Qi Yuan Restaurant
Lucky set meals
By Joan Chang Translated by Ann Lee
Photos by Andy Lin
489, FuJin St
Hours: 11:30 am-2 pm, 5:30-8:30 pm
Credit cards accepted. No service charge.
Qi Yuan serves up all kinds of dishes and snacks. Their Shepherd's Purse (Chinese spinach) dumplings (10 for NT$100) not only taste wonderful, but are also prepared in a very special way. The chef, Mr. Chen, explains that the trick to making delicious dumplings is all in the knife work, the cooking temperature, the handling technique, and the sauces and spices.
This Chinese New Year, Chen is introducing three set meals that represent good fortune and happiness. The meals can be enjoyed in the restaurant on Chinese New Year's Eve or can be taken away and eaten at home. The Four Seasons' Fortunes Feast (serves 4-6, NT$3,600) includes four combo dishes, four main courses, and one soup dish. Some delectable dishes in this set meal are the crispy Crystal Jellyfish and Chen's exclusive Braised Three Moon Beef Combo (紅燒三叉月). Chen learned how to make the Stewed Pork Ballin Brown Sauce Hot Pot (清燉獅子頭火鍋), another main course, from master chefs in Dalian, China.
The second set meal, the Five Blessings For The Elderly (五福臨門) meal, consists of five combo dishes, six main courses and one pot of soup. One appetizer is the sweet Four Seasons Roasted Bran (四季拷麩). Chen created the Wu Fu Pot (五福臨門鍋), which contains egg dumplings, ham, wheat gluten, cabbage rolls and thin bean noodles.
The third set meal, Yangzhou Santouyan, or Three Head's Feast (揚州三頭宴), serves 10 to 12 people and costs NT$8,800. This magnificent spread includes six combo dishes, six main courses, and six soups. The flavor of the pig's head (and all the other parts) in the soup is mellowed by Huang-Jiou and Shao-Xing, two types of Chinese hard liquor. This dish not only takes a long time to make, but also has a very meticulous cooking process, which is why we leave it to the experts. From now until end of January, call ahead for reservations and get your own fabulous array of Chinese New Year specialty dishes.