Chinese New Year party: The Art of Take-Out

In major cities across the country lucky enough to have Chinatowns, there will be many celebrations of the Chinese New Year starting with the new moon on January 30th this year.  Philadelphia hosts many Lion Dance parades throughout the month of February and it is one of our family’s favorite destinations.

image The lion is a symbol of prosperity and good luck.  Being this lion is believed to be vegetarian,  businesses try to lure him to their door with hanging vegetables and fireworks.  No visit to Chinatown is complete without sampling the wonderful cuisine.image

Throwing a Chinese New Year party is a fun way to bring the festivities home.  Ordering take-out makes this an easy party idea. And who doesn’t love Chinese food?   This post will show you how I set up a buffet table to celebrate the arrival of the Year of the Horse.

For linens I chose a fiery orange and gold throw I felt had some Asian flair.


Glitzy Chinese take out containers were used to hold disposable chopsticks

image and fun spikey decorations that resemble fireworks.image

I stacked black plates I had and brought out a black lacquered tray to corral fortune cookies, a lacquered chest and the take out containers.

image  A Chinese warrior statue bought as a souvenir  provides thematic interest.   A buddha statue, a colorful fan or a horse statue would work here also. A black wrought iron candelabra creates ambiance and height.  A trio of sparkly spheres heighten the festive mood.  The take-out containers, sparklers and spheres were purchased in the 90% off Christmas clearance bin at Michael’s this week.

imageMy  dear Chinese friend Hui taught me to make dumplings and they are the extent of my Chinese cooking repertoire.  The rest of the feast will be delivered from our favorite local Chinese restaurant. There you have it!  An easy party where take-out dishes are company worthy by elevating them with a festive buffet décor.   This party is ready to go!


Happy New Year of the Horse!  May it be a year of good fortune, good health, and good luck.  I hope to have inspired you to get creative throwing your own Chinese New Year party!



5 thoughts on “Chinese New Year party: The Art of Take-Out

  1. We seem to have a couple of traits in common: love of great bargains (I shop after-holiday sales as if someone was giving away permanent un-wrinkle cream!) and ease of serving so that the ambience can get a little extra attention. Sure, I cook…as you do, too, with your artisan bread genius. But let’s face it…nobody can cook Chinese food like a Chinese restaurant! It’s like it’s some unwritten yet highly understood law of the land. Try as I may, mine NEVER tastes anywhere near what that from an authentic restaurant tastes like. So goody, goody…I get to make a takeout phone call and pour all my energy into the table design. What a wonderful world!

    I love your warrior! He’s perfect for this buffet table. I also like the tutorial you rendered here. Very helpful for those who don’t have a clue, and a great refresher for those “old hands” on deck. 🙂

    • Thank you for your thoughtful comments Alycia! Are you in KC? I have all of Nell Hill’s books and hope to visit her store someday! Have you checked out the French tablescaper’s page: Les Tables de Stef? She has published a second book which I found on Amazon. I think you would like her work. The blog I think you could translate. I appreciate your generous comments! I was so excited to find them waiting for me. I’ve been inspired dby your blog for several months now. I will comment more often! And I do love a bargain! The sparkly purple tulip vase in the Mardi Gras post? $9 on clearance at Home Goods!
      Keep up your inspiring work! Johanne

  2. Pingback: Chinese New Year: Noodle Bowls with Ginger-Garlic Meatballs | French Gardener Dishes

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