On Saturday, I decided to have a get together with my family for a steamboat lunch. I had seen an episode (actually many episodes of it) of Kylie Kwang’s Cooking with Heart and Soul’s Steamboat Recipe. During the Chinese New Year period, I bought an electric steamboat at Giant, together with the many hundreds of Chinese families who were busy buying their ingredients and carrying the same electric steamboat as me. I even remember the pleasant small talk with the couple right in front of me at the check-out counter. They were so pleased I was buying one, thinking that I too would be celebrating the New Year and proceeded to tell me the merits of eating steamboat.
Anyway, I searched the internet and found Kylie’s recipe here. I followed her recipe, omitting all those that called for Shaoxing wine, and some Australian concoction called ‘Chinese BBQ sauce’.
The little steamboat party was a success! The only problem was, I felt sick at the end of the day. I’m not much of a seafood person so by dinner time, eating the same thing again, made me feel rather queasy. I understand now why my Chinese friends only do this elaborate steamboat thing once a year. And this year will be the last year I’ll ask students to write in their journals of their New Year Celebrations. I won’t be salivating at the mention of steaming broth and tons of raw seafood and meat for a long long time.
I think I overkilled the whole dish. There was an overabundance of food, and my colleagues told me I should never have followed Kylie’s recipe. They would always serve steamboat un-marinated and with plain rice. But no, I made ginger fried rice. And I baked chicken wings Chinese-style. Here’s a list of the food I served that day.
1. Ginger Fried Basmati Rice
2. Chinese-Style Baked Chicken Wings
a) boiled quail eggs
d) Shitake mushrooms
e) A huge plate of green leafy vegetables (Bai Cai)
f) Squid (marinated in de-seeded red chilli, oil and sugar and salt)
g) Cod Fish Slices (marinated in chopped coriander stems, oil, sugar, fish sauce)
h) Shabu-Shabu Beef (marinated in szechuan peppercorns and salt)
k) baby corn
l) fried ngoh hiang and some other tofu-like with filling thing (from NTUC)
n) roasted sliced duck breast (frozen, from NTUC)
It was fun nonetheless and I wish Last Aunt and her brood could be here with us. Next time then. (But not steamboat)