Singapore — The Chinese New Year wouldn’t get off to a good start without the all-important reunion dinner. It is the pivotal meal of the season as the family table is laden with auspicious eats that symbolise a prosperous year ahead.
In these busy times, however, many families have turned to restaurants for their reunion feasts. But while dining out has its merits (no need to do the post-dinner dishes, for starters), there is nothing like enjoying a meal around the family dinner table.
So an increasing number of restaurants are offering reunion dinner menus designed to be eaten in the comfort of home. Majestic Restaurant, for instance, offers a five-course takeaway set that comprises Atlantic salmon yusheng, roasted duck and steamed rice with Chinese sausages and preserved meats.
Its chef-owner Yong Bing Ngen said dishes like these are easy to handle and convenient to bring home. Most need to be heated up in the microwave oven before they are ready to be devoured.
Most restaurants say they started offering full reunion dinner menus due to popular demand. “We have a lot of regulars who live in the area and they’ve been asking about Chinese New Year menus since early December,” said Chef Tan Yong Hua, owner of Restaurant Home.
Naturally, these menus come with all the requisite CNY dishes such as yusheng, pen chai, and rice with waxed meats. To control the quality of the dishes, restaurants like Majestic offer only a limited number of takeaway sets.
“Having a sumptuous meal at home beats going to a restaurant, especially if you have lots of young children in the family,” said Pang Siew Wen, a Marketing Manager, whose family has ordered a four-course meal from its favourite Chinese restaurant.
“My mother used to cook a grand meal for the family, but now that she’s older, she can no longer do it,” she continued. “Most of us work, so it isn’t possible to whip up the same kind of feast that Mum used to.”
If you’re in the same predicament, here’s a list of restaurants offering grand, easy feasts that your family can bond over this Chinese New Year’s Eve.
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