Yauatcha's Chinese New Year Recipes

The Michelin-starred dim sum restaurant shares its recipes for a tasty Chinese New Year

Our inspiration for this year’s specials came from exploring the traditions and symbols which are important at Chinese at New Year, which is on the January 31.

During this period, mandarins are given as a sign of good luck and fortune. So we decided to use the fruit to flavour our dishes.

Also important is the colour red. In China red envelopes are given to loved ones with money inside. So we wanted that to feature, too.

Now, there is also something else, too: the Chinese Lantern festival, with its beautiful oval lanterns.

We took all these ideas, and more, and combined them into three lovely desserts, the recipes for which are below.

Be warned, they're not easy dishes to make. But have a go, don't worry if you don't at first succeed.

RED MACARONS – MAKES 20 5cm Macarons

600 Ground Almonds

600g Icing sugar

220g Egg whites

  • Mix ingredients together until smooth.



Macaron Base

150g Ground Almonds

150g Icing sugar

55g egg whites

10g red colour


Italian meringue

55g egg whites

150g caster sugar

60g water

  1. To prepare macaron base, beat the icing sugar, ground almonds, red colour and egg whites in a bowl until smooth.
  2. Place egg whites into a mixing bowl, whisk, on low speed.
  3. Place caster sugar and water in a pan and cook the sugar, then egg whites and 20g caster sugar.
  4. Pour the sugar over the egg whites and whisk until the meringue has cooled and is firm.
  5. Mix the meringue into the macaron base in stages ensuring the mixture is smooth and glossy.
  6. Line a baking tray with baking paper, fill a piping bag with the mixture and pipe 4cm diameter balls with the macaron mix.
  7. Tap the tray gently to allow macarons to spread and settle.
  8. Place in pre-heated oven (130) and cook for 15 minutes until cooked. Remove from the oven and cool.


180g whipping cream
20ml mandarin Liqueur

165g Dark chocolate 70%
70g butter – chopped softened

8g Orange Zest

  1. Bring whipping cream to boil in a pan, add orange zest and infuse for 20-30 minutes.
  2. Strain the whipping cream into another pan, and place the chocolate into a mixing bowl.
  3. Bring the infused cream back to the boil, pour over the chocolate, and stir until a ganache is formed.
  4. Gradually add the softened butter, and mix fully.

  To finish

  • Place the ganache in a piping bag, pipe around the edge of one half macaron.  
  • Stick a second half macaron to the base.


  • Cut out the stencils on thick plastic to draw or pipe  the design with black icing onto the top of the macaron.         


You will need:

12 x oval mousse rings – lined with acetate strips and placed onto a tray lined with baking paper.

Chocolate sable

85g plain flour

15g cocoaq powder

1 pinch salt

40g icing sugar

70g butter

1.Place the icing sugar, flour, cocoa powder and salt into a bowl, rub in the flour and mix until a dough is formed.

2.Roll out 4mm thick and place in fridge for 30 minutes.

3.Cut out 12 x 40mm diameter discs and 12 x 20mm diameter discs and place on tray lined with a non-stick paper.

4.Place into the pre heated oven and cook for 12-15 minutes. And allow to cool, then brush with edible gold glitter.



Sacher sponge – make 1 sheet 40cmx30cm

150g Dark chocolate 70%

135g unsalted butter

135g ground almonds

80g egg yolks                                                   

35g Plain flour sieved                                                   

120g egg whites

135g castor sugar

  • Pre heat the oven to 190C
  • Place the chocolate and butter into a mixing bowl and melt together. Mix in the egg yolks.
  • Whisk egg whites to make a meringue, add caster sugar and whisk until firm.
  • Fold the meringue into the chocolate, butter and egg yolk base, and fold in the flour and almonds.
  • Spread onto a baking tray to create a sheet, and place into the preheated oven for 10-12 minutes. Allow to cool.
  • Line a 30 x 30 cm  baking tin or mousse ring with baking paper. Trim the sponge so that it fits into the mould and place inside.


Jasmine ganache

165g whipping cream

10g Jasmine tea

115g Dark chocolate 66% cocoa solids

45g unsalted butter, softened

  1. Place the cream in a pan and bring to the boil, add in the orange zest and infuse for 20-30 minutes.
  2. Strain the cream into another pan, and place the chocolate into a mixing bowl.
  3. Bring the cream back to the boil, pour over the chocolate, and stir until a ganache consistency is formed.
  4. Add in the softened butter, mix until emulsified, then pour onto the top of the sponge and place into the fridge to set.
  • Peel and segment the mandarins and place on top of jasmine ganache.

Jasmine and caramelised honey pannacotta

675g whipping cream

225g Whole Milk

130g Honey

6g leaf Gelatine

12g jasmine tea


  • Place the cream and the milk together in a pan and bring to the boil, add in the jasmine tea and cover with cling film and allow to infuse for 30 minutes
  • Strain the mixture into a container. Place the leaf gelatine into a container of cold water and soak until it has softened, once softened strain off the excess water. 
  • Place the honey into a pan and cook on a moderate heat until the honey starts to gently smoke and caramelise.
  • Add the infused cream and milk to the caramelised honey, bring to the boil and then add in the gelatine, allow to cool to room temperature then pour into the top of the  mandarin segments, place the layered centre into the freezer to set for at least 4 hours
  • Remove from the freezer and lift out from the mould, cut into 2.5cm x 4.5 cm rectangles and return to the freezer until required



Jasmine and chocolate mousse

100g Whole Milk

100g Whipping Cream

15g Jasmine Tea

65g egg yolks

20g castor sugar

375g Milk Chocolate 40% cocoa solids

375g Whipping Cream

9g Leaf Gelatine

  • Place the milk and the 10g whipping cream into a pan and bring to the boil, add in the jasmine tea and Clingfilm and allow to infuse for 30 minutes
  • Meanwhile melt the milk chocolate
  • Once infused, strain the mixture into another pan, place back onto the heat and bring to the boil
  • In a small bowl, whisk together the egg yolks and caster sugar
  • Place the gelatin into cold water and allow to softened, once softened strain off the excess water.
  • Once the cream has boiled, add half to the egg yolks mixture and mix well, return this mixture all back into the pan.
  • On a moderate heat stir continuously until the mixture reaches 83C, pass through a fine sieve onto the chocolate.
  • Mix until a smooth ganache consistency is formed
  • Meanwhile place the 375g of whipping cream into a mixing bowl and whisk until soft peaks form.
  • Fold the whipped cream into the chocolate base in three parts
  • Fill the oval moulds ¾ full with the chocolate and jasmine mousse, push in the layered centre so that the sponge touches the flat side of the oval mould.
  • Place into the freezer to set for at least 4 hours
  • Take the moulds from the freezer and remove from the ring and peel of the plastic.
  • Place onto a tray evenly spaced out with the sponge side touching the tray and return to the freezer.


Red chocolate spray

200g white chocolate

60g Raspberry red cocoa butter

40g Orange cocoa butter

50g cocoa butter


Melt all ingredients together, strain through a sieve and place into a spray gun.

Take the tray from the freezer and evenly spray all the cakes from all sides. Return to the freezer


Chinese Character Design

  • Black cocoa butter
  • Melt the cocoa butter and then pass through a fine muslin cloth, place into a spray gun or airbrush and using the stencils created spray onto the front of each of the petit gateaux.
  • Place onto the larger chocolate sable then top with the smaller disc of sable


To celebrate New Year, the Year of The Horse, Yauatcha has joined forces with Harvey Nichols. Until 10th February, guests can check out the Harvey Nichols-designed windows of the restaurant, themed around the horse, and each diner will receive an envelope containing Harvey Nichols' treats, eight of which will contain golden prizes.


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