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Imperial Dragons, Tea Eggs and Cherries in the Snow

The air was frosty and heavy with the sense of impending snow as I drove to cooking club Monday night. How lovely it was to walk in the door and have a piping hot cup of Darren’s Imperial Dragon Well tea to warm me up.

We were a small group this week, many of the others out of town for work or getting ready for a wedding, and we sat companionably in the kitchen visiting away as all sorts of scrumptious smells wafted out of pots simmering on the stove.

At last it was time to eat, one course at a time.

We started with Toby’s Chinese Tea Eggs, beautifully crackled and browned from the marinade. Alas, soy sauce was forgotten in all bustle, so they weren’t quite as dark as they should’ve been, but they were still delicious. Especially with a light dusting of salt.

Jon went rogue with a savory Thai soup instead of a Chinese dish, but after one spoonful not one of us complained. Rich with coconut milk, fish sauce and cilantro, this soup was the perfect warming dish for a snowy night.

Kat and I closed the meal with our own version of Cherries in the Snow. Squares of silky, foam-topped almond gelatin were layered in a bowl and smothered with a decadent Dried Cherry Port Wine sauce steeped with black peppercorns and star anise. Oooeee! At once comforting and exotic, the dish was a light and soothing end to our month of Chinese feasting.

All too soon it was time to bundle up and skid carefully across icy streets to our snow-capped cars and drive home.

What is your favorite cold weather soup?

Jon’s Thai Soup

Ingredients:

4 cans coconut milk
3 Tbs fish sauce
2 cups vegetable broth
1 yellow bell pepper
1 red bell pepper
1/4 of a large green chile
1 cup kale
2 chicken breasts, thinly sliced into medallions
3 Tbs red curry paste
2 tsp curry powder
1/2 onion
1 cup cilantro

Directions:

  1. Sautee all the vegetables in a dash of olive oil until soft.
  2. In another pan, add all the coconut milk, broth, fish sauce, and curry. Stir and bring to boil.
  3. Add the cilantro and the chicken. Boil for a couple minutes until the chicken is cooked through.
  4. Add the vegetables, return to boil, remove from heat and serve.

Toby’s Tea Eggs

Click here to view the recipe at Steamy Kitchen

Kat and Krista’s Cherries in the Snow

Click here to view the recipe at Epicurious

Notes: we added black peppercorns and star anise to the cherry sauce, and used almond milk in the gelatin.

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MiraUncut - wow, that soup looks amazing. I never heard of those eggs. you learn something new every day.

Anna Johnston - That looks such a wonderful meal Krista, I love the eggs, don’t they look a treat huh πŸ™‚

Brenna [fabuleuxdestin] - Yumm – everything looks so yummy and foreign! I love butternut squash and pumpkin soup in the fall. I don’t have a blender here though, so i’ve been sticking with lentil soups this winter! Will have to try your recipe!

Kat - Krista, we also added a few cloves. I doubled the recipe, and we served six with extra helpings of cherries.

MaryMoh - That’a a lovely feast. I really love that soup. My favourite soup for winter would be chicken ginger wine soup…very warming.

RamblingTart - Thank you so much, Joumana. πŸ™‚ I’m thrilled you’ve conquered your fear of coconut milk. May it bring you much happiness. πŸ™‚

RamblingTart - We certainly can dream, Karen. πŸ™‚ I still think about that stretch of beach. Twas like something out of a dream. πŸ™‚

RamblingTart - Aww, thanks, Tuula! πŸ™‚ I had a chuckle as I wrote it. I’m glad it amused you too. πŸ™‚

RamblingTart - I love Broccoli and Cheese Soup too, Mary. πŸ™‚ I will have to try the other one you mentioned!

RamblingTart - I’m so glad you like that shot too, Paradis. πŸ™‚ It made me grin when I saw how it came out. πŸ™‚

RamblingTart - These ones weren’t, Linda, but I’m sure those would work just dandy. πŸ™‚

RamblingTart - Thank you, Barbara! I confess it made me smile too. πŸ™‚

tasteofbeirut - Such an exotic display! I love the photos as always (beautiful) and the Thai soup sounds incredible, especially now that I have conquered my fear of coconut milk~

Karen - Another delicious feast!! My favorite would have to be the dessert. Mmmmm! Your pictures from Fiji are gorgeous, especially that beautiful stretch of beach with the pink wildflowers. One can dream, right?! πŸ™‚

Tuula - Delish – a very lovely evening indeed. But also I can’t stop cracking up about the line “Jon went rogue…” lol, just great!

Mary - It sounds like another fabulous get together. I love your soup. My winter favorites are Tom Kae Gai or Broccoli and Cheese. Have a great day. Blessings…Mary

mlleparadis - your scones looked PERFECT! (might have to make some now!)

and the photo of the tea, madly fantastical! really! i would love some wallpaper from that the colors are just gorgeous!

LindyLouMac - I have to agree with the previous commenter. Also are Tea Eggs Quails Eggs?

Barbara - Eventhe title of this post sounds wonderful.

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