My family has had Chinese food around Christmas for as long as I can remember. The tradition started many years ago when we used to go to my great granny’s for Christmas eve. She would make her perogies from scratch, but as she was quite old, we would bring in Chinese food for the rest of the dinner, so there was less for her to do. We’d get Chinese food, not because it goes particularly well with perogies, but because Chinese restaurants are often some of the only ones that are open on Christmas eve.
We continued having Chinese food on Christmas Eve, even after my granny passed away, however in the past couple of years the tradition has changed a little and we now go for Chinese on Boxing Day. My family’s favourite Chinese restaurant in Edmonton is The Lingnan. We continued the tradition this year and headed to the Lingnan with Lauren’s family on Boxing Day.
The Lingnan is totally decked out with “authentic” Chinese decorations. It always feels very festive inside. The restaurant also uses the old school paper placemats with cocktails all over it. It’s always fun to order a fancy drink, they go down very easy.
This time I chose a Tom Collins, although it looked very different from the one shown on the menu. The drink on the menu was orange, however the drink I was served was a very hazardous looking green colour. I think they used lime syrup instead of lemon… at least that’s what I hope happened. My drink tasted good though and that’s all that really matters.
For dinner, we shared a bunch of different items. Luckily I still had the note on my iPhone from last Boxing Day where I wrote down our order, so ordering was very easy. Same as last year!
We started with Vietnamese Spring Rolls. They were nice and crispy, without being too greasy. They were served with a sweet chili sauce for dipping.
The food all came out pretty quickly. The Crispy Nest with Chicken is a chicken and vegetable stir fry in a “crispy nest.” The nest is actually deep-fried potatoes shaped into a basket. The stir fry isn’t bad, a little bland for my taste, what I like best is the nest.
The Hot and Dry Chicken is probably one of the most popular items on the menu. Spicy, deep-fried chicken… yum. You can also get this chicken at Chicken For Lunch downtown, that is, if you get there early enough to avoid the crazy long line up.
My favourite dish is the Kung Pao Chicken. I really like the spicy flavour and the crunch of the cashews and little croutons. I’m not sure why there are little croutons in this, but they taste so good.
The pea pods were a nice, fresh, green addition to the meal.
The pork fried rice was a solid choice. There was a good amount of BBQ pork in the rice and not too much egg, which works out well for me.
The beef chow mein was good, although the beef had a little bit of a weird texture. Maybe like it had a little too much tenderizer on it? Either way, the noodles satisfied my noodle craving.
The Lingnan has both Szechuan and Ginger Beef on the menu and every time we go, I can never remember which is the one that we want. I always have to ask the waiter and the funny thing is that they alway know exactly which one we want…. the less authentic, more Americanized one. 🙂
Our meal at the Lingnan was great. There was more than enough food for all of us and the service was awesome, as usual. After dinner we headed to go see a movie, another Stanley Boxing Day tradition. This year we went to see Les Miserables. I thought they did a great job adapting the stage play to the big screen and I cried my eyes out, as I expected I would.
Well, that’s it for the 12 Posts of Christmas! I hope the posts were enjoyable to read, if nothing else it kept me on a good blogging schedule throughout December. It’s hard to believe that Christmas is over and that 2012 is wrapping up.