One of the most important parts of a cultural celebration is food, and Chinese New Year is no exception! Check out the rich celebrations associated with this holiday, and of course, some yummy Chinese New Year foods.
Chinese New Year celebrates the beginning of a new year on the lunar calendar. It's also called "Lunar New Year" or "Spring Festival," a 15-day festival in China and Chinese communities worldwide, beginning with the new moon. This year, it culminates on Friday, February 21, 2021.
A "reunion dinner," typically celebrated by Vietnamese and Chinese families on the eve of the New Year, is one of the most cherished traditions, complete with a variety of foods.
It's important to note that billions of diverse people worldwide celebrate the Chinese Spring Festival. So each family will pick and choose their favorite foods, influenced by their regional family traditions.
Chinese New Year celebrators incorporate many symbolic elements in Lunar New Year dishes. These include how the food sounds when its name is spoken out loud, its preparation, and how it's served. All of these can make these dishes more meaningful. Here are some other ideas:
Check out these side and main dishes you can prepare for your Chinese New Year:
A sweet, Chinese treat that's best shared with family and friends on Chinese New Year!
glutinous rice flour
dark brown sugar
Prepare the banana leaves
Blanch the banana leaves in hot boiling water for about 5 minutes to soften it. Pat dry and set aside.
Cut the banana leaves into 7-inch width and about 7-8 inch length. Line the leaf horizontally and then vertically like a "+" (overlapping at the bottom of the dish) and then diagonally like an "X" to make sure I cover all the side and bottom of the dish. Repeat this pattern for 2 more times. For slow cooker, skip down to slow cooker to read the instruction
Nian gao batter
Place both sugar, ginger, and water in a saucepan and bring to a gentle simmer or until sugar is melted. Remove from the heat and let it cool down completely. Remove the ginger.
Gradually pour the sugar mixture into the flour and stir until smooth. Then stir in the vanilla extract and orange zest. If there are lumps, strain it with a sieve and then pour into the pan lined with banana leaves.
Pour 1 cup of water into the inner pot and set the trivet, placing the nian gao on top. Cover with aluminum foil and close the lid. Pressure release valve to seal and press pressure cooker, high pressure. I recommend using aluminum or stainless steel pan as they conduct heat better. Set the timer to 60 minutes and then wait 5 minutes to release pressure.
The cake will still seem very soft. If you use a chopstick to poke the middle of the cake, nothing should stick to the chopstick. If there is, the cake is not cooked through yet
Let it cool down completely and then wrap with aluminum foil. Let it sit at room temperature for at least 24 hours before unmoulding or attempting to cut. They will get slightly firmer. They can be kept at room temperature for up to 1 week if it's not humid. They can be refrigerated for up to 6 months.
Try some of these lucky foods to bring health, wealth, and prosperity all year long:
Whether you're celebrating with loved ones or having a cozy night in, enjoy your time together! What are some of your favorite Chinese New Year recipes? Share them with the ones you love on FamilyApp!