Last year, I bought pussy willow to make the dutch home feel like Chinese New Year. Read > Here
This year, I did the same but more because I’m not gonna be in Singapore for Chinese New year which kinda sadden me, so, I’m gonna celebrate CNY the dutch way. 🙂
You know, it’s time like this you want to be with your family. Sometimes I wish one can be at two place at the same time or distance be made less noticeable. Anyway, don’t wanna get all emotional here. So, let me share with you the happy things. 🙂
There are a few things that are mandatory during Chinese New Year.A Sumptuous Reunion Dinner, Pussy Willows, Mandarin Oranges, Bak Kwa (Roasted Pork), Pineapple Tarts & Red Packet! Sadly, there are only a few I manage to achieve in order to make that dutch home looks almost Chinese New Year-Sy.
The easiest to achieve was Mandarin Oranges. The dutchies eats Mandarin as their daily fruit intake. So for that is it not new. The only thing is, the dutch mandarin are way smaller than those we have in Singapore which we import from China mainly. The size is at least double but not at all sweeter. So Dutch Mandarin 1 – 0 Chinese Mandarin.
Surprisingly since last year, pussy willows are easily available in the Dutch land. And it seems like they sell them during this period of the year. So I went back to the same florist I did last year to buy those pussy willow. They are still pink and pretty like they were. The pussy willows that we have in Singapore which are also imported mainly from China aren’t pink. They have really long stalk, so you will need some muscles to carry them home and a huge vase to place them. So Dutch Willow 1 – 0 Chinese Willow.
What is different this year is, I am here to watch it blossom!
Bar Kwa (Roasted Pork), Pineapple Tart & Red Packet are those that are not achievable. I realise I wasn’t allow to bring in any meat products while travelling back to Holland so i did not take the risk of smuggling some. I don’t know why I didn’t bring back any pineapple tarts, I’m just stupid. Now I am regretting it like a big time. And the dutchman won’t give me red Packet so I don’t have red packet as well 😦
Nevermind, I get over it. In order to make myself happy, I reckon I must at least have a reunion dinner kind of meal! So I send Jos a text while he is at work that we will have steamboat tonight. To my surprise, he didn’t ask what is that but readily said OK!
The typical kind of reunion dinner in Singapore are; go out to a fancy Chinese restaurant and be ready to spend a lot of money. Because these restaurant worked so that you can have your reunion dinner so naturally, their prices are way above the usual rates. Or, make your poor mother/father/grandparents whipped up a sumptuous feast of at least 6 dishes. These old people are usually really good with CNY food. I don’t know why. My mum is one very good cook but because she is now old, we usually eat out. I miss her cooking, she made delicious curry chicken, Soy Sauce Pork and many more. It’s time like this I miss her even more. Okay not because I’m hungry for food, more because it’s Chinese New Year and we should have reunion dinner together! So, anyway, I called her just before the new year and we have made a deal that she have to pass down her culinary skills to me!
The other kind of reunion dinner for the not so good cook is to have STEAMBOAT. And that’s clearly why I decided I will make do with Steamboat as a reunion dinner with my white man. All you need is a good soup base and everything else is dependent on what is your favorite. I love prawns, the huge ass ones. On the contrary, Jos hates prawn. So good, I have them all to myself and I bought a lot of it. Some nice cut meat (Chicken, Pork, Beef), some Shitake Mushroom, Some Fishballs (typical steamboat ingredient), Tofu maybe and whole lot of vegetables; bak choy, broccoli if you like and any others. In another words, it’s a steam pot with whatever you want. It’s so easy and it’s really yum! So here are the pictures of the ingredients for our steam-pot.
Did you spot the chinese chop sticks and spoon? I bought them from the chinese supermarket especially for this. I reckon it is important to make it as authentic as possible. 🙂
So that’s how I spend my first Chinese New Year in Holland. Not quite the same but okay.