Chinese New Year is packed full of traditions. From the giving and receiving of red packets to spring cleaning, it can get rather overwhelming to keep up with. Here are 5 New Year food traditions and the meanings behind them!
1. Giving oranges
Oranges are a well-known symbol of good luck for the similarity between the Chinese words for tangerine and gold. Oranges bright colour is associated with good fortune, happiness and abundance. If the leaves and stem are still attached to the fruit, it symbolises fertility.
Noodles are a staple to the Chinese community more than ever during this time of year. When noodles are served during Chinese New Year, they shouldn’t be cut or broken. This is because long strands of noodles represent long life.
Chicken is a common sight on dining tables during Chinese New Year as it represents togetherness and rebirth. To make sure this symbolism is complete, the chicken is boiled or steamed together with it’s head and feet.
It is traditional to gather the entire family together to make dumplings the day before Chinese New Year and if you’re planning on carrying this Chinese New Year tradition to its end, conceal a coin in one of the dumplings during preparation. If the person who finds it doesn’t chip a tooth, he’s said to have an incredibly lucky year ahead.
Seeds are always served on a tray to visitors during Chinese New Year celebrations because they symbolise the harvest, abundance and fertility. They represent the potential for good things in the future and are regarded as the embodiment of hope for families. Many seed-rich fruits are also used as ingredients in Chinese New Year dishes as well as decoration.