Sunday, January 11, 2009

Chinese New Year-Loose Leaf Tea, Wine, Food, and Friends

Kung Hei Fat Choy!

You guessed it, that’s Happy New Year in Cantonese. The Tea Drinker and I plan to celebrate this Chinese New Year with inviting our friends over for a dinner party. We will drink quality loose leaf teas, sip interesting wines, and nosh on tasty Chinese food; all in the spirit of this cherished Chinese holiday. Instead of a Festival Parade, we plan to share photos from our trip to China this past summer. Besides, if we paraded around the neighborhood at night carrying lanterns, this might confirm suspicions that the Tea Drinker and his wife are truly bonkers…

Chinese New Year starts with the New Moon on the first day of the New Year, and ends on the full moon, 15 days later. The 15th day is the Lantern Festival, which is celebrated at night with a parade. The Chinese year 4707 begins on January 26, 2009. This is the year of the Ox. People born in the Year of the Ox are said to be obstinate, eccentric, and inspire confidence in others. Check out what year you were born in:

Want to have a Chinese New Year Dinner Party, too? Here’s how:

How To:
Invite 12 people- to celebrate each month of the upcoming year
Decorate in red & gold, symbolizing a bright future that is prosperous
Plan your menu, select loose leaf teas, Chinese beer, and white wine with a lot of acidity
Use chopsticks, hang lanterns, and light candles
Order recommended teas from
Enjoy, celebrate, and laugh, a lot!

Chinese New Year 4707 Menu:

Spicy Chicken Wings
Shrimp Dumplings
Monkey Picked Oolong- * A wonderful Chinese tea whose name always provokes conversation.

Chinese Family Style:
Drunken Crab with Ginger Sauce
General Tso’s Chicken
Barbequed Mongolian Lamb Skewers
Dan Dan Noodles
Jasmine Rice
Organic Jasmine Pearl, Chinese Green * A popular tea served in Chinese restaurants. Want to serve wine? Chill down a nice Riesling, or Gewürztraminer.

Green Tea Ice Cream
Fortune Cookies
Golden Pu-erh*A great digestive tea and it will not keep you up all night.

I adapted most of the recipes from FEAST, The best of Yan Can Cook, by Martin Yan. If you are interested in them, please post your request here on my blog, and I will be happy to share them with you.

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