Chinese New Year Foods

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Chinese New Year

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Chinese New Year is a 15-day celebration that involves a good deal of eating. Many of the foods that people who are celebrating eat are traditional and having special meaning during these 15 days. Here are some of them, along with their significance:
  • tang yuan: a sweet rice and dumpling soup eaten in conjunction with the Lantern Festival, which takes place on the last day of the New Year celebrations;
  • nian gao: a sort of sticky pudding that resembles cake and is commonly called "Year Cake" because the those words sound similar to the Chinese pronunciation. Eating this food encourages one to do better in the year ahead.
  • fa gao: another sweet food that is literally translated into English as "Prosperity Cake"; those who eat this cake hope for more wealth (in money or in spirit) in the year ahead;
  • yu sheng: a tossed salad of raw fish served on the Seventh New Year's Day, which is traditionally everyone's birthday; this food also has the intended significance of looking toward better times in the year ahead
  • man tou: steamed wheat bread that also symbolizes wealth and good fortune
  • mandarin oranges: The Chinese word for this specific kind of oranges sounds like gold, again a symbol of wealth and good fortune;
  • uncut noodles: a symbol of longevity

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