Food of Fortune

Food is the cornerstone of every celebration; Chinese New Year is no exception. However, not all food is equal, some certain dishes with their symbolic meaning are served during this festivity.

Food is the cornerstone of every celebration; Chinese New Year is no exception. However, not all food is equal, some certain dishes with their symbolic meaning are served during this festivity.

FISH
In Chinese, fish has the same sound as ‘surplus’. The fish is also served as a whole to represent unity. It also should be noted that the fish are eaten last at a meal and some of it are used as leftover for the  next day to signify that the prosperity overflow.

Dumplings
dimsum

Dumpling eaten during the New Year are shaped to look like ingot (Chinese gold bar) which personifies wealth. On New Year, it is a tradition to eat dumplings with cabbage and radish, for fair skin and gentle mood.

Spring Rolls
springrolls

The name is derived from the tradition to eat this food during the Spring Festival. Spring rolls are served on the New Year because the golden color represent gold bars which symbolize wealth. The filling of spring rolls usually consist of vegetables, meat, or something sweet.

Longevity Noodles
As the name suggest, longevity noodles symbolize a wish for longevity.  Their length and preparation are also symbolic of the eater’s life. The noddles served on New Year are longer than normal noodles and uncut.

CHICKEN
Chicken represents prosperity and rebirth. The chicken should be presented with head, tail and feet, because doing so symbolizes completeness.

Good Fortune Fruit
The most common fruit eaten during the celebration are tangerines, oranges, and pomeloes. They are selected as they have  round shape and golden in color which  symbolize prosperity and wealth.

Yu Sheng
The tradition of Yu Sheng or Lo Hei originated from the phrase’s Cantonese meaning of ‘tossing up good fortune’ using raw fish salad which symbolizes an ‘abundance of wealth and long life’.


Written by FoodieS January 25, 2017.

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