Category Archives: kitchen tips

A Simple Creation For A Grand Chinese Festival.

Kawai or “ngah gu” in Cantonese is a type of bulbous vegetable that is only available during the transitional season between winter and spring. We can buy them from the market about a month before the Chinese Winter Festival or Dong Zhi (Tung Jiat in Cantonese). I know of two popular ways of eating this simple and delicious veg :-

i) steamed whole and then cut into slices to eat with waxed duck and sausages.
ii) stewed with Chinese leeks and meat (tastes equally good if preferred without meat) :up:

Kawai or ngah guHowever besides cooking, it can be transformed into some unique natural decorative art piece for the Chinese New Year. :idea: My mum always have pots of Kawai to add to the Chinese New Year Festive decorations and this is one regime I’ve taken over from her. I feel it really adds on a whole lot of traditional feel to the celebration yet takes very little effort to do. :cool:

Here’s how :

Start the sprouting about 25 days before CNY. Select the good ones with solid white good bulbs and a firm long stem. Clean and wash away the soil then soak them in a large container of water. Remember it is important to change the water daily during this time. After several days when shoots start to sprout, it’s time to transfer your creation to a proper decorative container to let it grow. Use decorative stone pebbles to support and hold the bulbs in place. Continue to top up with water every day.

By New Year’s time, I bet you’ll get a nice pot of beautiful green kawai to show-off. There you are totally your own creation to spruce up your Chinese decorations for the new year yet so simple to do and all it cost you is just a little bit of time and money. :yes:

Sprouting Kawai

By the way, I sprouted 8 bulbs and they’re now about an inch tall now. It’s a real satisfaction to watch their progress each time I change and top up the water. :grin:

Waste Not Want Not

During Chinese New Year, it is customary to bring mandarin oranges as gifts on visits. After the festival, I always seemed to end up with more oranges than what was bought. :?: We tried giving them away but with it so readily and cheaply available in the market, most people don’t care too much for it either. On our own, we aren’t exactly crazy over mandarin oranges. Instead of letting them rot and waste away, I decided to make jam with it. So the whole lot of it went into the pot and the end result was 6 bottles of delicious homemade mandarin marmalade jam. :roll:

Do share if you have any such experiences with ‘recycling’

So Yummy

The good old yummy crackerIn the old days, plain cream crackers and merry biscuits were 2 main types of healthy biscuits that most families stock at home for their kids. Today, we are spoiled for choice with all types of fanciful cookies and biscuits either imported or locally produced. However, we find that nothing matches the evergreen cream crackers. We have enjoyed it in different ways eat it plain as it is, dipped with coffee or with ice-cream to replace wafers. Try it out yourself and see if you enjoy it as much as we do. :grin: