I would like to introduce the newest member of our transient family. Please forgive me for being a little tardy. We have been hosting a student by the name of Kristy since January. Kristy will be staying with us until June so that she can attend University to further he English language studies.
When Kristy first arrived into our house she bought a present for me from Hong Kong, it was a Chinese Cookbook which was written in both Chinese and English so that we could both cook together. I asked her if she cooked in Hong Kong and she said “NO”. Only her mother cooks. She said “I can make nothing.”
Going through the cookbook there were a lot of interesting and yummy sounding dishes which I promised to try. For the first few months she didn’t venture into the kitchen but as she began to miss the food from her home the cookbook came out. Mr GG marked the Sweet & Sour Pork as the dish he wanted us to try first but as it turned out the dishes Kristy missed the most were ones her mother usually cooks.
The first dish she decided to try in my kitchen was a hot cucumber stir fry. It sounded very strange to have what we consider a salad item hot but I was looking forward to trying the dish. She also made a main of Chicken Choy Sum. This is a dish that I do make occasionally but I am guessing I wasn’t preparing it the way her mother does so she showed me how to make it correctly. I have to admit it tasted so much better than my version.
2 t/s vegetable oil
1 T/s ginger finely chopped
4 cloves garlic finely chopped
600gm chicken thigh fillet sliced
2 bunches choy sum
1 t/s sesame oil
1 T/s cornflour
2 T/s water
2 T/s soy sauce
2 T/s rice wine
Place all the “paste” ingredients in a small bowl and mix. Ensure there are no lumps, reserve for later.
Fry ½ the ginger and garlic in a hot wok, add the chicken and stir continuously until cooked.
Remove the chicken from the wok and reserve for later.
Add the remaining ginger and garlic to the wok, add the chopped choy sum and toss quickly until slightly wilted.
Return the chicken to the wok with the choy sum. Toss the two together.
Add the paste to the wok and stir until thickened. Serve with rice.
So it was now apparent that Kristy had been hiding a talent from us. She told us she was cooking purely by memory and taste, and she really didn’t think her dishes would be the same as her mothers but they were delicious.
In Hong Kong Kristy’s mother would cook rice and four other dishes each night for the family to eat. These dishes would usually include one vegetable, a seafood, chicken and an egg dish all served with rice. I am thankful my troops don’t want me to do all that!
Obviously I was not going to let this talent go to waste. We decided the next dish we would make together would be the Sweet & Sour Pork (as per hubby’s request), and that we would have a dinner party for all Kristy’s new university friends.
To be continued – Part 2 – Our “bring a plate” international dinner party for 24 people representing six countries.