This post was sponsored by Ling Ling, all opinions expressed in my post are my own.
Celebrate the year of the dog with Chinese Hot Pot at Home.
It is important to us that we teach our children about various cultures from around the world. One of our favorites is observing Chinese New Year. We follow a variety of Chinese customs and traditions in our home. We follow customs greeting friends with oranges to make sure our friendship stays intact and passing out red envelopes with money in them to start the year with prosperity. We have created some of our own traditions, including eating Chinese Hot Pot.
What is Hot Pot?
Hot Pot is a soup of sorts that we first became familiar with in Malaysia back in 2001. There it is called Steamboat, but the premise is the same. It is a pot of boiling broth that is placed in the center of the table for everyone to access. Fresh ingredients are placed into the soup base to create a meal. These fixings include protein, vegetables, and noodles.
We like hot pot so much that we have it on a weekly basis in our house. It is fun because everybody gets to cook what they want in the community pot but it can be changed up from week to week.
Chinese Hot Pot Recipe
First, you need some kind of pot to boil your broth in. We have a dedicated hot pot cooker that happens to be electric, but many people use a pot on a gas burner. Ours has a divider in it so that we can have two different types of hot pot going at once. This is a great option for vegetarians or other dietary restrictions.
Our pan is filled with water and a packet of soup base. Traditional Chinese Hot Pot has a spicy soup base. We are not big fans of super spicy so we use a mild broth. We have spicy sauces on the side for those who like a little more kick.
While the broth is heating up, we chop the ingredients and prepare our favorite sides such as potstickers and steam buns.
We start out by chopping our vegetables. Our favorites are carrots, broccoli, sweet potato, edamame, and cabbage. Other vegetables that can be used are mushrooms, tomato, corn, and other leafy greens such as Chinese spinach.
Then we prepare our proteins. These include fish balls, thinly sliced beef or lamb, luncheon meat, or tofu. We will also use eggs.
The kids love to dip noodles in the broth. We use Asian egg noodles or rice vermicelli. They also like rice balls or cakes.
Cooking Hot Pot
Once the ingredients are chopped and the soup base is boiling, start putting in your food to cook. We will place the items that need longer to cook, such as the root vegetables, first. It is important to use different utensils for putting food into the hot pot than to eat with. Different colored chopsticks or utensils are good to use.
We use one color of chopsticks for adding vegetables and a different color for meat. Several sets of red chopsticks are set out, which we only use for eating. We never dip the red chopsticks in the soup.
Hot Pot Cuisine
A fun thing about hot pot is it can be a little bit different for everybody that is gathered around the table. Our daughter loves eating broccoli, which cooks quickly. My husband loves canned luncheon meat. I cook a few eggs into the boiling broth boil in the water. I love runny yolk over the cooked vegetables. Our sons like the meat and noodles, along with the extra sides that we serve.
Everyone’s favorite side dish is potstickers, which are also known as dumplings. Each week I pick up a package of Ling Ling Pork & Vegetable Potstickers. Ling Ling brings the flavors of Asian into your home with their delicious ingredients. We love the dipping sauce that is included with the potstickers.
In addition to a variety of potstickers, Ling Ling creates tasty noodles and fried rice. Ling Ling Asian Foods are found in the freezer section of your store.
Celebrating Chinese New Year
Chinese New Year starts next week and it is going to be the Year of the Dog. We will be enjoying a feast of hot pot, potstickers, steamed bun, and oranges.
Another special tradition that we started our family is each year our daughter gets a stuffed animal that corresponds to the zodiac. Here is the cute dog that she gets this year.
What sort of Chinese New Year traditions do you take part in? Make this year more memorable with sides from Ling Ling.