All right here it goes, my first blog post ever. Please bear with me as I’m still a blogging virgin (as some of you like to call it) teehee. So this weekend was quite the eventful weekend. I don’t mean eventful for me but eventful in the sense that there was a lot going on in town. It was Chinese New Years, Valentine’s Day, Family Day, and last but not least, Olympics on TV! We took the kids to Pagolac Restaurant (which I will most likely talk about more in another post) for some Vietnamese food. I ordered my usual pho. Then the kiddies collected some “hong bao” (red envelopes) for Chinese New Years. For those of you unfamiliar with the tradition, usually married couples will give red envelopes containing money to the younger generations. It doesn’t matter how much you put in the envelope, the amount is up to you. I’ve received all kinds of amounts from a piece of lucky candy to a $100 bill. After collecting the lucky money we stayed for the dragon dance.
For Family Day we went over to my brother’s house for some hot pot. My hubby Gary and I LOVE hot pot/Chinese fondue. The dinner was actually our suggestion but then my brother wanted to have it over at his house cause they just had a baby and they didn’t want to leave the house. So we were in charge of buying all the groceries and preparing everything. What is hot pot? Well basically its a bunch of raw food that you dump into a pot of boiling soup to cook. The ingredients are really up to you. For this dinner we got:
- salmon fillet
- slices of lean beef
- surf clams
- fish tofu (almost like fish balls but they are ground up fish meat and tofu made into small cubes)
- enoki mushrooms
- “tong oh” (a type of Chinese veggie)
- rice noodles
Keep in mind that everything is raw.
Here’s the table all set up and ready to hot pot. There were eight of us including our parents so we had two pots going.
The pot is set on a portable gas range just like the one you see below. The flame can be adjusted just like if you were cooking on your gas range at home. Once the soup comes to a boil you dump whatever you want to eat into the soup and wait till it is cooked. Once cooked the food can be scooped out into your own bowl. This is a continuous process. Throughout the whole dinner you keep adding food into the pot to cook and scooping it out once it is done.
This is the brand of soup base we like to use. You just dump it into the pot and add water to it. It’s basically beef and Chinese herb flavored soup.
One very important element to hot pot is the kind of sauce you use. We like to use XO sauce with some Kikoman soy sauce and sautéed green onions. The sauce can make all the difference to your whole dinner.
I guess we bought too much food cause there were leftovers so we took them home and had a second hot pot night. We ate all the green onions the night before so we had to saute 4 more batches for the sauce. A good tip for saving you some canisters of butane would be to heat up your soup on your home range/stove until it comes to a boil and then move the pot to the portable gas range.
Well there it is, my first blog post. Blogging virgin no more…woot woot! Although I’m no longer a blogging virgin, I’m still an amateur at this. It took me a whole week to finally get this blog up and running :-O. I still need to tweak some things such as the appearance and figure out how to add blogs to my blogroll. I hope you had as much fun reading this as I did writing it. Hopefully I’ll be able to get 3 or 4 blogs in per week but that all really depends on my kiddies. Hello and good-night blog world.