Ring in the Chinese New Year with these traditional favorites from Scott Drewno, executive chef of Ruby Foo's Restaurant in New York City:

• Lobster Dumplings

½ pound lobster meat (rough chopped)
1 pound shrimp (rough chopped)
¼ cup chopped cilantro
¼ cup chopped scallions

¼ cup ginger (minced)
¼ cup garlic (minced)
½ cup bamboo shoots (minced)
½ cup water chestnuts (minced)
½ cup carrots (minced)

Sautéed and deglaze with dry white wine
Fold vegetable mixture into lobster and shrimp, add 1 egg, season with salt, pepper, cilantro, and sesame oil
Place a tablespoon of filling mixture into dumpling skin and fold

• Hot and Sour Soup

¼ cup ginger
¼ cup garlic
1 cup shredded carrots
1 cup shredded wood ear mushrooms
1 cup thinly sliced aged tofu
½ cup Shaoxing (rice wine)
1 gallon chicken stock
1/4 cup cornstarch (mixed with water)
1/2 cup egg whites
1/4 cup superior soy sauce
2 tbl. Sambal (chili paste)
1/4 cup white vinegar
1 tbl. sesame oil

Sauté first five ingredients in a stockpot. Cook three to four minutes over high heat, stirring constantly. Add rice wine. Cook an additional three to four minutes. Add chicken stock. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer and cook four one hour. Return soup to a boil, add cornstarch. Soup will thicken slightly. Slowly whisk in egg whites. Season with remaining ingredients and serve.

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