Digging out tried-and-tested roast recipes; online browsing for a new ugly sweater; making shopping lists; stocking up on candles to fill the house with sweet musky scents … It’s the time of year when everyone’s running in all directions doing the same things to prepare for the festive fun. Find out how Esther Sham is celebrating Christmas.
When Esther Sham isn’t busy cooking up a storm in the kitchen, the chef and owner of Maison ES and Ta-Pantry is running around taking care of her children and pets. Welcoming her fourth child to the family this year, Esther is excited about her baby girl joining the Tan clan and learning the ropes from her siblings.
How do you celebrate Christmas?
Cooking is my love language. I’m very lazy about cooking for myself but I’d run to make food for a loved one the second they tell me they’re hungry. Unsurprisingly, Christmas is the perfect time for me to spread my love, so you’ll find me in the kitchen a lot during this time of year.
Do you have any Christmas family traditions?
Hosting dinner for friends and family is a must. We also have an annual tradition of taking a family portrait with all of us dressed in red outfits in front of the Christmas tree. The photo is what we use as our holiday card that we send to friends and family.
What would a Christmas feast look like hosted by you?
A warm and cosy table setting with an endless train of good food and good wines.
What’s on your wishlist this year?
What I want the most is to travel with the family again after being stuck in Hong Kong for the past three years. I’d like to take everyone to a resort, somewhere far away where we can relax and unwind.
What was your biggest challenge and accomplishment in 2022?
I’ve gone through three pregnancies before this year, all with different challenges and complications. But welcoming my fourth child was tough because I was pregnant with her during the fifth wave of Covid. I was basically on house arrest for the first half of 2022.