Author Archives: tangfoodemporium

Winter Warming Tang Tastes

If you’re looking for a warming recipe that will transport you straight to the streets of Guangzhou, then pull out your clay pot and try this Chinese Chicken Stew with Black Fungus. Black fungus (also known as ‘cloud ear’) is a popular ingredient in Chinese/Cantonese cooking. The word fungus might seem a little off-putting for some, but it is essentially like a dried shitake mushroom. They don’t have a whole lot of flavour but can add a snappy textured crunch to an array of hot dishes and salads. It is the perfect accompaniment to this stewed chicken which is quick, easy, and perfect for winter date night with a difference.

chicken_black_fungus

Serves 2

Ingredients:

1 tablespoon oil
1-inch piece ginger, peeled and sliced into thin pieces
300g chicken thigh or chicken leg, cut into pieces
2-3 pieces black fungus (cloud ear), soaked in warm water until soft and cut into pieces
3 stalks spring onions, cut into 2-inch lengths

Sauce:

1 tablespoon oyster sauce
1 teaspoon soy sauce
5 tablespoons water
1/2 teaspoon Shaoxing wine
1/2 teaspoon sesame oil
1/4 teaspoon sugar
3 dashes white pepper
1 small teaspoon corn flour
Pinch of salt

 

Method:

Combine all the ingredients in the sauce together, stir to mix well. Set aside.

Heat up the clay pot (or wok/skillet) on high heat. Add the oil. When the oil is heated, add the ginger and stir fry until aromatic. Add the chicken and stir continuously until the meat turns opaque, then add the black fungus, stir to combine well. Add the sauce into the clay pot, stir to coat well. Turn down the heat to low, cover the pot and simmer on low heat, for about 8 minutes or so, until the chicken is tender. If the sauce dries up, add some water to dilute the sauce. Right before serving, stir in the scallions. Serve warm with steamed rice.

Feeling inspired? You can shop all of these ingredients, including black fungus, in-store at Tang’s. Come and visit us at 185 Russell St. Melbourne CBD today!

Advertisements

The Dragon Boat Festival!

Every year on the fifth day of the fifth month of the traditional Chinese calendar (Monday the 18th of June 2018) one of the most culturally significant holidays is celebrated across East Asia – Dragon Boat Festival!

Now this is something that might come as a bit of a shock to you… The festival is not in fact about dragon’s! The roots of the Dragon Boat Festival are traced back to the suicide of the scholar and poet Qu Yuan.

Qu was a minister serving the King of state of Chu. Slandered by corrupt officials who competed for royal favour, Qu eventually left the capital and lived a life of exile back in his hometown, where he wrote what’s considered some of the greatest poetry in the Chinese language.

After he got word that the Chu capital had fallen to the Qin army, he waded into a river and drowned himself in despair at his country’s downfall. Locals paddled down the river to try to save him, to no avail. Later, they threw rice dumplings into the river as an offering to his spirit, and so that the fish wouldn’t feed on his remains. They also continued racing along the water with beating drums to ward off evil spirits, giving rise to the holiday’s two best-known traditions. Dragon Boats and Zongzi (rice dumplings)!

Dragon Boat racing has become not just a tradition, but a competitive sport around the world. The idea originated from the legend of the people who rowed their boats to save Qu Yuan after he drowned himself. The boats are built to resemble the face of a Chinese dragon, with a team of rowers moving their oars in sync to a beating drum.

But our favourite part of this yearly tradition is most definitely Zongzi! Zongzi are a pyramid shaped sticky rice dumpling, wrapped in reed leaves, which have a variety of fillings which can differ from region to region. For example, in North China, people often use jujubes (Chinese dates) as the filling, while the south sweetened bean paste, fresh meat, or egg yolk. Nowadays, Zongzi are a common food, which can be easily found in supermarkets. However, some families still retain the tradition to make Zongzi on the festival day.

So, whether your family celebrates Dragon Boat Festival, or you would just like to experience a taste of rich Chinese culture and history dating back centuries, we have your rice dumplings needs sorted here at Tang!

You can shop our range of pre-packaged and fresh dumplings in-store from now until the Festival.

Exam Time at Tang!

#TreatYourself Uni exams are coming up, which means it’s time to stock up the pantry and study! Our latest blog runs through some of our favourite snacks to help beat the studying-blues, and keep you focused and fed.

As a Uni student, you no doubt have scraped together your 10 cent coins from the car to purchase a packet of 2-minute noodles on more than one occasion (as you obviously spent all your money on more important things, like beer). And while we never met a noodle we wouldn’t eat, at exam time you need as many veggies as you can to fuel your brain. This easy recipe from Deakin Uni is not only delicious, but also nutritious:

15-minute noodles with ginger and vegetables

Ingredients

1 packet of 2 minute noodles

1 carrot, cut into matchsticks

1 red chilli, deseeded and chopped

1 thumb-sized piece of fresh ginger, finely chopped

2 garlic cloves, finely chopped

1tbsp sunflower oil

100g sugar snap peas

handful of beansprouts

2tbsp soy sauce

1tsp white vinegar

Method

1) Cook the noodles according to pack instructions and drain.

2) Chop chilli, ginger, garlic and carrot and set aside.

3) Heat the oil in a wok or large frying pan, then stir-fry the ginger, garlic, carrot and sugar snap peas over a high heat for two to three minutes.

4) Add noodles to the pan with the bean sprouts, then stir-fry for two minutes.

5) Mix together the soy sauce and vinegar, stir into the pan, then cook for one or two minutes.

6) Sprinkle the red chilli over the top to serve.

7) Divide between individual plates or bowls and serve immediately.

Another exam time essential is canned coffee, and nobody does canned coffee better than Asia! It was in fact a Japanese innovation, with a Japanese company well known for pioneering canned coffee with milk in 1969. Regardless of its origins, it’s perfect for all those late-night study sessions when you need a convenient buzz as you cram for Bioethics. Try Suntory Boss Black Coffee Espresso Drip when you really need an extra kick.

And when you just need something to nibble on, make sure you’re reaching for something with nutrients that will help improve your memory and overall health. Our pick? Tao Kae Noi Seaweed snacks! Seaweed is also an excellent source of folic acid, which is a key nutrient for brain health. Folic acid has been shown to improve verbal and memory performance. It is also needed to make serotonin, which affects mood in a positive way. And with flavours like Hot & Spicy and Wasabi, they’ll keep you satisfied.

Exams might be hard, but eating good food isn’t! You can shop our range of snacks and speciality Asian ingredients in-store.

 

 

It’s a Ramen Miracle: Healthy Lunch Tang Tips!

3759320

Have your lunches been a bit drab lately? Are you in need of some new inspiring, delicious meals to get you through your work or uni days? You’ll love our Asian lunch ideas – they’re simple, nutritious and guaranteed to be a hit with your stomach!

Here are a few of our favourite recipes that will have you hanging out for lunch day after day! You’ll be a source of envy in the office, with the scents of your tantalizing Asian lunches filling the kitchen.

Chicken Ramen Miracle

 Ramen is a popular Japanese noodle soup. It is an art form, but that doesn’t mean it has to be difficult to make! Take the leap and add this delicious chicken ramen to your lunch rotation. Note: Unless you’re an early riser, you may want to make this dish the night before because it takes almost an hour to complete.

What you’ll need:

Broth:

  • 4 cups of water
  • 4-5 chicken wings
  • 2 cloves of crushed garlic
  • 3 slices of ginger root
  • 2 green onions
  • 2 Tbsp Soy Sauce
  • 1/2 Tbsp Sake
  • 1/2 Tbsp Mirin
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 Tbsp sesame oil

Noodles:

  • 150-200g dried Chukamen (Chinese style noodles)

Topping:

  • 1 cup bean sprouts, blanched
  • 1 green onion, finely chopped
  • Shredded chicken (from the broth)

 

Method:

  1. Make the broth first. To begin, put water and chicken wings in a large pot and bring to the boil. After boiling for a few minutes, remove any scum and fat that may have come to the surface of the soup. Add garlic, ginger, and green onions, and cook covered for 40 minutes. Then, add some water if you feel you are losing too much liquid. Strain the soup, but save the chicken wings and set aside. Season with soy sauce, sake, mirin, salt, and sesame oil. Keep warm on low heat, covered.
  2. Prepare the toppings. Blanch bean sprouts in boiling water for a couple of minutes, and strain. Chop green onion. Remove bones from the chicken wings and shred the meat into small pieces by hand.
  3. Once everything else is ready, cook dried chukamen noodles according to the package. Divide the noodles in half and put in large bowls. Pour the hot broth over, and top with bean sprouts, onion, and chicken. Now your delicious dish is ready to eat!

 

Dosirak

Thought Japan had all the lunchbox fun? Think again! The Dosirak is the traditional lunchbox style meal of South Korea, usually made at home from scratch and served in a metal tin. What sets Dosirak apart from other lunchbox style meals? It’s typically shaken before eaten, combining all the ingredients and flavours together. Yum!

What you’ll need:

  • Red chilli paste (Gochuchang)
  • Cooked Rice
  • Dried seaweed
  • 1 egg
  • As many vegetables as you like!

Method:

Pop all ingredients in an airtight lunchbox and shake, shake, shake!

 

 Egg Fried Rice

Pushed for time? Looking for a simple and nutritious meal on the go? Egg fried rice to the rescue! Take this classic side dish and turn it into a healthy, quick lunch option!

What you’ll need:

Method:

  1. Beat together the egg and sesame oil and set aside.

 

  1. Heat the vegetable oil in a wok or large frying pan. When it’s simmering and almost smoking, add the rice and stir-fry for 3-4 minutes until completely heated through.

 

  1. Add the peas, spring onions and beansprouts. Stir-fry, turning the rice constantly around the pan, for about 3 minutes. Season well with soy sauce and pepper, then push to one side of the pan. Pour the beaten egg mixture onto the other side and leave for about 10 seconds so it begins to set. Briskly swirl around the egg to break it up and then toss around with the rice. Stir-fry for a further minute and serve…or put in a container ready for lunch later!

 

To shop all the ingredients needed to make these delicious recipes and for more cooking inspiration, come and visit us at 185 Russell St, Melbourne. Be sure to follow us on Instagram and Facebook as well to stay up to date on our promotions and new stock arriving.

Chinese New Year: The Year of the Dog

 

0B7A1362.jpg

History

Chinese New Year is just around the corner! The most important holiday of the Chinese tradition, Chinese New Year or Lunar New Year is based around a traditional Chinese Lunar solar calendar whose date indicates both the moon phase and the time of the solar year.

It is unknown exactly when the celebration first originated, however it can be traced as far back as the Shang Dynasty (1766 BC – 1122 BC) where it was a heavily religious ceremonial practice given in honour of heaven, earth and family ancestors.

Zodiac

The Chinese Zodiac ‘Sheng Xiao’ attributes a significant importance to the New Year tradition as it is based on a twelve-year cycle with each year related to an animal sign. Calculated according to the Chinese zodiac, there are 12 animals used to track time, attributing the animal’s characteristics to those whose birth year fall under the particular animal’s zodiac. 2018 is the Year of the Dog, and it is traditionally believed that characteristics including loyalty, reliability and patience are attributed to those born during that year.

Celebration

Celebrations leading up to and during the festival are divided by three phases, ‘Little Year, Spring Festival and Lantern Festival.’ During this time, families will gather to celebrate union and togetherness, which is at the heart of the importance of the festival’s tradition. Hanging decorations, shopping and setting off fireworks are also amongst the popular celebratory practices. The giving of ‘Red Packets’ which are envelopes containing Chinese Yuan are traditionally given by elders to young people as It was believed that the money in the red packet will protect them from evil and encourage a healthy life.

Food

Preparing, cooking and sharing food is at the heart of the Chinese New Year tradition. The New Year’s Eve dinner is of particular importance, as it is an opportunity for families to gather in reunion. Fish and dumplings are always served, and then accompanied by many other dishes including rice balls, rice cake, noodles and oranges, that all hold symbolism of luck and fortune.

If you’re cooking for your family in celebration of the Lunar New Year, or wanting to expand your tastebuds and try some tasty traditional Asian dishes, be sure to visit us at Tang Food Emporium in the Melbourne CBD. We have thousands of fresh, packaged and preserved items to guarantee an amazing and delicious New Year’s celebration for all.

The Delicious Jellyfish Delicacy

6203d263f969b0654515d0996a85132c

Calling all adventurous eaters! How would you like to try something new? Something different? Well, we at Tang Food Emporium might have found your next biggest at-home culinary hit.

We’re sure you’ve tried the delicious flavours and textures of calamari, shellfish and crustaceans, but how about Jellyfish?  This sea creature happens to be an extremely sustainable and when prepared correctly (those of the kind that are not poisonous), is a delicious and eatable marine species!

Conveniently, while populations of other marine creatures we consume have decreased due to global overfishing and environmental threats, Jellyfish continue to thrive in even the toughest oceanic conditions.

Okay, we bet that by now you’re at least a little bit intrigued…

How does Jellyfish taste?

The texture of this well known sea creature has been likened to fresh squid, with a slightly more salty flavour and more of a ‘crunch’.

Often stocked in Chinese markets, Jellyfish can commonly be found dried, salted, semi-dried or sealed fresh. Served alone or mixed into traditional dishes, Jellies add an Asian flavour to even the most European dishes including roasted duck and chicken.

IMG_9130

If you’re a beginner, we recommend trying this ancient Chinese delicacy in a salad with additional proteins and lots of soy sauce or vinegar. Some of the most popular recipes include marinated sesame jellyfish with a variety of condiments including chilli, garlic, onion and infused oils.

If you’re a little hesitant or don’t know where to begin, we at Tang Food Emporium are here to make your first experience with Jellyfish easy, exciting and enjoyable! Pop in-store and chat to our friendly staff that can point you in the right direction.

Tang’s Tasty Summer Treats

Summer is finally upon us, and that means it’s the perfect time of year to celebrate the warm weather and festive season with our friends and family; but what would a gathering be without delicious food?!

DSC_0011.jpg

Forget your vanilla ice cream and sugary sodas; here at Tang we have to share with you two summer favourites guaranteed to delight the tastebuds! All the ingredients mentioned are available from our Melbourne CBD store located on Russell Street, just a minute away from China Town! Come in today and let our friendly staff help you find everything you need.

 

Fruity Bubble Tea

 

Staying hydrated is essential during the summer months, so why not cool down with a traditional South East Asian beverage when you’re by the pool or entertaining guests? We can guarantee they’ll be a hit!

 

At Tang we love Bubble Tea, an uber popular Taiwanese milk tea drink traditionally infused with syrup, fruits and tapioca pearls to create various delicious flavours.  Aside from being delicious and a much healthier alternative to sodas, it’s super easy to make! Here’s what you’ll need (makes ONE serving):

 

  • 2 cups of Fresh fruit of choice (we recommend Strawberry or Lychee )
  • 2 cups Soy or Almond Milk
  • 1 tsp Honey
  • Jelly or Tapioca ‘Boba’ pearls to taste
  • 2 cups of Ice

 

  1. Put ice, fruit and milk into a blender and blend until smooth
  2. In a tall glass or cup, add tapioca pearls or jelly to taste
  3. Add Honey
  4. Add blended mixture
  5. Stir/shake well and serve immediately.

 

32cf3a06c057c9dc8169479774db7941.jpg

Refreshing Watermelon Salad:

 

Salads are always a hit when it comes to feeding a crowd over the festive season. They’re fresh, healthy and super tasty; plus many can be prepared in a matter of minutes.

 

This traditional Thai Watermelon salad recipe is super simple and combines perfect balance of sweet and savoury.  Here’s what you’ll need:

 

  • ½ a seedless Watermelon cut into cubes or chunks
  • ½ Garlic clove
  • 2 de-seeded and sliced red chillies
  • ½ cup of Fish sauce
  • 1 lime
  • Peanuts (to taste)
  • Thai Basil leaves (shredded)
  • Mint leaves (shredded)

 

  1. Using a mortar and pestle, ground garlic, chilli’s, lime juice and fish sauce until combined
  2. Add mix to Watermelon chunks in a large bowl and toss together thoroughly
  3. Sprinkle herbs and peanuts
  4. Serve immediately

 

Now you have a few easy summer Asian-inspired recipes to enjoy over the festive season! For more cooking ideas and all your ingredients, be sure to visit us at Tang Food Emporium: 185 Russell St, Melbourne VIC 3000.