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31st Jan 2014

Classic Chinese Recipe Ideas for the Year of the Horse

Gong Xi Fa Cai! Chinese recipes for your ultimate feast.

Una Kavanagh

Gong Xi Fa Cai – A very Happy Chinese New Year to you all!

When if comes to Chinese food we’re in awe of the many amazing flavours, smells and textures that come with the cuisine. So in honour of the Year of the Horse, we’ve put together some of our favourite recipes from China.

Here’s our Chinese New Year menu, for you to try out this year, that’s guaranteed to kick start your ultimate feast. But be warned; you’ll definitely be wanting second helpings!

Spring Rolls

Authentic Chinese spring rolls, also known as egg rolls, should be light, crispy and easily eaten in a few bites. The filling for the delicious roll should also be light but full of delicious and crispy vegetables. The key really is to be able to pick out every flavour within the roll.


  • 2 cups bean sprouts
  • 50g bamboo shoots (canned)
  • 6 dried wood ear mushrooms
  • 1 medium carrot
  • 50g bamboo shoots (canned)
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons oyster sauce
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 2 tsps light soy sauce
  • 1 tsp white sugar
  • 18 – 20 spring roll wrapping paper (you can find these in many Asian supermarkets, make sure that it’s the square and not the circular paper)
  • 1 egg, beaten lightly
  • 2 tblsps rapeseed oil for stir-frying
  • 4 to 5 cups oil for deep-frying
  • Salt for seasoning

Method for the filling:

  1. Ahead of time, soak the mushrooms in warm water to soften them. This can take about 30 minutes.
  2. When they’re ready, squeeze out any excess water and slice them thinly.
  3. Peel the carrot and grate it. Remove your bamboo shoots from the can and finely slice.
  4. Take a bowl and combine your oyster sauce, water, soy sauce and white sugar.
  5. Take a frying pan and heat your rapeseed oil, making sure that it coats the pan and when it comes to a sizzle, stir-fry your vegetables for a few minutes.
  6. Add in your sauce mixture and season to taste. Keep swirling for a few more minutes and then remove from the heat.

Making the spring rolls:

  1. Lay a wrapper in front of you so it looks like a diamond.
  2. With the egg, brush the edges of the wrapper.
  3. Bring forward your spring roll filling and place about 2 tblps of it in the bottom half to form a slight rectangle shape but make sure that it doesn’t touch the edges.
  4. Using the bottom corner of the wrapper, lift it up and and tuck it in under the filling.
  5. Fold over the left and right sides of the wrapper first before rolling up the wrapper away from you – you should see it now forming the classic cylindrical shape.
  6. Before you completely seal the foll, brush the edges of the top corner of the diamond with the beaten egg mixture, fold over and then seal.

To cook:

  1. Heat the remaining oil for deep-frying to 180 degrees celsius.
  2. Carefully lower in your spring rolls and cook until they are golden brown and crispy. This should take less than four minutes.
  3. Remove the rolls and place them on paper towels to soak up the excess oil.


Kung Pao Chicken

Kung Pao chicken is a delicious and spicy meal, that’s combined with peanuts, sauces and crispy vegetables. It’s really easy to make, and what’s great is that you don’t have to be too strict with the measurements when you’re mixing everything together. Below, watch chef Tom Lin demonstrate his recipe for Kung Pao!


  • 1 lbs of chicken
  • 1/2 of an onion
  • 1 red pepper, 2 green onions
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • 1/2 tsp of ginger
  • 1/2 cup of peanuts
  • 6 pieces of dried hot peppers
  • 2 tsp of cooking wine
  • 2-3 tsp of soy sauce
  • 2 tsp of oyster sauce
  • 1 tsp of brown sugar
  • 80mls of chicken stock
  • 1/4 tsp of sesame oil
  • 2 tsp of corn starch mixed with 60mls of cold water.

Nian Gao (Chinese Sticky Fruit Cake)

This sweet and delicious, traditional New Year cake is flavored with almond extract and brown sugar – it’s one of the most popular desserts that’s eaten at this time of year and is a perfect ending to our Chinese New Year menu!


Food & Drink