Friday, January 20, 2012

Festive feasting

We've been celebrating lots of 'firsts' in our new home and here's another - our first Chinese New Year.

It's always exciting to dress up a new home and this year, we've decided to go green. The red flowers are coxcombs, we bought them just because they looked so festive.

But more than just a new location, this CNY is different because my mother-in-law is living with us, meaning we get to see the CNY goodies being made (as opposed to previous years where we merely ate them, lol).

While we still buy most of the goodies, there are a few that my mil will faithfully make every year. Don't even think about asking her to buy them instead as none will be able to live up to her standards. Mind you, I'm not complaining!

Here she is, stirring the jelly. This jelly is a lot more work than the regular kind. Besides making the mixture, it needs to be sunned for several days to give it that crunchy texture.

Home-made pineapple tarts. If you've tried these, you'll never go back to the gummy, commercial ones.

Besides snacks, my mil also prepares specialty CNY foods, like these yam coins which will be pan fried with mushrooms during CNY.

But my favourite, hands down, is the carrot and pumpkin kueh. For the carrot kueh, radishes are grated...

... and then fried with meat and mushrooms.

These are then mixed with flour and put into large vats (these are the carrot kueh) and steamed.

Come CNY, the kueh will be sliced thinly and fried till crisp, then eaten with sweet sauce. This is our typical CNY breakfast and I love, love, love it, the pumpkin especially.

Andre's school badminton tournaments will take place just after CNY (who's crappy idea was that?) and the coach is already warning all the players to stay away from bak kua, soft drinks and prawn rolls.

I think she's fighting a losing battle. She needs to resign herself to the fact that she's gonna have a sluggish team on her hands. I've seen the kids - they love their food more than they love badminton.

Well, I reckon the little dragons are entitled to usher in their year with some festive feasting. Happy New Year, everyone and may the Dragon charge into your life bringing cheer and blessings!


Hopeful said...

I must say that your MIL must have worked hard to make all those goodies. And you're pretty hardworking yourself to have taken all those pictures and posting them up so soon after the first 2days of CNY! I think it's wonderful to have relatives who are still steeped in the old ways of making traditional foods - wish I had the time/energy/knowhow to do so myself. Happy CNY!

monlim said...

Hopeful: Happy CNY to you too! Yes, we're big on tradition and I guess since we're such foodies, we all benefit! Hopefully, we'll have the dedication to continue these practices even when the older generation is gone.

Anonymous said...

Nice preparation for CNY, makes CNY more traditional and fun and not just eat, play and be merry for most of us, including me!! :p

Wishing you & family a great dragon year!


monlim said...

Happy Dragon year to you too, QX! Although the holiday was short, hope you had a really fruitful celebration!

Anonymous said...

Happy Lunar New Year to you and your family! Wow so yummy. Is your mil Hakka? The only thing I dislike about this new year is the rain...Not nice to go house-visiting during rainy weather..

~ my

monlim said...

MY: Happy New Year to you too! My mil is a mixture of Hokkien, Teochew and Cantonese so she embraces every single custom, keke. Water Dragon mah, that's why the rain. It needs to make its presence felt!

Anonymous said...

Thanks Mon. Btw, I have not had a pineapple tart's amazing to hold out so long.... Staring at yours is definitely not helping....*cold turkey*


monlim said...

QX: Eat, eat, eat! What's CNY without a few goodies? Or forgo the pineapple tarts for some bak kua, hehe.

Make Me Genius said...

Wow! happy to come across a nice & fresh place. Your blog is so cool ,was tired of whole night working ,but your Blog & Happy kids photographs reminded me of my own family back home.Keep it up.God Bless You

monlim said...

MMG: Welcome! Do drop by often :)

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