2011 Menu revealed for Gung Haggis Fat Choy Robbie Burns Chinese New Year Dinner

Steamed Wild Sockeye Salmon – new feature for 2011 Menu + new style of haggis won ton

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Bagpipers Trish and Allan McMordie are hungry for wild sockeye salmon – photo T.Wong

It was January 26th, the day after Robbie Burns Day.  We had our taste-test dinner music rehearsal tonight… and are very happy!
Good music and good food – what could be better?  This is a great way for us to ensure that both food quality and music quality is a high standard. 

There are always changes for the dinner menu for the Gung Haggis Fat
Choy Robbie Burns Chinese New Year Dinner.  We try to vary the dinner
items from year to year, add some new surprises, take out items we are
bored with.  !  We have added a new dish – steamed wild sockeye salmon. We have brought back long life E-Fu Noodles and we have created a new look to the Haggis & Shrimp deep-fried won ton.

Vegetarian dishes?  Lots of them… We alternate vegetarian and meat dishes. My mother complains if there aren't enough vegetarian dishes.  Good thing she also eats fish!  If you are looking for beef…. It's in the haggis.

1. Floata Appetizer Platter

a. Haggis Pork dumpling (Shiu Mai)
b. Turnip cake (Lo-bak-goh) Vegetarian
c. Honey BBQ Pork
d. Jelly Fish

2. Deep fried haggis & shrimp won ton – NEW LOOK
3. Vegetarian Winter Melon Soup
4. Traditional Haggis – Beef
5. Diced Vegetable with Lettuce Wrap
6. Steamed Wild Sockeye Salmon with ginger, soy sauce, and seared with hot oil.  NEW
7. Budda Feast with Deep Fried Tofu
8. Deep Fried Crispy Chicken
9. Long Life E-Fu Noodles with Mushroom Sauce  NEW
10. Dessert: Mango & Coconut Pudding

10-course traditional Chinese Dinner featuring:

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1)  
Cold platter (Fusion of Chinese and Scottish Appetizers – Won Ton;
Haggis Siu Mai; and Jelly fish – Vegetarian spring rolls or BBQ pork).

Haggis stuffed shu-mei pork dumplings – Dim
Sum means “pieces of the heart” or “pieces that touch the heart.” 
Absolutely delicious morsels of delicacy and succulence… and we stuff
them with haggis!  It's either very good or very “offal.”  But people
are always so hungry they eat it up without realizing they are having
haggis.
Neeps and tatties
are a tradition serving at Burns dinners, so we like to have pan-fried
turnip cakes – a staple at dim sum lunches… just like my great-grandma
used to make.
Honey BBQ Pork – what more can you say? 
Jelly fish –  a strange Chinese delicacy… rubbery… weird… textury… the perfect
compliment to haggis.  Photographers can try stuffing their haggis with
jelly fish, for a memorable portrait.

This year, the appetizer
platter will be served promptly at 6pm.  So we encourage every body to
arrive between 5 and 5:45pm, so they can order their drinks from the
bar, and browse the raffle prizes, and sign up for their free subscription to Ricepaper Magazine.
 

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2) Deep-fried Haggis & Shrimp Won Ton – New Look!
We are combining haggis and shrimp in this dish.  When I created the
first deep-fried haggis won-ton in 2003, it was a gift to welcome CBC
radio host Shelagh Rogers and her Sounds Like Canada crew to Vancouver.
My gift was the creation of deep-fried haggis won ton which symbolized the new generations growing up with mixed cultures.  Last weekend in Nanaimo, we again combined with Sh
elagh Rogers and created the inaugural Gung Haggis Fat Choy Pow Wow Dinner for a private party that also celebrated her birthday, as we combined Scottish, Chinese and First Nations history and culture. This NEW LOOK haggis won ton is modeled after that dinner.

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3)   Vegetarian Hot & Sour soup or maybe Winter Melon soup.
At the very first legendary
private Gung Haggis Fat Choy dinner for 16 friends, I cooked up a
Winter Melon soup with lemon grass.  It was wonderful! 
It's a good
hearty soup full of vegetables that I think Rabbie would enjoy.  Very
appropriate for Chinese New Year.
  Shark
Fin soup is a traditional soup for wedding banquets, and was one of my favorite soups as a
youth, but due to its environmental impact of
Shark fishing – it is not an option now. I now support the movement to ban
Shark Fin soup!  

4)   Haggis ( piped in with Scottish bagpipes) Chinese Lettuce wrap with diced vegetables
We
are moving up the Haggis offering this year.  In past years, it was
menu item #6 or #7.  The piping in of the haggis is always an important
ceremony at any Burns Dinner.  But too much bagpiping can turn a lot
of heads in a Chinese restaurant.  It is also very important to read
the Burns poem “Address to a Haggis”
prior to the serving of haggis.  So please…. do NOT cut into your
haggis, until after we have finished reading the poem.  Oh – by the
way… We don't usually do the usual traditional reading of the
poem.

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5) Chinese Lettuce wrap with diced vegetables
How
man
y ways can you serve haggis?  Take a spoonful of haggis, spread some
Chinese plum sauce on it, add some crunchy noodles and diced vegetables
with water chestnuts, and wrap it up in a delicate piece of lettuce.
Magnificient!  Imagine if Marco Polo should have brought back lettuce
wrap to Italy instead of noodles?  Or if you are vegetarian – leave out
the haggis.

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6)  Steamed Wild Sockeye Salmon.  This is what I cooked at the very first
Gung Haggis dinner back in 1998, but have never served at the dinners following for some reason  Past seafood dishes have been ginger crab, crab & lobster, pan fried spicy prawns, .  After paddling down the Fraser River
for the “Paddle for Wild Salmon


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7)   Buddha feast with deep-fried tofu
This
is
an important traditional New Year dish – with lots of
vegetables that are good for you such as lotus root, bamboo shoots, water chestnuts and mushrooms.  All the good things that every vegetarian
loves.  The
Chinese calendar is based on the 12 animals that came when
Buddha called.  The first animal to see Buddha was the Rat, I was born
in the
Year of the Rat.
  Next came the Ox, Tiger, then the Rabbit.

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8)   Crispy skinned chicken with shrimp chips
Another dish that was a childhood favorite.  Healthier than KFC.  And the shrimp chips were always my favorites as a child. 

9)   E-Fu noodles with Mushroom sauce
 
Long
noodles signify long life – a very important part of traditional Chinese
New Year greetings.  I really like the E-Fu noodles.  They are lighter
than regular Chow Mein noodles – very heavenly.  Another traditional
belief is that the Kitchen God goes to heaven, to report on the family. 
Maybe this is why the e-fu noodles are so special! 
This
is the dish you eat to fill yourself up, if you are still hungry.  We
had E-Fu long life noodles in 2008, but a lot of the Scottish people
thought that these traditional delicate noodles were too plain.  There
wasn't a strong sauce on them, and they weren't like chow mein
noodles… because they were E-Fu noodles!  Maybe it's an acquired
taste (like haggis).

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10)  Mango & Coconut pudding
Last year we alternated mango and coconut pudding at alternated tables. 
It's always a tradition to have
something sweet after the meal. 
The contrasting tastes of each, heightens the taste of the other.  So now to get both the sweet and subtle flavors, in typical Gung Haggis tradition, we have combined both flavors in one pudding… kind of like a mango-coconut swirl.  We thought about having Scottish blood
pudding… but the moment passed….

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