The Year of the Dragon, according to the Chinese calendar, will be upon us in about 2 weeks from now. This is when the feasting gets really serious. Many popular restaurants around town are already almost booked out for the Chinese New Year festivities. It has become a popular trend here, among urban folks, to just bring the entire family out for a grand feast or two or more, starting with the must-have Reunion Dinner and continue with more meals throughout the 15-day celebration.
Of course, the must-have item in any Chinese New Year meal here is the Yee Sang. A colourful dish of shredded vegetables, fruits, crackers and a “sang” (raw) item – usually fish… all tossed together with a dressing/sauce, lime juice and some oil. The Chinese believe that the higher you toss the Yee Sang, the better it is for you to garner good fortune, abundance of luck and just about everything your heart desires!
Recently I had an opportunity to sample some of the Chinese New Year offerings at One World Hotel. From 9 January to 12 February 2012, Yee Sang and Chinese New Year specialties will be served daily for lunch and dinner at their Zuan Yuan Chinese Restaurant.
We tried the Yee Sang with Polo Clams and Shredded Sweet Turnip in Truffle Oil. The clams were sweet and the truffle oil was very fragrant, giving this yee sang a very different twist.
Zuan Yuan Chinese Restaurant celebrates with 4 types of yee sang served with seaweed and assorted fresh fruits, salmon and sweet turnip, salmon with sweet turnip in truffle oil; and sliced abalone with snow pear.
Yee Sang with Seaweed & Assorted Fresh Fruits RM55++ (half portion) RM110++ (full portion)
Yee Sang with Salmon & Shredded Sweet Turnip RM70++ (half portion) RM140++ (full portion)
Yee Sang with Salmon & Shredded Sweet Turnip
In Truffle Oil RM85++ (half portion) RM170++ (full portion)
Yee Sang with Sliced Abalone & Snow Pear RM90++ (half portion) RM180++ (full portion)
Priced from RM55++ per half portion for eat-in or takeaway.
No Chinese New Year meal can be complete without a fish dish. Called “yue” in Cantonese, this rhymes with another word which means “good tidings” so the more “yue” you consume during Chinese New Year, the more good tidings will come your way! The Steamed Red Garoupa we had was doused with “Medan” sauce – a sauce which is sweetish, spicy, sourish and very red in colour. Yes, red is good, red is auspicious!
Like the fish, prawns is another must-have item because its name in Cantonese “har” goes with “hee hee har har”… meaning lots of laughter… and we do need lots of that, don’t we? Not only during Chinese New Year, but every day of our lives, LOL! The Wok-Fried Tiger Prawns with Papaya and Milk came in a glorious shade of orange, thanks to the addition of papayas which also enhanced the creaminess of the sauce sticking to the prawns.
Poached Chicken Village with Pickled Radish and Chilli was the next item on the menu…
My favourite was the Stewed Mixed Vegetables with Beancurd Parcels, Dried Oysters and Sea Moss… everything has been infused with the sweetness of the plump oysters. I can eat this over and over again during Chinese New Year! Oh by the way, oysters is another “compulsory” item because its Cantonese name “hoe see” rhymes with “good things” and that surely sounds good… everybody needs good things every day!
The above dishes are available in Zuan Yuan’s Prosperity Menu at RM988++ per table for 8-10pax.
The most popular rice dish for this season… Steamed Fragrant Rice with Assorted Waxed Meats is available upon order. This is the time to dig-in into this mountain of carbs, flavoured by the smoky aroma of waxed meats.
So, if you don’t have time to cook up your own Reunion Dinners at home, perhaps you would like to check out what Zuan Yuan has to offer:
Reunion Joy Set Menus
14 – 22 January 2012
3 reunion set menus priced from RM1288++ per table of 8 – 10 persons are available serving delectable dishes such as Salmon Yee Sang with Sweet Turnip, Braised Shark’s Fin Soup with Crab Meat and Dried Scallop, Zuan Yuan Crispy Roasted Chicken and Duck, Steamed Giant Grouper with Tangerine Skin in Light Soya Sauce, Wok-Fried Jumbo Tiger Prawn with ‘Ma La’ Spicy Sauce, Stir-Fried Australian Scallop with Lily Bulb, Honey Pea and Macadamia Nut, Steamed Fragrance Rice with Assorted Preserved Meat, Chicken Sausage and Yam in Lotus Leaf, Chilled Honey Date with Aloe Vera and Dried Longan; and Deep-Fried ‘Nian Gao’ with Pumpkin in Salted Egg Yolk.
Once the Dragon Year has been ushered in, Zuan Yuan has these to offer:
Dragon Feast Set Menus
23 January – 12 February 2012
Zuan Yuan’s specially designed menus priced from RM988++ per table of 8 – 10 persons. Feast on auspiciously named dishes that will herald in prosperity, wealth, health and all good things in life.
Vivacious offerings include Braised Shark’s Fin Soup with Shredded Abalone and Dried Scallop, Wok-Fried Tiger Prawn with Papaya and Butter, Braised Dried Scallop with Dried Oyster, Sea Moss in ‘Lou Han’ Bean Curd Parcel with Garden Greens; and Steamed Red Spotted Grouper with Wood Fungus and Red Date. For dessert, Zuan Yuan’s Home-Made Deep-Fried ‘Nian Gao’ with Pumpkin and Salted Egg Yolk is not to be missed.
When I was there last week, their home-made “Nian Gao” wasn’t available yet – what a bummer! I must go back there, just for this!
OK, if you don’t feel like having a full-course meal for Lunch, you can also check out their Dim Sum:
Festive Lunar Dim Sum (Lunch only)
23 January – 12 February 2012
What better time to gather the clan for ‘yum cha’ than during the lunar festive season? Zuan Yuan’s special Festive Lunar Dim Sum is only available once a year from 23 January till 12 February.
Revel in savoury and sweet creations such as Steamed Seafood Dumpling with Herbal Ginseng Soup and Shark’s Fin, Steamed Shanghai Siew Loong Pau with Crab Roe and Meat, Steamed Glutinous Rice with Chicken, Pacific Clam, Mushroom and Abalone Sauce in Lotus Leaf, Steamed Beijing ‘Sui Gao’ with “Loong Cheng” Tea, Steamed “Fen Guo’ with Assorted Vegetable, Deep-Fried Prawn Spring Roll with Australian Scallop, Oven-Baked Puff Pastry with Lotus Paste and Salted Egg Yolk and Double-Boiled Almond Juice with Bird’s Nest.
Priced RM13++ per portion. Available for lunch only.
Zuan Yuan remains open on the eve of Lunar New Year and throughout the 15 days of the Lunar New Year.
Lunch : 12 noon to 2.30 pm
Dinner : 6.30 pm to 10.30 pm
For reservations at Zuan Yuan, please call 603-7681 1159.
@ One World Hotel
Bandar Utama City Centre
47800 Petaling Jaya