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Lunar New Year Recipes | Ping Coombes

Lou Sang Prosperity Toss Salad & Pan Fried Sea Bass with Sweet Sour Cucumbers and Peanut Brittle by Ping Coombes

 

Happy Lunar New Year! To celebrate the Year of the Ox, we have collaborated with Masterchef Champion Ping Coombes to share her take on two marvellous Lunar New Year celebratory dishes which you can recreate at home. Have a stab and feel free to add your own flavours and twists. Share your final dishes with us on Instagram using the hashtag #StrongAsAnOx.

Lou Sang is an auspicious dish from Malaysia which is eaten during the Lunar New Year. The idea is to toss the salad with family and friends as high as possible whilst saying auspicious phrases to welcome in the new year. The higher you toss the better luck you will have! 

Pan Fried Sea Bass with Sweet Sour Cucumbers and Peanut Brittle is a dish Ping’s mother taught her. Fish is auspicious during Chinese New Year. Fish in Chinese 鱼 (yú) sounds like 余 (yu) which means “surplus” or “extra.” The typical blessing is 年年有余 (Nián nián yǒuyú), wishing you to have a surplus (or fish) of food and money every year. Keep scrolling for Ping’s Pan Fried Sea Bass with Sweet Sour Cucumbers and Peanut Brittle recipe.

 

Lou Sang – Prosperity Toss Salad

Serves 4 – 6

Ingredients

5 radishes, thinly sliced

100g smoked salmon

1 medium cucumber, julienned

¼ small red cabbage, finely sliced

2 medium carrots, julienned

2 green apples, cut into fine matchsticks

2 mandarin/satsumas/clementines, peeled

Handful of coriander leaves

2 tbs pickled ginger

20g deep fried wanton skins (optional)

20g deep fried rice vermicelli (optional) 

 

Sauce

100ml plum sauce

1 tsp five spice powder

1 ½ tsp sesame oil

Squeeze of lime juice

Large sprinkle of sesame seeds + more for sprinkling later

 

Method:

  1. Places salmon in the middle of your plate.
  2. Arrange the vegetables, fruit and crispy wanton skins and vermicelli( if using) around the salmon. 
  3. Mix the ingredients for the sauce and place in a small bowl.
  4. Pour sauce over the salad and toss. 

 

Tips: 

  1. You can use shop bought prawn crackers if you don’t have wonton skins or vermicelli. Serve extra for your guests to crunch over the top
  2. Soak your green apples in some lemon juice or lime juice to keep them from turning brown. Drain them well just before serving
  3. You can place extra sesame seeds into an Angpow (red packet) for guests to sprinkle on later
  4. Toss high! 

 

Pan Fried Seabass, Sweet Sour Cucumbers, Peanut Brittle

Serves 2

Ingredients

2 fillets seabass or any firm fish of your choice

2 pinches of sea salt

3 tbs cornflour, seasoned with some salt and pepper

½ cucumber, julienne or cut into matchsticks

Peanut brittle, crushed (optional) 

 

Sweet and Sour Cucumbers

5 tbs sweet chilli sauce

3 tbs ketchup

1 tsp light soya sauce

2 tbs water

Squeeze of lime juice

1 tsp black sesame seeds

½ cucumber, cut into 1 cm circles

Method:

  1. Mix sweet chilli sauce, ketchup, soya sauce, water in a small saucepan. Warm through on the hob and season with lime juice. Sprinkle on the sesame seeds and remove from the hob. 
  2. Mix the cucumber circles with some of the warm sweet and sour sauce. Set aside.
  3. Dust the seabass skin side with some cornflour. Shake off the excess flour
  4. Heat up a frying pan with 3 tbs of vegetable oil on medium to high heat
  5. Place the fillets skin side down away from you. Gently apply some pressure on the fillets for about 20 – 30 seconds to prevent it curling up.
  6. Leave the fillets frying in the oil for 2 minutes till the skin is crispy. 
  7. Using a spatula, flip the seabass to its flesh side. Tilting the pan slightly, use a spoon to baste the seabass, crisping the skin further. Cook a further 1 minute. Cook for longer if your fish is thicker.
  8. Remove from the pan. 
  9. Place the sweet and sour cucumbers on a plate, topped with the fresh julienne cucumbers and pan fried sea bass. 
  10. Drizzle with reserved sauce and top with crushed peanut brittle

 

Tip: You can make peanut brittle using the recipe from my book Malaysia or you can use shop bought.

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