Happy Year of the Sheep! It’s been nearly 2 years since my last Chinese New Year post, and I’ve been missing how blogging used to be back when I was in high school and I would always be so excited to share my day and daily events. Of course, I still try to do that as much as I can, but it’s a lot more difficult in college with classes, work and all the time I spend studying.
Anyways, this weekend I got the chance to head home this past weekend to be with relatives as I mentioned here, and this is actually the first time we’ve been able to celebrate Lunar New Year with our relatives since they all live in Taiwan. And let me just say that it was AMAAAAZING! SO much good food that my aunt cooked for all of us-I mean, it was basically a feast. There’s nothing better than a home-cooked feast.
All of us helping out in the kitchen! (Well, most of us…minus two because they’re busy keeping Twinkie company haha!)
Twinkie assuming his regular position in the kitchen. Who really needs a vacuum or disposal when you can just feed Twinkie leftover vegetables? Bonus: he’s a pro at catching falling food.
One of my favorite, FAVORITE side dishes of all time. My grandma always makes this for me without fail every year I go back to Taiwan. My aunt also knows it’s my favorite. My dad also knows how much I love this and prepared some over the weekend just so I could take back with me in college. If you’re ever trying to make me love you, you know what to make me *wink wink*.
One of the best parts of Chinese New Year is this delicious dessert that is always eagerly awaiting us at the Asian market around this time of the year. 年糕 (“nian gao“), is a sticky and sweet rice cake that can be fried or steamed- tastes similar to mochi! Oh, and if you don’t already know, there are certain foods that are always eaten during Chinese New Year, this being one of them because it symbolizes the phrase 步步高升, signifying greater success and prosperity within each coming year.
I’m not a big fan of squid, but this squid? YUM. Super soft and paired with a simple mix of carrots and celery.
For soup, we have beef tendon ball soup with some 白蘿蔔, or what you might know as Daikon.
Peppered beef with onions, green onion, and ginger. Green onion, or 洋蔥 (“yang cong”) sounds a lot like intelligence, 聰明 (“cong ming”)-well, mainly referring to the word “cong”. I don’t know if this is a specific dish eaten during Lunar New Year, but I just remember my Chinese school teacher always telling us to eat our onions so we would become smarter. What a clever way to get your kids to eat your vegetables, right?
Simple, but it’s one of my grandma’s dishes that she cooks-curried cauliflower. It’s almost as if all our relatives are here-through the dishes!
Fish, a must during Chinese New Year. The Chinese word for fish is 魚(“yu”), which sounds like the word for surplus and also represents the phrase 年年有餘, meaning “may you have surplus year after year” and never experience any shortages in terms of finance, health, friendships, etc.
We also had some bok choy, roast pork chops and taro, plenty of pineapple, grapes and oranges, and a delicious taro and sweet potato tapioca ball dessert seen here that my aunt made from scratch. Alright, this is enough feasting for my eyes, it’s time for all of us to feast with our stomachs.
Happy Chinese New Year from us to you! So incredibly grateful to share this experience with my family.
Wishing you lots of love, fortune and prosperity this year!