If coming to terms with it being 2014 is hard enough, imagine being Chinese – according to their calendar it’s 4712.
The New Year in China is an even bigger celebration than it is here, starting on the first of the month (today) and lasting for two weeks. If you’re thinking of getting involved there are events all over the UK, but you could also celebrate at home by trying some delicious Asian cooking.
This year is the year of the wooden horse which apparently makes it the year of quick victories, unexpected adventures, and surprising romances. With that in mind, we’ve come up with some recipes to cater for all those eventualities.
For a quick victory, try Jamie’s super-simple and quick Oriental pork noodles – with lots of authentic Chinese ingredients like chilli, ginger, beansprouts and soy sauce, it makes a delicious change to your midweek routine and takes less than 20 minutes to knock up. Families and friends will love it.
If you’re craving some adventure, try this exciting salad of roast five-spice duck with mango and pomegranate. That may sound a little bit out there, but it’s a killer combination that will convince you in one bite – it’s got sweetness and spiciness, crunchiness and softness, and is insanely addictive once you get stuck in.
If you’re looking for romance, Jamie’s fallen in love with steamed buns. You can find them in his restaurant Fifteen and his book Save With Jamie, where he stuffs them with leftover shredded pork. He’s also come up with this gorgeous steamed bun recipe, which combines soft sweet dough with a zingy Asian chicken filling. They may sound tricky, but with a bamboo steamer they’re easy and just as delicious as they sound.
So get inspired and try something new, and before you dig in, remember to say “Kung Hei Fat Choi” – a traditional New Year greeting meaning “may prosperity be with you”.