Plan a China Night

You can bring a little bit of the Far East home with these super-simple dishes, easy-to-do crafts, and more.



What to Serve
Fried rice
Scramble a couple of eggs. Remove them from the pan. Heat a couple of tablespoons of oil and add four cups of cooked rice. Stir-fry a few minutes, then add a little soy sauce and the eggs. Mix in a chopped green onion and some cooked chicken or beef. Serve with a side of sauce: Mix soy sauce, chicken broth, and powdered ginger, then thicken with cornstarch.

Fortune cookies
Although fortune cookies aren’t really a traditional Chinese dessert, your guests will have fun opening them after the meal. Find them in the Asian aisle of your grocery store.?

What to Make
Goldfish kite
Goldfish are a symbol of good luck in China. To keep that luck flying all year, have your child make a goldfish kite. Cover a cardboard toilet-paper roll with orange tissue paper. Draw eyes. Then use long streamers of orange tissue paper to make its “fins.” Tape two short pieces of string inside the “mouth” end of the roll and attach the other ends of the strings to a stick or dowel. When your daughter and her guests run with the kite, the “fins” will flutter in the breeze.?

What to Wear
Another symbol of good fortune and joy: the color red. If you’ve got a red blouse, let your daughter wear it kimono-style over a pair of red or yellow (the color of heroism) leggings or pants. Cinch the blouse with a yellow or red belt.

What to Say
Greet your guests by saying, “Welcome” in Chinese: “hyan ying” (pronounced “hwan yeeng”). To say, “please,” say, “qing,” which is pronounced, “ching.” And “thank you” is pronounced, “she-ay, she-ay.”?

What to Read
Miss Frizzle’s Adventures: Imperial China by Joanna Cole (Scholastic, ages 4 to 8). Everyone’s favorite teacher ditches the Magic School Bus in favor of time travel, going back 1,000 years to teach her students about growing rice, making silk, and visiting the Great Wall. 

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