Enough of the General Tso chicken and fried rice! Chinese New Year’s is a celebration of the Lunar New Year and Spring. Chinese New Year is the most important holiday and China and it brings the whole family together for feasting. Do yourself a favor and venture out past your usual Chinese-American food order and try something new and authentically Chinese. This is the time to be bold and adventurous. Here are 5 dishes to help you on your journey to discovering food from the far east.
Instead of lo mein, try ordering chow fun instead. Beef chow fun hails from Guangdong in southern China made from stir-frying beef, hor fun noodles and bean sprouts. Chow fun, or stir-fried hor fun noodles, is any number of different individual preparations. The flat, wide rice noodles cooked in a perfectly light coating of sauce really is delicious. Less saucy than many other Chinese dishes, chow fun is an excellent choice that combines good noodles and a great protein like beef, chicken, tofu, or shrimp.
Xiao long bao
Xiao long bao is a popular dish from Shanghai which consist of steamed soup-filled dumplings. They come hot from a bamboo basket in set of four, six or ten. The dipping sauce is deliciously vinegary with a slight hint of soy sauce. Get ready for the flavor to explode in your mouth with the juicy pork broth. It takes time to graduate to a pro-level and ensure that none of the broth falls out from your spoon.
Dan dan mein
Dan dan mian better known as Dan Dan Noodles is one of the best ubiquitous street foods of Sichuan. Picture this, thin noodle served in a spicy and savory sauce topped with peanuts, crispy pork and chili oil. Just stir in the ingredients on top of the noodles and be quick with the chopsticks slurping everything down. Watch out for the Szechuan peppercorns they are tongue-numbing and an experience.
If you haven’t tried dim sum (or Chinese breakfast) this is your path. Try shumai a type of traditional Chinese dumpling, that comes from Hohhot. This steamed pork and shrimp dumplings can also be combined with minced scallop or crab meat. A savory filling is tightly wrapped with a thin layer of dough that is then steamed in bamboo baskets. This brunch food will leave you full for days.
Hot pot is definitely a favorite among Chinese. It refers to more the method of cooking rather than a particular dish. Hot pot consists of one big central soup in the middle with a burner undredeath to ensure that the stock is piping hot. Guests dip their ingredients into the broth typically meat and vegetables to their desired doneness. It is a fun communal experience that brings friends and family together around a meal. Once the broth is nice and flavorful, you typically finish it off by dumping the broth atop fresh noodles.