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Make-ahead Monday: Steamed whole fish and pineapple cake for Lunar New Year

Joanne Change makes Lunar New Year entertaining easy with prep-ahead whole steamed fish and pineapple upside-down cake.
/ Source: TODAY

One of the biggest challenges of entertaining is getting everything done before your guests arrive. It's no fun being stuck in the kitchen while your friends and family celebrate. Chef Joanne Chang is solving that problem just in time for Lunar New Year. Elements of each of her festive dishes can be made the day before to save precious time the day they're going to be served. She shares her prep-ahead recipes for whole steamed fish and pineapple upside-down cake.

For Lunar New Year it is traditional to eat a whole fish because the word for fish is similar to the word for surplus. You prepare a whole fish to have good luck in the beginning and end of the New Year as well as throughout the year.

Old-Fashioned Pineapple Upside-Down Cake

Pineapples symbolize luck and wealth and thus are very popular during Lunar New Year. The word for pineapple in some Chinese dialects sounds like prosperity.

If you like those celebratory recipes, you should also try these:

Stir-Fried Noodles with Shrimp and Vegetables