Chinese New Year recipes to inspire you to try new flavours at home, from everyone's favourite, crispy duck pancakes, to ginger and chilli prawns, Chinese-style crispy pork belly and sticky chicken.
Chinese New Year falls on Thursday 19 February 2015, when it will become the the year of the goat. You might be up for recreating a full Chinese banquet, but it gives us a great excuse to experiment with new flavours and see how easy it can be to recreate your favourite takeaway at home.On the plus side, making your own Chinese food means you can make it lighter and healthier, but keep those bold flavours. Many of our favourite Chinese recipes work well as sharing plates, so make the perfect choice for a casual dinner party or family dinner. More often than not, it's all in the preparation, so you can make these recipes ahead so you can have a fuss-free evening.
Chef Ken Hom always spends Chinese New Year in London, where he celebrates by cooking with friends. "People have banquets at home, they celebrate at home by cooking big meals with their families," he says. "But also, they go out to celebrate - if you're feeling lazy, you go out to celebrate at a Chinese restaurant. They have special foods that they serve. Usually, at Chinese New Year, you must have fish - it's very important because fish is a sign of prosperity. It's de rigueur to have noodles because they are a sign of longevity - and you mustn't cut your noodles because you don't want to cut your life short.
"We eat this special dish, which is a cured oyster with sea moss, which is like a seaweed - it looks like somebody's toupee fell in tot he soup or something, but it tastes really good. The two together means good things and prosperity. We still maintain some of the those superstitions."
For the authentic flavours we all know and love, homemade crispy duck is a special way to start a Chinese feast, whether you prefer it rolled up with crisp cucumber and spring onions or in a light salad with hoisin dressing. See how to make it with our authentic crispy duck pancakes recipe
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