Life is Good

Crazy Salad Welcomes Joy, Luck, Wealth in the Year of the Cock

Lucky salad and a fabulous menu at China Blue by Jereme Leung at the Conrad Manila.
Comments

It was at Nyonya, a Malaysian restaurant in New York’s Chinatown, about 10 years ago that I first tried Yee Sang, a raw fish salad served to celebrate the seventh day of the Chinese New Year. My friend Melissa had invited me to join her and other friends from Singapore toss the sweet, sour, salty, spicy, and crunchy ingredients with our chopsticks. It was a memorable experience—the colors, flavors, and textures all mingling together in a party all their own.

New Year Salad

This month, I was reintroduced to Yee Sang at China Blue by Jereme Leung at the Conrad Manila. Chopsticks in hand, we tossed raw salmon, fried shrimp, shredded cabbage, peppers and carrots, pickled radish and ginger, sesame seeds, crispy crackers, five-spice powder, olive oil (for a smooth year), plum sauce (for a sweet year), and other nice things, while shouting, “Lo hei! Lo hei!” The higher we tossed, the chef said, the higher our fortunes in the New Year, so of course we went higher and higher. We ended up with quite a mess, but as the chef said, the salad falling outside the bowl meant our wealth would be overflowing.

We had so much fun that afternoon that I brought my Mom, siblings, uncles, aunts, and cousins last weekend to have it again as part of a Chinese New Year celebration.

Money bags; braised abalone, black mushroom, and sea moss roll

Aside from Yee Sang, China Blue’s special Lunar New Year menu includes plump tofu “moneybags” bursting with seafood and mushroom for good luck and prosperity. A dish of braised abalone, black mushrooms, and rolls of sea moss symbolizes success in business. Stir-fried lobster, which the Chinese consider the king of the sea, brings wealth and happiness. Other standout dishes include smoked duck enrobed in pear-shaped dumplings, and a lovely crab soup with braised peach gum and seafood served in individual bowls over votive candles so it bubbles happily as you sip, or in the traditional way, slurp it as loudly as you can.

ADVERTISEMENT - CONTINUE READING BELOW

Pear dumpling with smoked duck; braised peach gum and seafood with crab roe broth

Wishing you all a happy, prosperous Year of the Rooster.

Life is good.

China Blue’s special menu is available through February 2. 683.3915; [email protected]

Comments
About The Author
Yvette Fernandez
Editor In Chief
View Other Articles From Yvette
Comments
Latest Stories
 
Share
Plus how much a stay in the Jodhpur-based palace hotel will cost the celebrity couple.
 
Share
Matteo Guidicelli and his family-run Da Gianni in Alabang is the perfect place for dinner with family and friends.
 
Share
The actress opens up about the joys of having a steady job, her love of all things French, and why the midterms gave her hope.
 
Share
A royal expert explains the real reason they got behind the wheel before Prince Charles's birthday.
 
Share
Colvin's fellow war correspondent Janine di Giovanni talks to Pike about A Private War.
 
Share
Why all-organic and all-natural is the way to go.
 
Share
 
Share
Of course a Spanish village would make a great gift, Gwyneth Paltrow.
Load More Articles
CONNECT WITH US