With January sliding into February, thoughts move to one of the most globally celebrated events; Chinese New Year. This annual event is one of the highlights of the traditional Chinese calendar and is celebrated for two weeks every January/February, depending on how the dates fall on the lunar calendar. With over 4,000 years of history, it is more commonly known in China as the ‘Spring Festival’ and at two weeks long, is also the longest national holiday in China.
Events across the globe take place to celebrate the Spring Festival, with each day over the two weeks having a different significance and upholding different traditions. The first day sees a feast of favourite foods whilst drinking ‘Tu Su’ wine and setting off firecrackers. There are days to celebrate different animals, people, and foods in between, culminating with the lantern festival; 4 days of preparation lead up to a spectacular lantern show against the backdrop of a full moon with the lanterns celebrating new life in the coming year.
2019 sees the year of the Pig and here at Tenderstem®, we’re very excited for the upcoming Chinese New Year celebrations; not to mention the culinary delights that can be prepared in marking this occasion. From whipping up a fresh and clean stir fry, to sweet and sticky sauces, we’ve always been a fan of Asian cuisine and below are some of our absolute favourites for you to try this Chinese New Year:
As it’s the year of the Pig, we thought we should start with something pork-based, and this quick dish is simple, fresh and mighty tasty. Combining the savoury flavours of pork fillet and black bean sauce against the sweet and fresh flavours of Tenderstem®, you can serve this comforting meal with rice or noodles. For an extra bit of authenticity, sprinkle in some whole or chopped cashew nuts for a bit of extra crunch and bite.
Noodles are a staple of Chinese New Year and symbolise longevity, so this tasty chow mein is a perfect addition to your Spring Festival menu. Featuring the nutty undertones of groundnut oil, sharp and fragrant Shaoxing rice wine, hearty trips of sirloin steak, balanced out with sweet and fresh Tenderstem®. Once you’ve enjoyed this for Chinese New Year, this dish will be a go-to all year round.
If you have a little more time to spare, then this recipe is definitely worth it; combining fragrant ginger with perfectly crispy duck legs for a luxurious, yet fresh main meal. The key to this dish is ensuring that your duck legs are perfectly crispy, so if you want to nail this recipe, we recommend crisping the duck at home. It may take more time, but the flavours of freshly cooked crispy duck add extra depth to the dish. Duck tends to be a fattier meat, which is why our superstar Tenderstem® acts as the perfect balance, along with fresh orange juice, to cut through the rich duck and offset the flavours perfectly. If you’re looking to add an extra flourish, sprinkle over some fresh coriander, but don’t worry if it’s not your thing, this dish tastes great with or without.
Whether you’re planning on hosting a celebration at home or with friends, these recipes will act as the perfect addition to your Chinese New Year celebrations and prove great additions to your repertoire.
We have plenty more recipes for you to try, so check out all of the great ideas for cooking with Tenderstem® where you can even use our 'shop this recipe' feature to take the hassle out of finding your ingredients. Keep an eye out for this logo: