~ Steamboat for Special Occasion ~
What do you cook on Winter Solstice Day or “Dong Tzi”, which usually falls on the 22nd or 23rd December every year, other than the traditional chewy “Tong Yuen” or glutinous rice balls in ginger broth? Is it a practice at home to cook up a storm to celebrate the arrival of winter?
My mother used to utter in Cantonese “Dong Dai Guo Nin”, which means Winter Solstice Day is more significant festivity than the Chinese New Year. Hence, we must prepare “Tong Yuen” to be served on this special day which symbolises unionity.
Now that I have my own family, although we are living more of a cosmopolitan lifestyle, I insist that we celebrate by cooking something special and having “Tong Yuen” as part of a continuing practising of the Chinese culture.
“Tong Yuen” is just a dessert, how about the main meal of the day? I like preparing steamboat for special occasion like this one. Family members get to sit down surrounding the table for a good hour or more, ladling food from the pot for each other, warning each other that the food is hot, reminding each other that this is cooked & that is under-cooked and it goes on and on. How sweet is that?!
I used the AMC 24cm 5.0 litre Pot unit and the Navigenio for steamboat. It is neither too shallow nor too high a pot for steamboat. With the Visiotherm on the lid, no over-spilling of soup or guessing on whether the food is cooked sufficiently for the little tummies at home. There will be no over or under-cooked food for all.
As the Navigenio is not a flame based stove but on electricity, we have had our steamboat from the dining area to the patio and the garden. Imagine having steamboat on a windy evening out there!
I never cook any special soup as a base for steamboat. I always start off with plain water. All ingredients added to the pot will determine the taste of the soup as the steamboat goes on. The more the ingredients added to the pot, the better the soup will taste. Occasionally, may be some miso paste is added.
This recipe is just a general guide. In order to get your desired steamboat soup, you may choose your desired ingredients and amount of each ingredient based on you and your family & friends’ personal preference.
Be it Winter Solstice Day or Dragon Boat Festival, Christmas, New Year or Chap Goh Meh, a steamboat meal can be a great way to celebrate.
Steamboat Recipe (Serves 2-3) :
Group A Ingredients for Dips :-
- 100 ml Cooking Oil
- 1 Bulb of Garlic
- 5 Shallots
- 4 tablespoons of Oyster Sauce
- Chilli (Brand of your choice/Homemade)
Group B Ingredients :-
- 2 litres of Water
- 100 grams Salmon Fish Slices
- 100 grams Chicken Slices
- 50 grams Chicken Balls (Minced, marinated with light soy sauce, pepper & sesame oil and scoop into round balls)
- 10 Prawns, Deveined
- 10 Scallops
- 10 Japanese Hotate
- 1 box of Soft Tofu
- 1 piece of Firm Tofu
- 1 tube of Egg Tofu
- 2 Eggs
- 50 grams of Enoki Mushrooms
- 50 grams of Oyster Mushrooms
- 50 grams of Shimeiji Mushrooms
- 80 grams of Pumpkin, Skin on & thinly sliced 1/2cm x 5cm
- 80 grams of Yam, Cubed 2cm x 2cm
- 80 grams of Lotus Root, Thinly sliced 1/2cm thick
- 100 grams of Chinese Cabbage
- 100 grams of Lettuce
- 80 grams of Soaked Vermicelli / Bee Hoon
AMC Healthy Cooking Method :
- Prepare garlic & shallots oil with oyster sauce in advanced.
- Deep-fried garlic.
- Pre-heat 16cm 1.3l Benjamin pot with Navigenio on heat level “level 4” up to 50°C or “Meat Window”. Activate Audiotherm on 50°C or “Meat Window” for readiness indication.
- When Audiotherm beeps, turn Navigenio to heat level “level 2”, pour 50ml of cooking oil into pot. Add garlic and continue to fry for 3 minutes.
- Remove pot from Navigenio and slightly stir fry garlic with a spoon.
- Deep-fried shallots.
- Repeat steps in deep-fried garlic for preparation of shallots oil. Instead of 3 minutes, continue to fry for 5 minutes or longer, as shallots tend to be more moist in the heated oil.
- Add 2 litres of plain water in a 24cm 5.0l pot unit. Switch on Navigenio to automatic “A”. Turn on Audiotherm, place on lid knob, indicating 80°C or “Carrot Window” and set 1 minute for readiness indication. When Audiotherm beeps, turn Navigenio to lower heat level, “3”.
- Remove lid and add the first round of ingredients of your choice. Cover lid and continue to cook until Visiotherm indicates 98°C. Scoop out the cooked first round ingredients and enjoy with the sauces prepared in step 1.
- Continue to cook the second, third and so forth rounds of ingredients of your choice between heat levels “3” or “4” as per step 3 above until your tummy is satisfied.
- When deep-frying sensitive ingredients like garlic and shallots, you need not use much direct heat source. Do not wait until ingredients turned to desired golden brown colour to lower or remove from heat source. Remove the pot from Navigenio heat as the garlic & shallots will continue to brown with the residual heat. Otherwise, food can be overly fried and turn charcoal.
- Steamboat with AMC Navigenio is unlike the typical steamboat pot on flame where you will have the lid uncovered as you would like to see the cooked food floating to determine if the food is cooked. I would recommend that you cover the lid as you are able to monitor the food cooking in the pot with the Visiotherm indication. So, be patient if you would like to eat your food perfectly cooked!