The traditional pairing of peas and carrots are brought bang up to date in this chicken sweet and sour dish!
“Traditionally we sit down to a meal at a round table as this is considered the most auspicious shape, since it allows good energy to flow smoothly. We might start with an appetiser such as pickles (to stimulate the taste buds) or soup. However soup may also be served with the other main dishes. Instead of a main course, several different dishes are served like a banquet. Its very much a communal affair with everyone serving themselves from shared dishes. As a sign of respect the head of the family (or our guest) will have the opportunity to serve themselves first. Food is prepared in bite-sized pieces (e.g. vegetable, meat, doufu), ready for direct picking up and eating. If we have fish they are served whole, and we directly pick pieces from the fish with our chopsticks to eat. In China we consider it bad luck to turn the fish over as this symbolises the fishermen’s boat turning over in the sea. The head of the fish is usually turned towards the host , or as a sign of respect to the guest. For dessert, we normally prefer fresh fruit, the more seasonal the better. When we do want something sweeter we eat desserts such as glutinous rice buns filled with sweet and savoury ingredients, from taro to sweet red bean paste. At the end of our meal we drink tea to aid digestion. Do remember that its considered bad manners to cross your chopsticks and can even be seen as bad luck!” Yuan Wang