Heirloom Misua Soup for the New Year for lots and lots of Good Luck

26.1.12 0 comments
A lot of my non-Chinese friends and colleagues have often asked me what Chinese New Year is. What is it like- and how is it celebrated?
I often answer "much like Christmas". And their eyes would go BIG. Like with gifts? Followed by "so where are our gifts"? Thus, I take it back. It's not like Christmas. And there are no gifts- only little red glittery envelopes (you only see the glitters when you're the receiver) *with your luck for the year* in form of $$$ inside. hehehe

I guess the significant change in decor from the typical Christmas tree to the Huge Pineapple Lanterns signals a totally different holiday. But for me, Christmas and Chinese New Year are actually just that: a change in decor- (and sometimes not even =) ). Traditions that are worlds apart but still as festive in every sense and have become more alike in a household that is both Chinese and Filipino.

And they meet once more in food, specifically breakfast.

Misua is a holiday staple in our household. I'm already not very sure if it is the festive atmosphere, or the impeccable-nothing-can-come-close-to-it taste, or its scarcity (only during special occasions), or how we all- cousins and relatives included come together for it or the promise of long life and good luck that we look forward to. But misua is something our family (prepares for hours) and enjoys heartily during Christmas, New Year and ALL birthdays. I want to believe that it has given us a lot of life, laughter, and yes good luck- thus, I urge all of you to try this in your homes.

Pretty tasty. Super Lucky. Sharing with you a priced possession from our household.No shortcuts here.

Chicken Misua Soup for good luck

1 whole Tagalog Chicken (free range and the tougher but more flavorful variety of chicken)
6-8 C water
salt, pepper

2 C finely chopped shallots
1/2 kg peeled shrimp
1/4 kg sliced pork, julienne
5-6 dried shitake mushrooms, soaked in water overnight, julienne
Salt and pepper
Soy Sauce
1/2 kg Misua
12 hard boiled eggs
Green onion
Oil for frying

What to do:
1. Prepare the soup by boiling the cleaned Tagalog chicken in 6-8 cups water, making sure chicken is fully submerged. Boil over low heat until chicken is tender and falls off the bones (roughly 2 1/2 hours). Season with salt and pepper.
2. Drain, saving the soup for later.
3. Shred meat of the chicken and set aside. (Similar to how you would do a pulled pork- which should be easy in this case since the chicken meat would be very tender)
4. In a wok, fry (not just saute) shallots until brown and crispy. Set aside 1/2 of the shallots- making sure excess oil is removed.
5. In a separate wok, stir fry the shrimp, followed by the pork julienne, and dried shitake mushrooms. Season with salt, pepper and soy sauce.
6. Add half of the shallots and all of the shredded chicken. Continue to sautee until everything is cooked through. Meanwhile, bring the soup to a boil in a separate pot.  
7. Add about 2 cups of the boiling soup to the wok.
8. Add misua to the soup, cook for about 3 minutes, and transfer the contents of the wok to the boiling misua soup. Mix everything together. Adjust taste if necessary by adding salt and pepper.

Serve in with hardboiled egg (for more good luck and prosperity), shallots and chopped green onions.

Enjoy =)

Here are also other things to keep the luck coming for the year:
- Round fruits: since currency in the olden times were in coins, round fruits are said to give prosperity and good fortune throughout the year, and our fridge is obviously overstocked with them =)
- Candies: serve to guests who come to your house to make your relationship always harmonious
- Tikoy sweet sticky rice cake: for togetherness
- Small round fruits with little pineapple: hang them in your main door, it said to usher in good luck and good health.

A prosperous and happy year of the Water Dragon to all =)



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