January 23, 2012

This is my first-ever Lunar New Year as a working mom. With a hectic 9-to-7 gig, I now totally relate to friends whose full-time jobs make it impossible for them to pull together a decent holiday dinner on a week night (or any dinner on any night, for that matter).

In a few minutes, I have to run off to check out a public meeting. Meanwhile, my teen daughter is studying for mid-terms at the library. Given our schedules, we had to cancel our plans for tonight (not that we really had anything planned anyway).

If you’re also missing out on a fancy, fun Chinese meal this evening, then this post is for you. The photos are from a dinner I attended a few months ago at the Harlem home of Kian Lam Kho and his partner, the incredibly gracious Warren Livesley. Kian slaved in their kitchen while Warren served up the 10-course meal that was made from scratch. Dazzling!

You’ve probably heard of Kian from the New York City food scene, where he’s a chef, teacher and blogger. Plus, he’s consulting on for a new dining venture in the stylish Lower Manhattan neighborhood of Tribeca.

Kian says Lotus Blue Restaurant Bar will open any day now to become the Big Apple’s “first, full service” eatery to serve dishes inspired by China’s Yunnan Province. For more on Kian’s new baby, please “like” the Lotus Facebook page and check out his blog. Since I enjoy writing about Kian, I have posts about him which you can read by clicking here.

Okay, I’ve gotta get a move on now. So mwah! Big kiss to you. Happy Year of the Dragon. May the months ahead bless you with joyful new beginnings, lots of love, good health and delicious food. xoxoxoxo.

P.S. — Here’s the menu that goes with the pictures below. Even though I eat very little meat these days, the meal was one of those when-in-Rome/Harlem/Yunnan moments where I got into a social eating head and went wide-eyed over the variety of both classic Chinese and Yunnan-inspired ingredients:

  • Four Cold Appetizers (Green Tomato with Sour Plum, Watermelon Radish and Asian Pear Salad, Shredded Chicken Salad with Mango, Jellyfish with Black Vinegar)
  • Stir-fried Shrimp with Chinese Olive Sauce
  • Beef Slices Poached in Seven-Spice Oil
  • Red-Cooked Pork Sliders with Buns
  • Pork Rib Soup with Haw Fruit and Asian Pear
  • Tea-Braised Squab with Pomegranate
  • Stir-Fried Baby Mustard Greens with Bamboo Pith
  • Grilled Red Snapper with Lemon Grass
  • Abalone and Yellow Chives Fried Rice
  • Tapioca in Coconut Milk with Taro and Sweet Potato (my favorite!)
No time for the slideshow below? Then view all photos in one click here.