Happy New Year 2017!

We were fortunate enough to have my parents visiting for the New Year, which allowed me to be a little more ambitious for our New Year’s dinner.  I have been wanting to teach the girls how to make dumplings.  I still have fond memories as a child of all of us seated at the kitchen table making dumplings, talking and joking while making delicious food. These are the kinds of small traditions I want to pass on to my children, but it is a lot of work for just one person to prepare all of the ingredients and follow through, because, inevitably, children’s attention spans are short. With my mom in town, this eliminated a lot of these concerns as we have been working together for so long that it’s almost like second nature when we are together and making food.

We ended up making three different dumplings: shui jiao and guo tie (same style, just cooked differently), wontons and shumei. Can I just say, TASTY!!!!  To save time we bought the store-bought dumpling wrappers but made the filling from scratch. Making it fun for the kids, we had on child per adult and I had my daughters separate the he dumpling skins, spoon the filling, and put water around the perimeter of the hehe he skins for sealing.  My mom, husband and I wrapped the dumplings.  When they get older they can get more interactive, learning how to wrap the different types of dumplings.

Dumpling filling (for 5 packs of small, round dumpling skins):

2 lb ground pork

1 lb diced shrimp

2 lb chopped chives

4 stalks scallions, diced

4 slices Ginger, diced

2 T cooking wine

1 tsp white pepper

2 tsp salt

2 T cornstarch

4 T soy sauce

4 T sesame oil

Mix all ingredients together and let it sit for at least 30 minutes. Wrap away!

Happy New Year to all!


Return from the Motherland!

We returned from a 10-day, 15-hour (each way) plane ride from Taiwan last Wednesday evening with our extremely jet-lagged toddler in tow.  Can I just say that people know how to eat there?  I cannot believe for the amount of food people ingest there, that everyone is as skinny as they are.  Well, without further ado, here is a short photolog of the foods we had while there.  I hope you enjoy!


Fu Hang Do Jang (阜杭豆漿– nothing like a little Taiwanese creuller in a sesame pancake to start the day


Gua Bao (割包) – Taiwanese hamburger as modelled by my brother-in-law and wife


Chive Pancake with fresh warm soy milk


Nightmarket fare – shredded cuttlefish, sticky rice in bamboo leaves, Taiwanese Sticky Rice with Sausage (大腸包小腸), Taiwanese sausage, and Pepper Cakes (胡椒餅)


Spicy Hotpot (麻辣火鍋)


My daughter picking clams for lunch


Traditional shi-fan breakfast with fresh soymilk


Steamed chive dumplings


Yogurt drink at the family mart and my daughter enjoying one


Peanut soup with tofu curd and one of the many family feasts we enjoyed


My daughter enjoying starfruit and lembu