We recently had the great pleasure of spending a lovely afternoon with our new friend Amy Chan. Amy, a longtime friend of Aunt Susan, is a talented and accomplished teacher. After spending many years teaching in New York City public schools and raising her two daughters, Amy continues to devote her life to the educational system outside of the classroom. But on this day the kitchen was her classroom and The Galileo School had the good fortune to watch Amy in action. After a fruitful trip to the Chinese market, Amy arrived with lots of fresh ingredients for our Chinese New Year Feast. She was very patient while teaching the subtle art of dumpling making. We made pork dumplings for won-ton soup and pork dumplings that were steamed and fried in the pan for dipping. Amy also made a fabulous vegetarian filling for the veggie pan-fried dumplings that we made. They were delicious! Making the won-tons and purses was a lot of fun and kept many hands busy.
Amy made a soup for the won-tons and showed us how to prepare the fried dumplings. Our dumpling assembly line was chugging along and Amy moved on to preparing her wok. The cooking continued as the kitchen began to smell of exotic aromas and the sizzling of Amy’s wok cracked and popped. We watched as she made the classic Chinese accompaniment Fried Rice. We learned that soy sauce is not traditionally an ingredient in fried rice in China and therefore it is usually white in appearance. Amy put soy sauce in our rice because she knew how much we liked it. Our mouths really started to water as the fried rice started to come together. Amy prepared a whole fish and sauteed Chinese greens to complete this incredible meal. A whole fish is traditionally served at Chinese New Year celebrations as a symbol of good fortune and prosperity in the year to come. It is tradition not to eat the entire fish so that some luck will be left over for the rest of the year. Our incredible meal was rounded out with traditional Chinese sesame balls, tea stained eggs and pastries filled with red bean paste. It was an amazing afternoon and we learned so much. The best part is that The Galileo School has a new friend named Amy Chan! Thank you so much to Aunt Rosalie and Aunt Susan for setting up this cooking class and Thank you to Amy for spending her day off from work teaching us about Chinese cooking. Zai Jian!