A weekend of Mum's cooking was in store. My mum was never the primary cook in our house, it was always my dad who did all the cooking. In fact, my mum was always the subject of jokes involving dinner cooking (shrieks, running for takeaway menus etc etc.) but clearly things have changed. The dinner we had was quite traditional, home-cooked Chinese food.
To start, we had pork and seaweed soup. Many Chinese households have a bowl of soup before dinner, usually a fish or meat broth with some vegetables. What you see next to this soup is a cold platter of shredded chicken, cucumber, jelly fish and steamed tofu. This was dressed with a sesame sauce (made just by mixing sesame paste and soy sauce) which I forgot to photograph.
Seaweed Soup & Chicken, Jellyfish and Cucumber Salad
These two dishes to start off with were a great mixture of textures. The jelly fish isn't at all fishy, but rather like eating rubber bands, while the tofu is very soft and jelly-like, and then the meatiness of the chicken and the crunch of the cucumber. Many flinch at the idea of eating jellyfish, but it is on many dim sum restaurant menus and is such a great texture. The soup was also flavoursome and light, perfect to start the meal with.
We had to have a breather before the mains, but also because they were dishes that really need to be cooked fresh. You can buy bags of deep-fried cubes of tofu, so you just need to cut them in half, hollow them out and stuff them with some fish paste, fry them, and then just add some garlic, chilli, coriander and a little slaked cornflour to make a gravy.
Fish-Stuffed Tofu, before cooking and after:
We had this with white rice, chilli and garlic fried prawns, and gai laan (Chinese broccoli).
Oh, I do get treated well.