Yusheng with Lox
Serves around 6
The ritual of eating Yusheng is common in Singapore, Malaysia, and Indonesia throughout the Lunar New Year season. This recipe uses lox instead of raw fish, which adds a smoky element to the salad. It also replaces plum sauce with an American Jewish favorite, Gold’s Sweet and Sour Duck Sauce (an American Chinese version of plum sauce). Sometimes I change up the ingredients slightly depending on what is in season where I live. This salad is full of beautiful colors and textures in every bite!
FOR THE SAUCE
4.5 tbsp Gold’s Sweet and Sour Duck Sauce (or replace with 3 tbsp plum sauce, 1.5 tbsp apricot jam)
1.5 tsp sesame oil
1/4 tsp ground white pepper
dash of cinnamon powder
dash of 5-spice powder
juice from 1 lemon
1 tsp sugar, optional
FOR THE SALAD
200g/7oz lox or smoked salmon (or sashimi grade salmon)
1/3 cup carrot, peeled & julienned
1/3 cup white radish, peeled & julienned
1/3 cup watermelon radish or purple daikon, peeled & julienned
1/3 cup green daikon, peeled & julienned
1/3 cup cucumber, thinly sliced
1 pomelo or grapefruit, peeled, membranes removed, loosely broken into pieces
2 kiwis, peeled & julienned
1/3 cup green papaya, cantaloupe, or mango, julienned
1/4 cup pickled red onion slices
1/4 cup scallions, thinly sliced lengthwise, cut into 2” strips
2 tbsp pickled ginger
Large handful of deep fried wonton strips
1/2 cup cilantro leaves
2 tbsp crispy fried shallots, optional
1 lime, sliced in half
Feel free to experiment with other ingredients. see below recipe for other ideas.
1 tsp toasted sesame seeds
3 tbsp roasted peanuts, chopped
dash of white pepper (in a red New Year packet)
dash of 5-spice powder (in a red New Year packet)
TO MAKE THE SAUCE
Combine all sauce ingredients (except sugar) in a jar and shake until well combined. Taste and add sugar or more lemon juice, if necessary.
TO ASSEMBLE THE SALAD
Roll lox into a rose shape by overlapping lox slices in a straight line. Start at one end and roll up into a rose shape. Place lox roses in the center of a large serving platter.
Arrange the rest of the salad ingredients around the lox, each in its own separate pile (do not mix together yet).
To the side or the salad, place two red New Years packets, each filled with spices. Place sauce in a bowl to the side. Fill two smaller bowls separately with sesame seeds and peanuts.
When ready to serve, gather everyone around the table, sprinkle the sesame seeds, peanuts, spices and dressing over the salad. Each ingredient has a corresponding greeting. Have everyone toss the salad as high as possible with their chopsticks while calling out their wishes for the new year!
Some alternative ingredient ideas:
Lox, smoked salmon, or sashimi grade salmon
Carrot, purple daikon, green daikon, pickled ginger, white radish, watermelon radish, turnips, red cabbage, jicama, cilantro, cucumber, pickled red onions, scallions
Pomelo, grapefruit, mango, mandarin orange, green mango, green papaya, kiwi, cantaloupe
Roasted chopped peanuts, toasted sesame seeds, fried wonton strips, crispy chow mein noodles, crispy shallots