Do you know the Vietnamese expression for celebrating Lunar New Year is “ăn Tết” – literally translated as “eating Tết”? Indeed, food has always played a big part in Lunar New Year, when family members bond over tender braised pork on a bed of soft fragrant rice. Peanut brittles, watermelon seeds and other tidbits in the colorful snack box become a social catalyst that brings laughter and joyous conversations.
This year, even if you can’t travel to be with your family, you can still bring these experiences home with Chau’s Lunar New Year Feasts. The three menus (each consists of 4 main items and an assortment of snacks or drinks) have a distinct flair that reflects chef and owner Jane Tran’s heritage as a Chinese-Vietnamese Canadian, as well as her training in French culinary techniques.
“I feel like Chinese Lunar New Year food and traditions are really well known here in Toronto, but I want to showcase Vietnamese Tết food as well. It is lesser known but equally delicious,” she notes.
The Chinese menu features dishes like mapo tofu dumplings and spring rolls, as well as Peking duck confit for a prosperous and auspicious new year. The Vietnamese package includes bánh tét and thịt kho pork rib, Tran’s take on the comforting pork braised in coconut water.
Even though traditional Chinese and Vietnamese cuisines are pretty meat-heavy, Tran also adds a vegan option, so many of her friends and other vegans who want to experience the holiday won’t be left out. In the vegan menu, you can find a mix of both cuisines, with dumplings, bánh tét, lo mein and a summer roll kit.
Chau’s Lunar New Year Feasts are available for pre-order now at $88 each (for 2-3 servings) on their website until Monday Feb 8th.
Photo courtesy of Chau
This post is also available in: Tiếng Việt