This last year has seen some of our biggest feasting events change face almost entirely. From Thanksgiving through to Christmas, we’ve all had to change the amounts we cook, and even our entire meal plans. Now, with those big hitters out the way, many are turning their attention to the next big feasting occasion – Chinese New Year.
As well as elaborate festivals and parties, this February 12th celebration is typically accompanied by a feast fit for royalty. For obvious reasons, this year is likely to be an altogether more quiet affair as safety dictates that large gatherings are off the cards. Luckily, that doesn’t mean you need to set aside your Chinese feast dreams altogether.
As with Thanksgiving and co., plenty of people are still intending to pull out all the stops. You can join them by simply reassessing some key factors of your feast. Most notably, you’ll want a whole lot less food!
For some, this is the year of ordering takeout instead of slaving in the kitchen, but restaurants are sure to be busy. Instead, you might want to consider these feast pointers to see your table full and your party unforgettable despite restrictions.
Focus on favorites
While there’s nothing to stop you from still enjoying a feast, you don’t want to fill your bin with wasted food in the aftermath. With that in mind, focus on making a few favorite essentials rather than a dozen dishes. Staples like chow mein, black bean sauces, and dishes that cover all your meats such as satay chicken, crispy beef, etc., are guaranteed to be plenty for your smaller party. And, limiting your menu means you may well enjoy eating the spoils more than you normally do!
Make plenty of snack foods
While a big party can easily demolish substantial meals, a smaller gathering may struggle to get through the heavy stuff. As such, it’s worth limiting your dishes as mentioned, and bulking the rest of the feast with snacky bits. Luckily, the Chinese do snacks incredibly well, as this spring roll recipe from Feasting at Home attests. These, alongside options like prawn toast and dumplings, are guaranteed to go down better in 2021. At least this way people can pick all night instead of having to eat a feast’s worth in one sitting.
Keep storage in mind
Even with your best efforts to limit the spread, you may end up with more leftovers than other years. But, by focusing on storage beforehand, you can still eliminate the risk of substantial waste. Cook meals that you know you can freeze safely, or focus on snacks that will keep in the fridge for at least a few days. That way, you can enjoy the occasion for a long while after the big night, and make sure that your feast is still worth making.
However you’re celebrating this year, remember that you can still have an amazing night with these pointers in mind. And, while it’s a little early, may we wish you a very merry Chinese New Year!