Chinese New Year is this week and the party is already beginning!
I was born in Taiwan and although I was adopted to the United States at 5 months old, I have a strong pull to the Chinese culture and food. While I like most types of food, I tend to have a longing for Chinese food quite often. And I love finding a good, delicious, quick Chinese meal in the frozen section of my local store. There’s just something that is so delicious about a Chinese meal that doesn’t take much to prepare!
Because of my Asian culture and heritage, I like to make a big deal out of the Chinese New Year. It is a fun celebration and one day we hope to travel over to Taiwan and China and experience the incredible culture and celebrations that happen there. However, the food I create will have to do for now.
This year I decided to make one item and to purchase one item for part of our Chinese New Year celebration. I chose the Ling Ling Potstickers found in the Asian frozen food section of my local store. There are many Ling Ling choices including fried rice and noodles as well. These Ling Ling foods feel like we are being transported to Asia with different recipes from China, Japan, Korea, and Thailand.
The potstickers were an easy choice because they cook in the microwave and are quick and simple while still being delicious. We chose the chicken and vegetable potstickers. Plus it comes with an easy-to-warm sauce that has the perfect flavor to go with potstickers. The kids love them and my husband and I have to sneak some onto our plate before they’re all gone from the kids eating them!
The other choice I made to compliment the potstickers was to make Taiwanese Meatballs called Ba-Wan. They are made with a rice flour and a combination of meats inside served on cabbage (probably not really served on cabbage but it gets sticky, you’ll see). They are a fun, unique food to make, and unlike anything my family normally eats.
If you are looking for some delicious, easy foods to make for the Chinese New Year, these are two that you will definitely want to try. You can find Ling Ling foods at your local store here.
- 8 tablespoons rice flour
- 12 tablespoons sweet potato flour
- 5 2/3 cups water
- 1 pound rice flour
- 1/8 cup green onions
- 1 cup dried black mushrooms
- 1 pound pork tenderloin, ground pork, or other meat of your choice
- 1 can bamboo shoots sliced
- 1 pound shrimp
- 3 tablespoons soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 1 teaspoon pepper
- 1 cup rice flour
- 3 cups water
- 1/2 cup sugar
- soy sauce
- sweet chili sauce
In a large pot, combine 8 tablespoons rice flour, 12 tablespoons sweet potato flour, and water.
Cook on high while constantly stirring until it comes to a boil. Remove from heat and let cool. Add in 1 pound of rice flour and mix thoroughly. Set the wrapper dough aside.
Cook all meats.
Make sure to let the dried mushrooms sit in hot water for 10 minutes.
Combine all of the filling ingredients well and set aside.
I use cabbage leaves to put the wrapper dough onto. The dough is very sticky. Thoroughly wet your hands and place about 1/4 cup of the dough onto the cabbage. Use your wet fingers to make a well into the middle of the dough and place 1 shrimp, 1 mushroom, and more of the meat filling onto the dough. Use a little bit of dough from your pot to create a ball of dough and pinch the seams together to close the ball.
Continue until all of your dough is used.
Use a 2-tiered steamer or Chinese bamboo steamer. Fill the bottom with water and place as many ba-wans as possible in the steamer section. Steam for 10 minutes with the lid on top. Then continue to steam for 5 minutes.
Remove carefully from steamer and continue until all have been steamed.
Serve warm with desired toppings.
Combine the rice flour, water, and sugar in a small sauce pan. Bring to a boil, stirring continually, and then remove from heat.