Sunday, February 07, 2016

reunion food

Discussion and argument on what to eat for our re-union dinner commenced more than a month before the event.

Steamboat or cooked dishes? Teng and I were all for cooked dishes. We think steamboat is boring.

As to cooked dishes, I took reference from last year’s report card. In the end, Gong Gong and Por Por called the shots.

Reunion dinner rating, again, in descending order of popularity (because I found last year’s post pretty useful):

Mum's red-bean soup with a tang-yuan (repeat dish): 10/10. I told Mum to buy one pack of glutinous rice balls (10 balls) because everyone will be too full. She insisted on buying two. Both packs were polished off as some people ate as many as three balls as they wolfed down their soup.

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Stir-fried kalian with liberally-strewn abalone (repeat dish): 9/10. It was just the first dish to disappear. I would like to add that the row of abalones were placed by me, and that was my sole contribution to the reunion dinner. 

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Pig stomach soup with pork, cabbage, bai guo and water chestnut (repeat dish): 9/10. So good my mother-in-law dabao-ed a packet of soup for her meals the next day (she doesn’t go out at all on the first day of CNY and no one visits).

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Samsui lettuce-wrapped chicken with ginger sauce from Soup Restaurant (repeat dish): 8/10. Choon’s first taste of this dish. He’s never had it. He likes the chicken with the ginger sauce, even without the lettuce.

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Home-made Ngoh Hiang (new dish): 8/10. I’m no fan of Ngoh Hiang and kept telling Mum not to make it. She did and it was snapped up pretty quickly. I’m just biased against Ngoh Hiang.

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Steamed fish (new dish): 7/10. This was good but it came out so late (because its steamed last and we start eating so the other dishes won’t get cold), that people were already quite full. My mother-in-law dabao all the remaining fish (mostly the head) back home, presumably to accompany her soup.

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Stewed black mushrooms with “hair” and dried oyster (repeat dish): 5/10. Good but keep-able so not much was eaten.

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Chilli tamarind prawns (new dish): 2/10. This dish was the biggest point of contention. We were strongly against prawns cooked in shells because history has shown that no one touches it. But Mum said prawns sound like laughter in Cantonese (Hee “Ha” Dai Siu) and is a must-have dish as a symbol of happiness in the new year. We said cook it without its shell. Gong Gong said it’s not nice and all the prawns would shrivel up. So they did the same old thing. True enough, no one touched it.

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The family. This is the first year the three kids all join the Main Table, and are not sitting on a side table watching TV in the living room. They've graduated!

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* Jo, Teng, KK's brother, Tata, Day, KK, Nene, Choon, Gong Gong (missing Por Por and me and Lulu)

At the back of house, the able cook who shouldered the entire reunion dinner burden:

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That was a joke. He just pushed prawns around for a minute. The REAL cooks:

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* Jai and Por Por

And at the front of house, the “Restaurant” manager who kept everyone entertained. (he does the same thing every year. Talk and talk and talk about how to keep healthy – this year the theme was Every Year after 70 is a Blessing! – while KK’s relatively sedate family nod in agreement.)

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My three lovelies, not paying attention to Gong Gong at all...

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2 comments:

Dawn said...

I thought you love prawns? judging from the prawns you ate at our CNY reunion dinner..or is it cos its deep fried and crispy thats why you liked it?

Sher said...

i DO like prawns! but i cant eat the prawns all alone. the people at our reunion dinner are not prawn fans, so its not a good "group" dish.