This is an overdue post from the CNY holidays. Our family gathered at one of my relative’s house for a seafood feast. We certainly went all the way and no expense was spared as the whole meal was so luxurious with precious seafood. Mother in law (MIL) was generous to cook up this lavish feast for all of us to enjoy!
**Beware of drooling pictures coming up…J
Check out our spread of homemade goodies...we needed two tables to spread them out.
Second table of goodies…I had a hard time deciding which table to sit…being the kiasu me!
Being a typical Chinese family, of course, soup is a must for my family. If there is one dish that is always on our table each day, it is a good pot of homemade soup! There is nothing more comforting than homebrewed soup which can really whet our appetites and sooth our tiredness each day during dinner. One can drink at peace knowing that all ingredients are natural, clean and without the amount of msg often used out in the market. Therefore, when it comes to a special holiday occasion, MIL spared no expense and prepared us a lavish double boiled soup fit for royalty.
MIL bought two types of abalones for this soup as she wants to experiment on which type taste better. The huge whole abalone in the picture is from
. There are another small ones, which has been sliced up, are from Mexico . Verdict? New Zealand abalones are tastier. She also added some kind of clams and plenty of dried scallops. One more sumptuous ingredient is the cordyceps. It’s the dark shriveled caterpillar looking stick on the left of the picture. MIL said this soup is good for health because of the cordyceps which has so many health healing values. Mexico
This is my precious bowl of the final soup! I had two bowls of goodness. J
Soup was double boiled for about 7 hours on really low fire to bring out the clear lusciousness of the ingredients. The soup was really superb and full of the seafood flavors. Savory and warm, the soup has the aroma of the ocean from all the lavish seafood and really brought a sense of indulgence to all of us. At this moment, I really felt as if I m the luckiest person on earth…kekeke.
Sea cucumber pieces was lightly blanched and taken out of the soup to not over cook it. We only added the pieces of this in our soup once it was ready to serve.
Braised Fish Maw, Sea Cucumber, Mushroom and Pork Trotter were another magnificent dish from MIL. Braised for few hours on low fire, the flavor was robust and hearty. I love fish maw and certainly indulged quite a few pieces of this yummy seafood with its essence. Sea cucumber was average for me as I feel that these were not as tasty as the fish maw. This dish is a favorite among the elderly family members.
Castrated chicken or ‘Yim Kai’ was steamed and chopped up to pieces. I was shocked when I was told this is castrated chicken….hahaha. I mean can you imagine how to castrate a chicken and who discovered this? The price you pay for this also shocked me! A whole ‘Yim Kai’ can cost more than RM200 alone. Eh…I rather pay for seafood for that price. Apparently, I am told that this special chicken has a deeper and more intense flavor of chicken smell and the meat is firm and tasty. Unfortunately, this one we had was not as what I expected. It kind of fall short on the taste and the appearance did not look that great because it should have a smooth and natural yellow skin with white meat. MIL commented that she may have been con on this purchase because she had tasted some before and they were really excellent.
Family’s secret recipes sauce for steamed chicken which is made from fresh shallots, chilies, soy sauce and other secret ingredients…wink wink!
Steamed 7-Star Garoupa was contributed by uncle and again another expensive fish. Despite me being a foodie, I am really clueless on fishes and their prices. Simply steamed with ginger shreds and tomatoes, the fish was really sweet with a firm meat texture. Nice for elderly people but I prefer a stronger tasting sauce …hehehe J
Blanched Kai Lan provided us with some greens for that meal. Simply blanched and doused with soy sauce, this veggie is unpretentious goodness.
Stuffed Eggplants and Chilies were made by auntie and these were full of fresh fish paste, stuffed to the max, and pan fried with garlic and its own juices. These were gone in a few minutes and many requested auntie to make more the next round. One word…divine!
Stuffed ‘Foo Chuk’ or Beancurd Sheet was another popular dish from auntie. The fish paste was really fresh and bouncy, hence this really enhanced the whole dish to another level. Crispy and savory, I really cannot stop eating this dish.
Auntie also made Stuffed Taufu Pok with the same fish paste and this was another crowd favorite. I am told auntie also makes a mean Sui Kow, hence everyone requested for another round of makan for just these stuffed goodies!
Blanched Lettuce was our second veggie dish that was effortless but comforting.
I always like to save the best for last! Our glorious star of the night was the Steamed Fresh Tiger Prawns with Ginger and Wine. Contributed by uncle, these crustaceans are humongous! I cheekily asked uncle if these are mutated prawns as the sizes really amaze me…hahaha. Minimal ingredients are added to this to really showcase the sweetness of the prawns. Sweet and full of orange hued roes, there was a fight among us to savor these crustaceans.
Check out the size of the prawn compared to my bowl of rice! I am not joking about the size…muahaha! Tastier than lobster meat in my opinion, the prawn was juicy, luscious and out-of-this-world. I had two pieces of these giant crustaceans. J
I really went to heaven and back with this meal….hahaha! I am blessed and thankful for this experience. A big Thank You to my MIL and relatives for all the effort in preparing this magnificent meal.
Leaving you with a quote that really summed up my food journey:
“One cannot think well, love well, sleep well, if one has not dined well.”
- Virginia Woolf
Life is simple and food is what makes me happy! What about you? J