Why Do Chinese People Eat Rice Cakes At New Years?

  • New Year Sweet Rice Cake (红糖年糕), or nian gao, is a welcome sight during Chinese New Year and a must-have dish. Nian gao 年糕(高) symbolizes progress, advancement, and growth.Nian Gao is also a popular gift to give when visiting family and friends during the holiday.

What does the Chinese New Year cake mean?

  • The Chinese word 粘 (nián), meaning “sticky”, is identical in sound to 年, meaning “year”. The word 糕 (gāo), meaning “cake” is identical in sound to 高, meaning “high or tall”. For old people, nian gao expresses the wish for longevity. For young people, it expresses the wish for promotion and high income.

What do Chinese people eat on Chinese New Year?

Chinese New Year Food: Top 7 Lucky Foods and Symbolism

  • Fish — an Increase in Prosperity.
  • Chinese Dumplings — Wealth.
  • Spring Rolls — Wealth.
  • Glutinous Rice Cake — a Higher Income or Position.
  • Sweet Rice Balls — Family Togetherness.
  • Longevity Noodles — Happiness and Longevity.
  • Good Fortune Fruit — Fullness and Wealth.
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What can you not eat during Chinese New Year?

Don’t eat porridge and meat for breakfast. Don’t eat porridge. Porridge should not be eaten, because it is considered that only poor people have porridge for breakfast, and people don’t want to start the year “poor” as this is a bad omen.

What do you eat for good luck on Chinese New Year?

Oranges, kumquats, tangerines and pomelos are common Chinese New Year gifts because they’re believed to bring good luck and happiness. The Chinese words for “orange” and “tangerine” closely resemble the words for “ luck ” and “wealth.” The gold color of these fruits also symbolizes prosperity.

What is Chinese New Year Cake?

Nian gao (年糕; also niangao; nin4 gou1 in Cantonese), sometimes translated as year cake or New Year cake or Chinese New Year’s cake, is a food prepared from glutinous rice flour and consumed in Chinese cuisine. It is also simply known as “rice cake “.

Why do we eat Chinese food on New Year’s Eve?

Everybody loves Chinese on New Year’s Eve. The appeal of Chinese food, said George Chu, is that it’s so versatile – eat it hot, cold, it lasts for days. “Anything goes,” Chu said. The celebration at the Donovan house will be a feast of chicken lo mein, Crab Rangoon, pork fried rice and any kind of dumpling.

Why do Chinese people drink hot water?

Under the precepts of Chinese medicine, balance is key, and hot or warm water is considered essential to balance cold and humidity; in addition, it is believed to promote blood circulation and toxin release.

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Can you wash dishes on Chinese New Year?

Cleaning of any kind on the first day is strictly forbidden. Don’t even wash the dishes. You cleaned your home to rid it of any bad luck before the New Year — now you want to be sure not to wipe, sweep or wash away any of the good luck that arrived at the stroke of midnight.

Why the Chinese New Year is celebrated?

Chinese New Year is the most important holiday in China. Tied to the Chinese lunar calendar, the holiday was traditionally a time to honor household and heavenly deities as well as ancestors. It was also a time to bring family together for feasting.

What do you put in red envelopes for Chinese New Year?

At Lunar New Year, it’s tradition to give the gift of a bright, beautiful red envelope (known as 紅包, hóngbāo) to your friends and family. But not just any old envelope. These are filled with money – and symbolize good wishes and luck for the new year ahead.

What is another name for Chinese New Year?

Chinese New Year, also called Lunar New Year, annual 15-day festival in China and Chinese communities around the world that begins with the new moon that occurs sometime between January 21 and February 20 according to Western calendars. Festivities last until the following full moon.

How do Chinese prepare for New Year?

People clean their houses before Chinese New Year. Beginning on the 23rd day of the 12th lunar month Chinese people carry out a thorough ‘winter-cleaning’ of their houses. This is called “sweeping away the dust”, and represents a wish to put away old things, bid farewell to the old year, and welcome in the New Year.

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How long is the Chinese New Year 2021?

Chinese New Year 2021 will be observed on Friday, February 12th, 2021. Mostly, the Chinese New Year festival period lasts for 16 days, starting from Chinese New Year’s eve to the Lantern Festival. In 2021, the Chinese New Year festival will begin on February 11th and go on till February 26th.

How do you eat GAO?

Despite the paucity of ingredients, a nian gao evokes so many wonderful things: almonds, dates, and vanilla; caramel, toffee, and cream. You eat it hot, when it is at its chewy best, and its texture marvelous: tacky and soft, with brown sugary strings that pull from your mouth when you take a bite.

What does nian gao represent?

Nian gao, or ‘year cake’, is a sticky rice cake which represents prosperity; the words ‘ nian gao ‘ sounds like ‘getting higher year on year’, and this symbolises raising oneself taller in each coming year.

Is nian gao healthy?

While it isn’t every day that you eat nian gao, it would be wise to limit your intake. Mandarin oranges are high in nutrients, vitamins and fibre, as well as low in calories. This makes it great as a healthy snack!

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