Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Chinese New Year

Pic: Now when I asked her for a smile, she will smile. Usually her smile is even cuter than the one on this photo.

Pic: KK and his cousin on Chinese New Year day

This year we just started a new tradition at our house. From now on, we celebrate Chinese New Year together with our family and our employees too. Yes, my great grandpa is from China but for some reason when he immigrated to Indonesia, he chose to educate his 9 children with Dutch education system. For some other reason, it's too long to explain, both side of my parents' follows Dutch system more than Chinese system. Even more, since my mother side switch their religion from Taoist to Christian, they all stop celebrating Chinese new year. So since I was born, I never knew how it feels to celebrate Chinese New year. Well....until I marry a Taiwanese that is.

For the last couple of years, we celebrate Chinese new year primarily in Taipei with my in laws. But this year, because now KK is already in first grade, we can't just take him from his school so we can celebrate Chinese New Year in Taipei.

There is another reason too why we celebrate with our employees. My husband, R, wants to teach them the history of Chinese New Year and what is the custom in China and Taiwan on how to celebrate it.

So 2 days before Chinese New Year, R told our employees about the history and the custom of Chinese New Year. Then after that we prayed together ( the Christian way since everybody here is Christian ) and we eat together.

To make sure that the food is authentic, R ordered everything from the Khou Fu, a Taiwanese Restaurant. The owner, a Taiwanese, who cooked everything by himself and have everything delivered to our door. He even imported a lot of the ingredients direct from Taiwan.

The next day which is the day when most of Chinese people have dinner with their family from their father side. We had a dinner party again and we invited my father's family and my mom's younger sister who live just next door to where we live.

Again all of the food is from Khou Fu Restaurant but beside that, we also cooked Ma La Tofu , it was suppose to be Ma La Stinky Tofu but since we can't buy stinky tofu in Surabaya, we found one brand of tofu that even though they are not stinky, but we think their texture is pretty similar. It's chewier than any other type of tofu's brands.

To make the Ma La Tofu, I used up 3 jars of Chili Bean Paste! So it's super hot. Just the way we like it!!!

To show you all the food that we ate during Chinese New Year, here are the photos. I did not include the parcels that people sent to my family on this entry.

Pic: Fried Rice

Pic: Hot and sour soup

Pic: Ma La Tofu ( look at how red it is, that's because they are loaded with chilies! )

Pic: Seafood and Vegetable Stir-Fry

Pic: Sweet and Sour Fish

Pic: Deep-Fried Chicken Thighs

Pic: Shrimp and Vegetables Stir-Fry

Pic: Pork With Preserved Mustard Greens ( You eat this with the bun on the next picture below this photo)

Pic: Buns
Pic: Steamed Chicken With Scallions

Pic: Appetizer
Pic: Fried Fish

Pic: Steamed Prawns with garlic sauce

Pic: Meat and vegetables ( I don't exactly know what it is since by the time I want to eat it, it's all gone! )

Pic: Stewed Pork Hock

Pic: Richard serving every body with Ma La Tofu

NOTE: If you like to try some of the recipe for the food that I ate on Chinese New Year. you can click on the food's name that I already highlighted.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Wine Appreciation Class

Having a foreign husband in my own native land really makes me have to keep thinking on how to entertain him. So when my cooking teacher told me that Ranch 99 is going to have a free wine appreciation class in English, I practically ran fast to sign up for both, me and my husband.

At first I thought that the French teacher who will teach us is a Surabaya local resident. But it turn out he is a wine company representative that came all the way from Bordeaux, French. He is very very young, maybe less than 25 yrs old and he is so nervous that I automatically feel pity that he has to stand in front of us and try to explain to us the basic explanation about how wine is made in heavily accent English.

We met an Australian lady whose son also goes to the same school as KK there and from her I found that I can join the Expatriate Women's Association of Surabaya ( EWAS ) because I married to a foreigner. Not bad huh? She said just the day before, EWAS had a dim-sum cooking class in Ranch 99, for their members only. That sounds like fun doesn't it? Maybe I will join this association.

Back to the wine class. The teacher let us taste 5 different wines. From red to white to champange and sparkling wine. For some reason I always get a little of wine only when they distribute the wine glass to everybody. R get twice than me. Weird....

Well, it was fun to take a class together, husband and wife. From the Australian lady who also join the Wine Club, she directed me to buy our liquers and wines from VIDA supermarket in Mayjen. Sungkono. We found that they do have a nice collection there and the price is cheaper too. I bought a lot liquers and wine there a couple days ago and for a bottle of Myers' Jamaican Rum, it cost me about Rp. 99,000 or US$ 10. Not bad I think ....

Taiwanese In Surabaya - Indonesia

In the past 6 months since R becomes Surabaya resident. Both of us has tried to get as many information about Taiwanese community in here. We are in luck because my good friend Arief who basically grew up with me also marry a Taiwanese girl and we both have 2 kids too, one boy and one girl. All 4 or us are about the same age too.

Since Arief and his wife move first to Surabaya, they already have many Taiwanese friends and information that they generously share with us.

But actually, they longer we stayed here, we found out that we keep meeting Taiwanese family when we go to supermarket, mall, hotels, and restaurants. Since R also subscribe Chinese newspaper, he also get a lot of information from it.

Last week, we went to see Taiwanese Buddhist Association that was holding a social event at a mall. Beside asking for donation, they also have a food court that sell home-made Taiwanese food and Indonesian food. We met a lot of Taiwanese people there and that's good for my husband who must have miss speaking his own language!

Few months ago we also went to a Taiwanese Christian Crusade at the same place. We were invited by Arief and his lovely wife, Sharon.

So when we happen to go to Papaya Supermarket at Raya Darmo Permai area, we stop to have lunch at Khou Fu Taiwanese Restaurant. This is not the first time we eat in this place. We both like this place. The food is good and the price is also good. The owner is Taiwanese but he marry an Indonesian. He is already becoming an Indonesian citizen too now.

This restaurant sells typical local Taiwanese food that my husband loves.

Pic: Five Spiced Deep-Fried Pork Chops

Pic: Hot and Sour Soup

Pic: Spring Onion Pancake

If you are curious about Taiwanese cuisine, you can try to eat at Khou Fu. They can do delivery too.

For the address, you can see it here ...

Jl. Raya Darmo Permai ii No. 56 / Kav 1
Surabaya, 60226, Jawa Timur

Telp: (031) 734-2320

If you want to try to make the Taiwanese Deep-Fried 5 Spiced Pork Chops, you can see the recipe that I posted at my blog.