Simply Celebrate Life!
Celebrate with a Pretty in Pink Asian themed setting!
Pretty in Pink
After setting the table for our annual Chinese New Year family dinner my daughter asked, “Mom, why does China like pink so much?” This was the perfect opportunity to teach her a little more about this celebration and my take on an Asian themed party as well as explaining to her why we as Americans even acknowledge thier traditions. My hopes are that my daughters will be aware of what’s on the other side of the world and appreciate and respect other cultures. I think I can do that best by starting with food!
Setting the Table
A pink cherry blossom branch inspired me to go the pink path rather than the traditional Chinese red and gold theme. I like how it all came together and thought this would even be a great ladies brunch party or even a pretty and pink birthday party. Well, I decided to try the birthday party idea for my daughter since it was only a week away and I really liked how my centerpiece worked for my 3 parties! Check theme out here, my Japanese Tea Party and A Baby Blessing.
Pink square plates and gold chargers gave that Asian feel.
Mr. Buddha was a friend of Ivanna’s. My friend claims he gives her lots of good luck so I wasn’t going to pass up a chance to set him at our dinner table and rub his belly for some luck of my own!
Adding demension to your table gives it interest and even more space. I added some height to a few of my dishes with a white square paper plate and a ceramic cup. A simple serving style to help bring more to the table.
I’m ready for tea anytime, so I was happy to bring out my cute china tea set which I happen to only use once a year. We folded our napkins to resemble fans and placed in our tea cups.
I took a trip to our local Asian market and had a great time exploring all those authentic foods. I was able to pick up a few things to add to my table and to my menu ingredients like chopsticks, soup spoons and my favorite Chinese 5 spice powder which seemed to give our dishes that true chinese flavor.
I love my simple yet versatile centerpiece. It’s made this month so much easier. I was able to conquer 3 parties within a month and all with this one centerpiece! Check out my Baby Blessing Celebration and my Japanese Tea Party for some fun ways to create your very own versatile party centerpiece.
I took a walk down to the creek and came back with this perfectly curved shaped branch. Yes, my husband just laughed at me but I knew I could turn it into something fun.
I ventured into the world of international cooking! I love new recipes, and even more so… EASY recipes with readily available ingredients. We love Chinese food so we tried our best to bring most of those flavors to the table. I have to admit I’ve never been able to get that Chinese restaurant style flavor but then again, are these American Chinese restaurants truly authentic? I guess I’m gonna have to take a trip to China and find out!
Here are a few new recipes I tried. Everyone liked them so they will definitely be keepers!
Baked Crab Rangoon
This was a great appetizer!
1 can(6 oz) white crabmeat drained, flaked
4 oz cream cheese softened
1/4 cup thinly sliced green onions
1/4 cup mayo
12 wonton wrapper
Heat oven to 350 degrees. Mix crab meat, cream cheese, onions and mayo. Spray mini muffin tins with cooking spray. Gently press wonton wrappers in each cup allowing edges to extend on sides. Fill evenly with crab mixture. Bake for 18 – 20 minutes or until golden brown and filling is heated through. Garnish with green onions if desired.
4 tsp vegetable oil
1-2 galic cloves crushed
8 oz minced ground pork
8 oz pak choi, shredded
4 1/2 tsp soy sauce
egg roll wrappers
oil for deep frying
Heat oil in a pan and saute garlic for 30 seconds. Add the pork and cook for 2 – 3 minutes. Add the shredded pak choi, soy sauce, and sesame oil, and cook for 2 – 3 min. more or until meat is done. Cool and set aside. Spread out your spring roll skins (I used egg roll wrappers) and spoon in the middle about 2 tbl of pork mixture. Roll up skins and brush with water to seal. Heat your oil for deep frying. Fry until golden brown. Drain on paper towel and serve with a chili sauce.
Egg Drop Soup
4 cups chicken broth
1/8 tsp ground ginger
2 T chopped fresh chives
1/4 tsp salt
1 -2 drops sesame oil
1 1/2 T cornstarch
1 egg yolk
Reserve 3/4 cup chicken broth and mix with the 1-1/2 tbl cornstarch. Pour the rest into the pot. Stir in the salt, ginger, chives and about 1 -2 drops of sesame oil. Bring to a rolling boil then add the cornstarch mixture. Whisk the eggs and 1 egg yolk then drizzle a little at a time into the pot. Eggs should cook immediately.
Chinese Almond Cookies
2 3/4 flour
1 cup sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking Soda
1 cup butter (2 sticks softened)
2 slighty beaten egg, seperate one for the glaze
1 tsp almond extract
about 1/3 cup whole blanches almonds, halved
Sift dry ingredients together in a bowl. Cut in butter till mixture resembles corn meal. Add egg and almond extract, mix well. Gather up with fingers and form a ball. Roll to slightly less than a 1/4 inch, cut with 2 in round cutter. PLace on ungreased cookie sheet about 2 inches apart. Place an almond half atop each cookie. Brush with beaten egg mixture. Bake at 325 degrees for 15-20 minutes.
Have a Fun Far East Celebration!