Thursday, February 02, 2006

Chinese Dumplings

January 29th was Chinese New Year -- welcome to the Year of the Dog! In celebration of the occasion, I purchased a copy of Bryanna Clark Grogan's Authentic Chinese Cuisine. I picked two recipes she said were good cold or at room temperature: tofu Char Sui with rice, and Chili Green Beans (chili flakes left out for shmoo). On the side are steamed dumplings filled with sweet red bean paste, purchased frozen at the Asian market and resteamed at home, and Chinese Gooseberries, aka kiwi fruit!
Verdict: Shmoo ate absolutely everything and I only got through half of mine, which made me realize that he's an even better eater than I am! Or at least a faster one... The dumpling was the first big hit with its sweet filling, then the green beans made his eyes light up. "Are these beans teriyaki? No wonder they taste so good!" The deep-fried tofu Char Sui was my favorite. 5 stars.
P.S. Since it is the Year of the Dog, perhaps we can all do something to help dogs this year! Maybe this will be the year to open our homes to a shelter dog (ahem, hint to my husband...), or send our support to organizations that encourage us not to eat them, wear them, or experiment on them. Woof!

27 comments:

sarchan said...

This has to be my favorite lunch yet!

Sweet Pea said...

I keep meaning to ask. Does Schmoo only get one opportunity to eat during the school day (at lunch)? What about recess for 15 minutes in the morning and afternoon when he can have snacks? It's not right that they want children to rush with their meals. Perhaps if children were encouraged to eat slowly and enjoy their meals then obesity rates would diminish somewhat...

Shelly said...

I think the helping dogs idea is great. I can't adopt another one (we already have five 'rescued' animals...although frankly, I think they rescued me), but I can organize another food drive for our no-kill shelter. I did one last year and we didn't do as well as I would have liked. I'll give it another shot!

And Sweet Pea...we unfortunately live in an 'eat in your car fast' culture. No one thinks anything of making kids scarf down their food. My son's school gives them about the same amount of time Shmoo's does. It's sad...he doesn't really get to enjoy what he's eating. Because the day is not a good time for leisurely meals, we make a point to have family dinners at least five nights out of seven now. We sit down and eat slowly, and talk, and generally at some point someone starts making body function jokes. :D But it has helped our family get closer.

Anonymous said...

Those dumplings look delicious. Aside from the red bean paste dumpings, some Chinese stores also have also sell vegetarian dumplings with tofu and veggies.

And speaking of Year of the Dog. There's this great book my boss gave me called "Second Chances"...short stories about dogs rescued from sad situations, but end up in loving homes.

Leslie said...

What a great lunch and I love the theme! I am also happy that you posted the (horrible) links to show people how bad things really are for those who do not know. I really hope you are able to adopt a pup, as I wish everyone could! Thanks for posting such great food again today and especially with the informative links. Keep it up, you are for sure helping a lot of people open their minds and get rid of animals/animal products from their diet (I see from their comments, posts). I like your little dog card there too for added decor!

Amanda said...

Hi there, I'm a new reader of your blog, and I wanted to say how much I love seeing the meals you prepare!! Just today I found a neat lunch container at my grocery store, similar to the ones you use, and I'm hoping to get us all eating better soon. Thanks for the link to the Chinese cookbook, it looks really good!

Pop Rocks n Drano said...

Hey I just came across a link to this blog and i think it's great. if only my parents made me vegan lunches when i was younger, maybe i wouldn't be so dang picky now. anyway, would you mind if i put a link on my website, cause this is really great.

Anonymous said...

Hi there,

Been watching for lunches every day for a while now but this is my first comment. :) The food looks Shmoolicious as always!

Just wanted to add that besides adopting a shelter dog, a lot of dogs need temporary foster homes to heal, age a bit before a permanent home, or become better socialized. It is a great way to get to know different kinds of dogs before deciding on one for good.

I volunteer at my local Humane Society so it is always great to see someone mention the sweet animals that would love a great home!

-amanda h

Anonymous said...

Hi jennifer! I've been a reader for a few months now and I just wanted to let you know how much I love reading your blog. Your creative meal ideas have rekindled my love of cooking. I wanted to share this video that my husband sent me. It's Carl Lewis talking about veganism. I'm not sure if he is still vegan, but it's great to hear him advocating the vegan diet!


Carl Lewis on Veganism


-Amy

MommaSchell said...

Wow! That looks SO good! We have an all vegan Chinese/Asian/fusion restaurant here in town that we go to about every other week that is the best veg restaurant in town. Yum! I purchased a couple traditional Chinese clay pots at the store and used to make a couple different "hot pot" dishes this last weekend. If you can get a couple, do. They go from oven or stove top to the table.

Dee said...

Our favorite meals to go in our American bento boxes are Asian! Even though we're not vegan (but because of this blog my hubby has "okayed" vegetarian 1-2 times a week!) I think because Chinese/ Japanese cooking stesses the balanced presentation of the food I've been able to get away with alot less "meaty" meals. Thanks for the cookbook link!

Anhoni Patel said...

Jennifer, can you be my mom? I want these lunches too!

Angie from PETA said...

once again jennifer, you have offered us a wonderful lunch and some insight as well. for those of you who are not able to adopt a pooch, you can still help my logging on to www.helpinganimals.com. you can sponsor a doghouse for a needy chained dog, some who are left out in the cold, with no bedding and no shelter. you can also sponsor a bale of straw for insulation and warmth. along with all that you can also sponsor a spay or neuter!

Karen Anne said...

Re the previous thread, I'm not a slippery eggplant fan either, but perhaps Shmoo would like roasted eggplant.

helen said...

i am vegetarian, but the one thing i dislike about the whole "asians eating dogs" discourse is that a lot of westerners turn their noses up at that and find it cruel while they find nothing wrong with eating beef, pork, poultry. or those who don't eat any kind of meat but who still find it somehow worse to eat dogs.. meanwhile, in hindu india, they are repulsed by the west's consumption of their sacred cows. it's all about cultural differences..

lilmagikkisses said...

Thank you so much for you wonderful blog. I and working my way into a vegan diet and had no idea what to make me or my 6 year old son to eat. Your blog has been an inspiration. Though lil John is not so happy of all the veggies I serve him he is less resistant because I try to make them fun. Quick question my husband has no intrest in veganism how do you cope with a non vegan mate?

Leslie said...

I agree with HELEN. What's the difference between eating a dog in the East and eating a cow or pig in the West?!?

Karen Anne said...

Re leslie, there is no difference.

Harmonia said...

Yummy! Cruelty-free! Edcuational! Cultural! LOVE IT!

Starla said...

I voted for you! You are a shining star for Veganism. I've been happily vegan for 10 years this November. Thanks for all you are doing.

Angela said...

That's a fantastic lunch, although I wish poor Schmoo had more time for lunch! A good vegan meal demands to be savored.

Have you ever done fresh spring rolls? You're so talented with sushi that yours would probably look great. It's an easy way to use up edible-raw veggies, like carrots, beets, spinach, or radishes.. you can get the rice wrappers in the Asian foods section of grocery stores, soak them in warm water for a minute, and then stuff with your favorite shredded veggies and apples and some noodles.. great with peanut sauce...and they're meant to be eaten at room temperature.

carin said...

Hi Jennifer,

I love Bryanna Clark Grogan's books. I recently purchased the Authentic Chinese Cuisine. If you are able please obtain a copy of her Noona's Italian Kitchen, every recipe that I tried in it is so wonderful! Especially the Tiramisu, I try and make that weekly.

Thanks for a wonderful vegan lunch inspiration.

Carin

Jennifershmoo said...

Hi, Sweet Pea! Yes, on most days they get to pick one thing from their lunch for a snack before recess. Shmoo almost always picks his fruit for his snack.

Hi, Leslie! Nope, I don't see a difference. If this were the year of the pig, rooster, ox, etc. I would have suggested the same thing, with links just as sad. Well, unless it was the year of the dragon. :-)

Hi, Angela -- Yes, we love fresh spring rolls! In fact, I have a great recipe for spring rolls for my cookbook, one that my husband says is worth the price of the book! I haven't made them for shmoo's lunch -- he currently dislikes spring roll wrappers.

Rebecca said...

What a fabulous lunch!! This has to be my favorite so far.

Karla said...

ewwwwwwwwww gross!!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

ewwwww i only eat um, MEAT! and chocolate... mmm chocolate ew tofu

Anonymous said...

This looks AWESOME!!!! I'm so inspired.

Grail, WI US