Beauty. Fashion. Food. Travel. Lifestyle.

Thursday, January 30, 2014

10 Lucky Chinese New Year Foods

Hello A Very Sweet Blog friends! This is Chic 'n Cheap Living and I'm grateful that Kim has me over to share a few fun and favorite foods for the Chinese New Year holiday. I learned a lot as well while writing this piece and I hope that you can also appreciate the symbolism and treats for this celebration! What are the memories that you associate with the holidays? For many ethnically Chinese people celebrating Chinese or Lunar new year, it is the mix of voices old and new at a party, the clink of glasses (or mahjong tiles!), and the delicious smells of traditional New Year foods. There are similar traditions in Taiwan, Malaysia, Indonesia, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and of course China. Since many people can no longer receive red packets full of money (only for the unmarried adults or kids!), their favorite parts of the holidays are gathering with family and friends and eating auspicious foods.

Chinese New Year decor by Chic n Cheap Living

There are several types of food that are considered especially lucky to consume during Chinese New Year and they all have different meanings. Here are ten of the most common Chinese New Year foods:  

1. Tangerines, Oranges, and Mandarins Oranges (or orange colored fruit in this case!) are readily given and received during Chinese New Year because "orange" sounds similar to "gold" while "tangerine" sounds like "lucky" in Chinese. My husband loves mandarins and we go through a box a week (so it's a good thing supermarkets are selling more varieties at this time of year!)

 Chinese New Year mandarins by Chic n Cheap Living  

2. Whole Fish. Fish is cooked and eaten on New Year's Eve because its leftovers signal abundance or surplus in the New Year.
  
3. Dumplings (my favorite, any time!). Did you know that dumplings are similar in form so silver ingot pieces of money? The preparation also symbolizes packaging luck! It is commonly eaten in Northern China.

4. Tray of togetherness. This appetizer dish consists of eight different snacks. Similar pronunciations are again key here since "eight" sounds similar to "prosper". Typical snacks may include preserved kumquats for prosperity, longans for sons, and red melon seeds for happiness.

 Chinese New Year snacks by Chic n Cheap Living  

5. Noodles. Long, uncut noodles represent long life and noodles may also be eaten on other occasions like birthdays.
  
6. Nian gao. Nian gao, which is literally year cake is popular because "gao" sounds like heights - achieve new heights in the new year!  

7. Sweets. Sweet treats also symbolize a sweet life. Bring on the pineapple cakes, red bean mochi and other goodies!

Chinese New Year love letter snacks by Chic n Cheap Living  

8. Long leafy greens. Long leafy greens indicate a wish for a long life for your parents.  

9. Bakkwa. This popular Southeast Asian snack is essential a pork or beef jerky. It is a popular treat to gift for those without a sweet tooth.  

10. Raw fish salad or yu sheng. Yu Sheng is also popular in Southeast Asia and eating it is supposed to bring good luck in the new year.

References from here and here. Pictures by Chic 'n Cheap Living taken in Singapore

I would like to thank Chic N Cheap Living for this yummy and beautiful post! I learned so much! Thank You!
I recently stocked up on oranges & tangerines. I'm cooking fish & greens. I have sweets! So I'm partly ready! HaHaHa
I'm not Asian, but it's fun participating in and trying new things :) Look for a sweet post tomorrow!
SHARE:

55 comments

  1. I knew about some of these foods but not all, such a great list! :)

    Hope you have lots of luck as a result of eating some of this yummy food you have already Kim! :)

    Away From Blue

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thanks for sharing, Kim! I keep making lists. :)
    x

    ReplyDelete
  3. Hehe so funny that yesterday I decided to cook Chinese noodles ( sort of). And I've also stocked on mandarins this week. Hopefully I'll have plenty of luck this year :)

    Very interesting post, as always! I have one question though. All these traditions are general for the CNY but do you also have special traditions depending on which year is beginning, as for example this being the year of the horse? ... maybe it's a really stupid question hehe

    ReplyDelete
  4. Hahaha...Kim, you are so ready. And thanks for sharing, ChicnCheap:) The fish is definitely such an important dish in my family during special occasions.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Thank you for sharing this with us. Lovely and informative post.
    Dusana :-)

    www.letnedni.com

    ReplyDelete
  6. So interesting post, I love Chinese food and they are my favorite! Hope you have lots of luck as a result of eating some of this delicious food you have honey! kisses <3

    ReplyDelete
  7. Thanks for having me over Kim! We have a box of mandarins now and are happily munching on them. Enjoy your treats! I will probably attempt to make dumplings this weekend and it should be fun!

    xoxo,
    Chic 'n Cheap Living

    ReplyDelete
  8. So interesting to discover more about these kinds of food, actually I like Chinese kitchen so they must be very good. Great guest post!:)
    Kisses dear Kim! xo

    ReplyDelete
  9. Oh Kim! Love you,love chinese food so much. Love all these you have listed. Oh am so addicted to chinese special friend rice,It's taking too much of my money ordering it,I hope you teach me how to cook itand chilli oil too. I need a reciepe please...please..please...
    Kisses..

    ReplyDelete
  10. I am a noodles addict ! Thanks for sharing!

    ReplyDelete
  11. Love your post <3

    ReplyDelete
  12. I know quite nothing about chinese new year so it's really ineresting learning more from your blog!
    bonjourchiara.blogspot.com
    Facebook Page Bonjourchiara
    Bloglovin Bonjourchiara

    ReplyDelete
  13. I love these posts, but you're making me hungry LOL :)

    ReplyDelete
  14. I will have all these :))) This was marvellous, I enjoyed reading about all of this. I love all of these foods and eat them regularly, so cool to read the purposes behind them for the new year!! Superb doll, well done!! Xxx

    ReplyDelete
  15. I love mandarin oranges! That is so neat that they're associated with gold/luck. Time to eat more, hehe!

    -Sharon
    The Tiny Heart

    ReplyDelete
  16. Oh yes dumplings are my favorite too. There was a wonderful dumpling shop here in NY that just went out of business, such a shame I was pissed.

    Allie of ALLIE NYC
    allienyc.com

    ReplyDelete
  17. Going out to dinner with my parents tonight and we'll probably eat a lot of this for good luck in the new year! :)

    xo, Yi-chia
    Always Maylee

    ReplyDelete
  18. Long leafy greens? I didn't know that! So picking some up tonight.

    ReplyDelete
  19. Lovely post!
    Very interesting too. c:

    <3
    Harlynn
    www.mindyourmadness.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  20. its so nice about knowing other traditions!

    --> Invitation to my International Rosewholesale Giveaway!
    I hope you will partecipate!!

    ReplyDelete
  21. I love chinese food! I like this list so much I'll try what I don't know!
    Kisses Alita
    www.paintyourdays.eu

    ReplyDelete
  22. I've only just tried dumplings, my housemates got some from the Chinese the other week and they were lovely.

    Corinne x
    www.skinnedcartree.com

    ReplyDelete
  23. I loved reading this! My friends who are also celebrating Chinese New Year said they'd have fish and lots of noodles! Great Post and Happy New Year for tomorrow!
    xoxo,

    BerryBloomXO.blogspot.co.uk 

    ReplyDelete
  24. I love this time of the year. It's so festive and I love re-visiting traditions. =)
    xo,
    nancy

    http://www.adoretoadorn.com

    ReplyDelete
  25. Yes! Food post! lol. I have been obsessed with clementines lately, and we have been going through a box per week! My friend is bringing over dumplings this weekend, so I think we have some good luck headed our way. Well, at least good food.

    ReplyDelete
  26. i absolutely love foods like this that bring good luck in the new year -- i wish we had something like this in the states!
    xx Corinne
    cateyesandthighhighs.com

    ReplyDelete
  27. How fun! I only knew about the oranges.

    always, koru kate

    ReplyDelete
  28. Oh I'm loving all your posts lately because, I have a bit of Chinese's, These foods are so familiar to me, I grew up with all those lucky foods, Yummy:).

    xo

    http://www.attraction2fashion.com

    ReplyDelete
  29. Everything sounds so delicious, I'll have all of these please! Haha. Thanks for a great guest post! xxx Annie

    ReplyDelete
  30. Celebrating the Lunar New Year here Vietnamese style and I did not know the meaning behind these things. We also have many different foods. I agree with the tangerines, though. :)

    ~ Christine from Invisible Blush

    ReplyDelete
  31. So happy to see a CnC guest post! Well done hun. It was so exciting to learn more about the lucky foods, i need to incorporate some in my diet. noodles and leafy greens are always a main feature for me. The tray of togetherness, love that!

    ReplyDelete
  32. I love discover yours traditions! Great post sweety!

    Viky --- MySecretFashionPoison

    ReplyDelete
  33. Happy CNY!!! and i love this post! holidays are all about the food and chinese new year food is so awesome. i especially love leen-go (or nian-goh as you say).
    Jenn
    A Beautiful Zen

    ReplyDelete
  34. Chinese New Year has to be one of the most delicious times of the year! Fantastic job my dears! I have so many mandarins and oranges in the fridge now :)

    Rowena @ rolala loves

    ReplyDelete
  35. Gorgeous pics! I had my leafy greens today via spinach in my green smoothie. :) Joy & hugs, T. http://tickledpinkwoman.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  36. Hey Kim, I eat most of these food especially dumplings. They are so good! We're going out tonight for our reunion dinner so that means MORE FOOD! Happy Chinese New Year!

    xo Jo

    http://www.whiterosesandcoffee.com

    ReplyDelete
  37. These are mostly my favourite food. Wishing you a healthy and prosperous New Year.

    ReplyDelete
  38. Makes me hungry~ ^^
    http://www.princesskonakei.com/l

    ReplyDelete
  39. Another wonderful and interesting post - I'm a sucker for all things food related! Although I'm not Chinese, I'll definitely have some noodles to celebrate the lunar new year this year :)
    xox,
    Cee

    ReplyDelete
  40. Very interesting post. I love the Love Letter Cookies, such a cute name.

    LittlePinkRainBoots.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  41. I love oranges and tangerines and DUMPLINGS! I'd be happy to devour any of these lucky foods.

    I love CNC's blog too!

    Chic on the Cheap

    ReplyDelete
  42. Great post ladies - save a pineapple cake for me!

    ReplyDelete
  43. I knew very little about them! Very informative Post :)

    http://www.coralswithblues.com/

    ReplyDelete
  44. Oooh! Love Letters! Those are so tasty...and too addictive!

    ReplyDelete
  45. so interesting...i better eat noodles...haha!! and i'm sure i'll put lots of oranges in my sangria!

    ReplyDelete
  46. It's allwayss great to get to know other traditions :)
    I want to wish you a happy new year :)

    Hugs
    Svetlana from Lavender Star

    ReplyDelete
  47. Ooooh we definitely had lots of dumplings on Chinese Year's Eve and Chinese New Year's day! Yummmmm!!!!

    ReplyDelete
  48. happy chinese new year...belated but still :)

    ReplyDelete
  49. Happy Chinese New Year my dear! Love this post...and most of those yummy food too. Just had my tangerine and sticky nian gao yesterday...also sweet red bean soup. Wish they sold bakkwa in London though! Have a brilliant year of the horse...filled with good health and happiness!
    May x
    www.walkinginmay.com

    ReplyDelete
  50. Everything sounds great and the fun part was playing fire crackers before midnight. In fact, many places banned the sales of fire crackers but we can still find them in Malaysia. In fact, I learned something new through reading this post. I didn't know the fact about dumplings. Now I know =) If you had a chance, you got to try the pork jerky (Bakkwa). It's delicious and also the Love Letters. My sister brought some for her American colleagues to try. Lucky them!

    ReplyDelete
  51. Happy Chinese New Year Kim! I love oranges and dumplings too! I hope we can play mahjong while eating those someday. Hihi.
    (^^,)

    ReplyDelete
Blogger Template Created by pipdig