The day before you came…

This was on the the eve – the day before Chinese New Year’s Day came.

My missus was busy the whole day cooking in the kitchen while my girl and I did a bit of last-minute cleaning and put the finishing touches to the decoration inside the house…

CNY 2015 1

We didn’t go out to buy new stuff for the purpose – most were things that we had last year or even before that.

My missus did go and buy fresh pussy willows though…

CNY 2015 2

She said that one would need to get new ones for the auspicious occasion and true enough, she did come into a bit of money soon after she went and bought some – not much, just a bit and enough to pay for her purchases. Hehehehehe!!!!

There were, of course, the Mandarin oranges…

CNY 2015 3

…and we were done – all nicely spruced up…

CNY 2015 4

…and ready to welcome and usher in the Year of the Goat…

CNY 2015 5

That night, we had a simple reunion dinner…and in keeping with the tradition, we had fish…


– as they say, Nian Nian You Yu (年年有魚) or abundance year after year…and these golden meat rolls – the ngor hiang or lor bak

Ngor hiang

…as they are called in some places.

This was a once-a-year treat for us – the five-spice phak lor (stewed) duck…

Phak lor ark

My girl and I enjoyed it to the max and we would only get to eat this once a year as my missus does not eat duck. Ironically, nobody (outside) does it better – in fact, none would come anywhere near and the next best thing would be the regular roast duck, that’s all.

We also had these mushroom rolls…

Mushrrom rolls

…which tasted very nice but did not look as great – this would need a little bit more practice, I guess…and we did not think the beer-marinated chicken boxing…

Chicken boxing

…was all that nice – we prefer the way my missus would usually marinate chicken wings to bake on normal days, whatever ingredients she would use for those.

The scallop and crab meat and minced meat soup…


…that my missus cooked was simply out of this world, very very nice. We did not finish most of everything but this one, we literally licked the bowl clean! LOL!!!

It had been a long and tiring day. Believe you me, I went to bed early and slept through the 3rd World War and a 4th one thrown in for good measure – all the deafening fireworks and firecrackers all through the night, especially around midnight…

…but for many, this alone would make it worthwhile for everyone to make the trip home to Sibu for this very auspicious occasion and yes, it would be a good time to come and visit as well – just book your air tickets early as it can be difficult to get seats or it may be mighty expensive as the festival draws near.

Author: suituapui

Ancient relic but very young at heart. Enjoys food and cooking...and travelling and being with friends.

20 thoughts on “The day before you came…”

  1. Wow, your house so large and full with CNY feel~
    and you reunion dishes are so yummy~~ 🙂
    Happy CNY to you and families~

    Thanks, Nick & the same to you and yours. Yes, we had a delightful dinner…and no, mine is just a small and simple house and the decor, just a bit and all simple one – no need to spend too much on it.

  2. Your house is decorated very nicely. *thumbs up*

    Good food. I like the duck dish. Your wife is really a very good cook!

    You should see some of the houses here – all decorated with lanterns (with lights some more) from top to bottom…including those spinning ones like a disco ball!!! Yes, my girl and I enjoyed the duck so very much!

  3. What a lavish reunion dinner. Love all the dishes your missus whip out. One woman show, salute to her. So…so…so…so blessed you are, Arthur.

    Indeed. always so blessed, praise the Lord!

  4. i love your decoration … uncluttered and unfussy, warm and welcoming. very pleasing … great job! i guess after all these years of experience, you and your family know exactly what to do. i must admit, i don’t decorate my place at all, not for christmas or for cny 😉 and for the food, the duck and the scallop soup and the fish look very tasty! 🙂

    Yes, must not go overboard – will make the house look more like a temple in the end. 😀 Yes, we had a great dinner, simple but lots of good stuff – just right for the 3 of us.

  5. What a nice house, nice living room! So big leh your house.. And that ceiling, wah, nice.. Just see that curtain in the living room, at first I thought it’s a hotel or something..

    The ceiling? Very old school leh!!! 80’s style that one. Nowadays everybody has plaster ceiling, no more like this. Aiyor…simple house, comfortable enough ok already – where got so luxurious like hotel.

  6. Your house is so tastefully decorated. Very nice! I counted 6 dishes and all look very good. Your missus sure took the trouble to cook so many dishes for the 3 of you.

    Thanks. The lor bak, mushroom roll for our dinner the following night with my in-laws – tried a bit first. Only managed one side of the fish, had to eat it another day but tradition has it that you must not finish the fish, have to leave some of it behind so that was just right then.

  7. A beautiful home, and lots of food just for three!

    Thanks. Some, we cooked for dinner the following night with my in-laws and we took a bit to eat first ourselves. Stay tuned for that post! 😉

  8. Very beautiful, I love all your photos here. And the basket with the smiling cats is fantastic…it made me smile. 🙂

    Thanks. Those are Japanese good fortune cats, if I’m not wrong.

  9. I love Phak Lo Duck and your house is tastefully decorated. Mine is clutter-ridden.

    That would give you a fair idea of what my desk was like when I was in school. 😉 My girl and I love phak lor duck too. Love the eggs as well but too many things to eat already so we did not have any. 😦

  10. I loves everything that you had, hehe…

    All nice, except the chicken – ok only, this new recipe.

  11. Happy chinese new year uncle Arthur and family,,,the phak lor duck truly looks scrumptious…making me

    Thanks, and the same to you and yours. I wonder which erni.chan this is. Auntie does it best, exactly like how my mum (and my aunties in the family) used to do it before.

    1. This erni chan is an avid reader of your blog who hopes to makes the drive down to sibu from Kuching to visit you one day when he is back on holidays from KL and enjoy finally visit the payung cafe that I’ve been reading so much about on this blog, happy holiday

      Sure am looking forward to that. Thanks for following my blog and for commenting. Or you can always hop over on one long weekend – I think we have quite a few of those this year. As they keep saying, everyone can fly. Always welcome, just let me know and I will make sure it will be a trip worth the while. Cheers!

      1. Thanks uncle Arthur, will let u know well in advance and look forward to meeting u in person in the near future..

        Right here waiting… 😉

  12. Was that ikan terubok? empurau?

    Definitely not terubok! Gee! You sure don’t know your fish. 😀 Not empurau either – post on it coming soon!

  13. The irony.. she who doesn’t eat duck dishes out the best duck dish in the world! 😀

    Believe me, I went to bed at 11.30PM and slept through all the fireworks too! I had a long day..

    Indeed, so ironical. Her mum cooked duck like this too. She wouldn’t be cooking it, I’m sure, if our girl and I do not like it so much.

    Good grief!!! When I was your edge, I would be partying away till the break of dawn, having the tine of my life! It was so good to be young – the best years of my life!

  14. Your wife really cheers up the CNY atmosphere.. Nice.. nice… As for me, I didn’t put up anything in my own house… one day I must do something like yours.. hahahaa…

    She only put up the pussy willows (real live ones) with the sakuras (not real). I did all the other decor…while she did the cooking. A little bit of decor sure gives a nice Chinese New Year feel to the house. Otherwise, it will be just like any other day. But not too much though – once when I first learnt how to make ang pao lanterns, I went round asking from all the banks and made a whole lot to hang in the house – they all commented that the place looked like a temple… 😦

  15. I loved your wife’s baked chicken wings! Your Thai chilli sauce noodles were awesome too, couldn’t stop eating them! 🙂

    Happy CNY to you and your family Arthur!

    Thanks. Oops! You had a similar comment in the later post…but it’s fine. The more the merrier. Haven’t been getting many comments these few days – everybody’s too busy, I guess. 😦

  16. Wow….your missus ‘slaved’ and cooked 6 dishes just for the 2 of you….all look yummy. My favourites would be the soup and that crispy looking lor bak! 😀

    Her family was coming the next day for dinner, my in-laws – we always have them over every year so she was cooking as much as she could for that and we got to eat a bit first. Two birds with one stone. The cooking continued the next day but not that much already, most of it already done – sure had a lot of dishes for all of us, post on that coming right up…tomorrow.

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