.
Stir in the chicken, broccoli and peppers; cook, stirring gently, until heated through, 2-3 minutes. Sprinkle with the peanuts; serve immediately. Serve with hot cooked rice if desired.
Makes 4 servings. Adapted from "Weight Watchers Stir-Fry to Szechuan" (Macmillan, $17.95)
Tested by Susan Selasky for the Free Press Test Kitchen 268 calories (35% from fat), 10 grams fat (2 grams saturated fat), 12 grams carbohydrate, 32 grams protein, 296 mg sodium, 72 mg cholesterol, 58 mg calcium, 2 grams fiber.

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Ingredients :
Parchment paper
4 firm, white fish fillets (sea bass, halibut or red snapper), about 1 1/2 pounds, rinsed, patted dry
3 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
1/2 teaspoon orange peel, finely grated
2 tablespoons orange juice
1 teaspoon sesame oil
1/2 teaspoon fresh ginger root, grated
1 large green onion and top, julienned

Preparation : Cut the parchment paper into four 14-inch squares; fold each square in half. Unfold; place 1 fillet next to the crease of each square.
In a small bowl, combine the soy sauce, orange peel, orange juice, sesame oil and grated ginger and stir well. Spoon the mixture evenly over each fillet and sprinkle with green onion.
Fold the parchment over the fish; roll and crimp the edges together lightly.
Place the packages on a large baking sheet; let stand 15 minutes while preheating oven to 450 degrees. Bake until the fish flakes easily with a fork, about 10 minutes. Transfer packages to individual plates; unroll and pull back the edges to serve.
Makes 4 servings.
193 calories (16% from fat), 3 grams fat (1 gram saturated fat), 2 grams carbohydrate, 36 grams protein, 558 mg sodium, 63 mg cholesterol, 61 mg calcium, trace of fiber.

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Yau Gwok (Deep Fried Puffs)

Ingredients :
5 oz plain flour
1 tablespoon grated coconut
1 1/2 tablespoons roasted pounded peanuts
1 tablespoon fried white sesame seeds
1 tablespoon sugar
4 tablespoons vegetable oil
4 tablespoons water

Preparation :
Sift the flour and separate it into two portions. Add the water into one portion and knead till it is a dough. Add the oil to the remaining portion of flour and knead till it is a soft dough. Mix the two doughs together and knead the dough mixture till it is soft. Roll into a thin sheet. Make into round shapes using a pastry cutter. Mix together the coconut, peanuts, sesame seeds and sugar with a little oil and water, place portions on the individual round sheets of dough mixture, fold over to make a crescent shape and seal the sides. Deep fry on a medium heat till golden brown. Drain and serve.

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Jin Dui (Chinese Sesame Cookies)

Ingredients :
6 oz sweet potatoes
10 oz red bean paste
1 1/2 cups glutinous rice flour
1/3 cup plain flour
2/3 cup white sesame seeds
2 tablespoons sugar
1/2 cup hot water

Preparation :
Peel the sweet potatoes and boil them till tender, then mash them. Sift the glutinous rice flour and flour together then blend together with the sugar and mashed sweet potato. Knead the mixture well and sprinkle in the hot water. Knead the dough into small balls and then roll each ball into a flat round shape. Spoon on some red bean paste onto each as stuffing and knead back into balls. Coat the balls with cold water, then coat thoroughly with sesame seeds. Deep fry on a low heat until the balls are golden and swollen. Drain and serve.

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Ingredients :
8 ounces wheat noodles or thin spaghetti
Nonstick cooking spray
1 tablespoon minced fresh garlic
1 medium cucumber, thinly sliced
3 green onions, cut into 2-inch lengths and thinly sliced lengthwise
1/2 teaspoon chili pepper flakes or to taste
2 tablespoons cornstarch
2 cups low-sodium, fat-free beef broth
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon five-spice powder or to taste
Sesame oil
2 sprigs fresh cilantro, chopped

Preparation :
Cook the noodles according to package directions or until tender. Drain the noodles in a colander and rinse with cold water. Set aside.
Lightly coat a nonstick wok or frying pan with cooking spray and place it over medium heat. Add the garlic, cucumber, green onions and pepper flakes. Cook until the garlic begins to brown, 2-3 minutes.
Dissolve the cornstarch in the broth and add it to the pan with the black pepper and five-spice powder. Stir occasionally until the sauce thickens.
Add the noodles to the vegetable mixture; toss. Sprinkle with sesame oil, garnish with cilantro and serve hot.
Makes 6 servings.
188 calories (14% from fat), 3 grams fat (trace of saturated fat), 33 grams carbohydrate, 6 grams protein, 31 mg sodium, 0 mg cholesterol, 22 mg calcium, 2 grams fiber.

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Lemon Chicken

Ingredients :
2 tablespoons Dry sherry
4 green (Spring) onions, chopped
1 Piece of root ginger, shredded
500g (1 pound) boned chicken, cut into 1 inch strips
2 Celery sticks, sliced
125g (4oz) button mushrooms, quartered
1 Green pepper, cored, seeded, and sliced
2 tablespoons Light soy sauce
Shredded rind of 2 lemons
A few lemon slices to garnish
2 tablespoons oil.

Preparation :
Put the sherry, spring onions and ginger in a bowl. Add the chicken, toss well to coat, then leave to marinate in the bowl for 15 minutes. Heat the oil in a wok or frying pan. Add the celery, mushrooms, and the green pepper. Stir-fry for one minute. Add the chicken and marinade, then cook for 3 minutes. Stir in the Soy Sauce and lemon rind then cook for a further minute. Pile into a warmed serving dish and garnish with lemon slices.

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Crispy Fish with Sauce

Ingredients :
4 large Chinese dried black mushrooms
1 tbsp. peeled, minced FRESH ginger
2 tsp. minced garlic
1/3 C thinly sliced carrots
1/3 C thinly sliced bamboo shoots
1/3 C snow peas, cut in half lengthwise
1 tbsp. rice wine
2 cups chicken broth
1/3 C oyster sauce
3/4 tsp. salt
1 tsp. sugar
1/3 C soy sauce
2 tsp. rice vinegar
3 tbsp. cornstarch mixed with 3 tbsp. water
2 tbsp. peanut oil
1 tsp. sesame oil
shake of white pepper

Preparation :
Soak the dried mushrooms in water to cover, and set aside. Minceginger and garlic and put into a small dish. Cut carrots, bamboo shoots, and snow peas and combine in a small bowl. Combine rice wine, chicken broth, oyster sauce, sat, sugar, soy sauce, and vinegar in a small bow. Combine cornstarch with water in a small dish.
Remove dried mushrooms from bowl and squeeze aout excess liquid. They should be fully hydrated, if not, let them soak longer. Trim and discard stems. Cut into 1/2" wide strips and place in dish with carrots.
Heat wok over high heat for 2 to 3 minutes. Add vegetable oil and heat 30 seconds. Move the wok around so the oil coats the sides. Add ginger mixture and stir 15 seconds. Add vegetables and stir quickly. Add chicken broth mixture and simmer briefly then add cornstarch. Bring to a boil. Add sesame oil, a little white pepper (black can be substituted) and pour over hot fried fish.

Fish: Buy firm fillets and cut into serving sizes. Soak in salt water for 30 minutes. Drain and rinse. Pat dry. Dip in beaten egg and coat well with cornstarch. Fry in hot oil to cover until golden brown. Remove with a slotted spoon. Drain briefly and transfer to serving platter. Ladle sauce over fish.

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Crispy Orange Beef

Ingredients :
1 lb. flank steak, partially forzen
1/4 to 1/2 C cornstarch, approximately
2 to 3 cups PEANUT oil
6 to 8 pieces of dry orange peel, about 1/2" square
1 dozen dry hot pepper pods, about two inches long, or to taste
1/4 small onion, cut in 1/2" squares
1/4 C water chestnut slices
1 tsp. minced garlic
1 tbsp. minced green onion
1 tbsp. rice wine
1/4 C sugar
3 tbsp. soy sauce
1/2 C chicken broth
1 tbsp. oyster sauce
1 tsp. sesame oil

Preparation :
The flank steak should be frozen, but still pliable for easier slicing. Cut it into 3 lengthwise pieces, then cut across the horizontal to make small pieces, about 1/2" by 2" (sizes will vary, but those are ballpark figures). Coat the meat completely with cornstarch and set aside.
Cut up dry orange peel into small pieces and combine in a small dish with hot pepper. Cut onion and combine in another small dish with water chestnuts. Mince garlic and green onion. Combine rice wine, sugar, soy sauce, chicken broth, and oyster sauce in a small bowl. Set a metal strainer over a large receptacle (not plastic) in kitchen sink.
Heat wok for two minutes over highest heat. Add oil and heat until it is very hot. Add beef and stir to break it up. Fry for 2 to 3 minutes, until beef gets a yellowish cast to it and the outside is crispy. Transfer to strainer in sink and pour oil and beef into it.
Place empty wok back on high heat and add garlic and green onion. Add hot pepper and orange peel. Stir briefly. Add onion and water chestnuts and stir 30 seconds. Add sauce and stir well to coat. Let Mixture boil until it thickens slightly. Add hot beef and then sesame oil. Stir once or twice and place on a warm plate. Serve immediately. Serves 4 to 8 as part of a larger meal. Serve with steamed rice.

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General Chicken

Ingredients :
1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken, cut in large chunks
1/3 C cornstarch
1 small zucchini, cut into chunks
2 tsp. minced garlic
1 tbsp. chopped green onion
1/4 C chicken broth
1 tsp. oyster sauce
1/4 tsp. hot pepper paste
1 tbsp. soy sauce
1 tbsp. rice wine
3 tbsp. rice vinegar
1 1/2 tbsp. cornstarch mixed with 1 1/2 tbsp. water
1 tsp. sesame oil

Preparation :
Cut the chicken and coat it with cornstarch. Set aside (discard any extra cornstarch). Slice the zucchini on a shallow diagonal about 1" wide. Roll the zuchhini halfway and slice the same way to form chunks that are shaped like trapezoids. Set aside.
Combine garlic and green onion in a small dish. Combine broth, oyster sauce, soy sauce, hot pepper sauce, wine, and vinegar in a small bowl. In another dish or small glass, mix cornstarch with water. Place a metal strainer in a large receptacle (not plastic) in the kitchen sink.
Heat wok over high heat for two to three minutes. Add vegetable oil; heat until VERY hot. Add chicken; stir to break it up. Fry until golden brown - the color of fried chicken. Transfer chicken to strainer.
Place empty wok back on high heat for 30 seconds. Add garlic mixture and fry for several seconds. Add zucchini and toss a minute over high heat. Add sauce mixture and bring to a boil. Add cornstarch and boil until thickened. Add chicken and sesame oil and heat through. Serve with hot steamed rice. Serves 4 to 8 as part of a larger meal.

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Delicious Soup

Ingredients :
1/2 pound boneless pork loin, coarsely chopped
2 ounces peeled shrimp, finely chopped
1 teaspoon brown sugar
1 tablespoon Chinese rice wine
1 tablespoon light soy sauce
1 teaspoon finely chopped green onion
1 teaspoon chopped fresh ginger root
24 (3.5 inch square) wonton wrappers
3 cups chicken stock
1/8 cup finely chopped green onion

Preparation :
In a large bowl, combine pork, shrimp, sugar, wine, soy sauce, 1 teaspoon chopped green onion and ginger. Blend well, and let stand for 25 to 30 minutes.

Place about one teaspoon of the filling at the center of each wonton skin. Moisten all 4 edges of wonton wrapper with water, then pull the top corner down to the bottom, folding the wrapper over the filling to make a triangle. Press edges firmly to make a seal. Bring left and right corners together above the filling. Overlap the tips of these corners, moisten with water and press together. Continue until all wrappers are used.

FOR SOUP: Bring the chicken stock to a rolling boil. Drop wontons in, and cook for 5 minutes. Garnish with chopped green onion, and serve.

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Chicken Velvet

Ingredients :
2 chicken breasts
2 tablespoons water
4 egg whites
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon sherry
Pepper to taste
1 1/2 cups chicken stock
2 tablespoons cooked ham, minced

Mixture :
1 tablespoon cornstarch
2 tablespoons water
2 cups oil for deep-frying
2 tablespoons oil for stir-frying

Preparation :
Bone and skin the chicken breasts. Then mince the chicken meat very finely (if you like use a blender at low speed). While you are mincing the chicken add 2 tablespoons of water to the chicken a few drops at a time until the water is absorbed and the chicken is like a paste. Beat the egg whites until they are slightly stiff. Carefully fold the beaten egg whites into the chicken mixture. Stir in 1 tablespoon cornstarch to the chicken/egg white mixture. Add seasonings - 1/2 teaspoon salt, pepper to taste if desired, 1 tablespoon sherry if desired. Heat wok and add oil for deep-frying. When oil is ready, add the chicken and deep-fry, using chopsticks to separate the chicken pieces. Turn over and cook the other side (total cooking time should be about 2 - 3 minutes). Remove the chicken from the wok and drain. Clean out the wok. Reheat the wok and add 2 tablespoons oil for stir-frying. When oil is ready, add the stock. Add the chicken and bring to a boil. Add the cornstarch/water mixture, stirring to thicken. Serve hot and garnish with minced ham.

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Jiaozi (Boiled Dumplings) New Year Special

Ingredients :
Jiaozi Dumpling dough
3 cups flour
up to 1 1/4 cups cold water
1/4 teaspoon salt

300 grams fresh Chinese (Napa) cabbage
1/2 lb ground meat (pork or beef)
1 teaspoon salt
1 TB soy sauce
1/4 tsp fresh ground white pepper, or to taste*
1/2 green onion, minced
2 slices fresh ginger, minced
3 TB sesame oil

Preparation :
In a large bowl, dissolve the salt into the cold water. Slowly add the water to the flour, stirring to mix, until it forms a dough, adjusting the amount of water or flour as necessary. Knead the dough into a smooth ball. Cover and let rest for 20 minutes.

While the dough is resting, prepare the filling ingredients. Add the salt, soy sauce, and white pepper to the meat, stirring in only one direction. Add the remaining ingredients, stirring in the same direction, and mix well.

To make the dumpling dough: knead the dough until it forms a smooth ball. Separate into three equal sections. Shape each section into a cylinder approximately 1-inch in diameter. Cut each section into 20 equal pieces, scoring the dough if necessary. Roll out each piece into a 3 - 3 1/2 inch circle.

To make the dumplings, place a small portion of the filling into the middle of each wrapper. Fold the dough over the filling into a half moon shape and pinch the edges to seal. Continue with the remainder of the dumplings. The recipe should make approximately 60 dumplings.

To cook, bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add half the dumplings, giving them a gentle stir so they don't stick together. Bring the water to a boil, and add 1/2 cup of cold water. Cover and repeat. When the dumplings come to a boil for a third time, they are ready. Drain and remove. If desired, the boiled dumplings can be pan-fried at this point.

Serve with your favorite soy dipping sauce. Jiaozi dumplings can be frozen in a sealed plastic bag.

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New Year's Cake

Ingredients :
3 Chinese dried red dates
5 slabs brown candy (peen tong), about 11 ounces
3 teaspoons vegetable oil
7 cups glutinous rice flour
1 tablespoon white sesame seeds
1 large egg
vegetable oil, for pan-frying

Preparation :
In a small bowl, soak the red dates in 1/4 cup cold water for 30 minutes, or until softened. When softened, remove and discard the pits.
Cut each brown candy slab into 8 pieces. Place sugar in a heatproof bowl, pour 2 cups boiling water over the sugar, and set aside until dissolved and completely cooled.
Grease a heatproof 8-inch round, 3- to 4-inch-deep, straight-sided bowl, such as soufflé dish, with 2 teaspoons vegetable oil.
In a large bowl, place rice flour. Make a well and stir in cold sugar water. Knead dough in the bowl, adding an additional 1/3 cup cold water until dough is smooth, slightly moist, and shiny, 5 to 10 minutes.
Place the dough in the prepared dish and pat until it fills the dish evenly.
Cut the red dates into halves and place cut-side down in a ring around the outside of the dough, leaving a few to decorate the center.
Sprinkle the top with sesame seeds. Coat with the remaining 1 teaspoon oil, using your fingers and lightly pressing down on the dates and sesame seeds.
Bring water to a boil over high heat in a covered steamer large enough to fit the dish without touching the sides of the steamer. Carefully place the dish into the steamer, cover, and steam 35 to 40 minutes on high heat. Check the water level and replenish, if necessary, with boiling water. The cake is done when it begins to pull away from the sides of the pan. Carefully remove the dish from the steamer and pour off any excess liquid on the surface. Place on a rack to cool. Loosely cover and set at room temperature in a cool room until the next day, when it will be ready to eat.
Run a knife along the edge of the cake to loosen sides. Place a cake rack over the bowl and invert to unmold. Flip the cake right-side up onto the cutting board. Wrap the cake in plastic and refrigerate until ready to use.
When ready to eat, cut the cake into quarters. Cut each quarter crosswise, not into wedges, but into two 2-inch-wide strips. Cut each strip crosswise into scant 1/4-inch-thick slices. This is the typical way of slicing a cake Chinese style. Beat an egg in a small bowl, until frothy. Dip the slices in egg.
Heat a 14-inch flat-bottomed wok or skillet, over medium heat until hot but not smoking. Add just enough vegetable oil to barely coat the wok, add the egg-dipped slices in batches and cook 2 to 3 minutes per side, until golden brown. Serve immediately.

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