Famous festive food
Chinese New Year represents new beginnings. Richly flavored cakes, called nin go , are extremely popular during this time because to the Chinese they represent success. Nin in Cantonese means "year" and go , "high", so to eat these foretells a successful year ahead.
Ducks represent fidelity in Chinese culture. The famous Peking duck is often served in wedding banquets or New Year banquets.
At a Chinese wedding, chicken's feet (sometimes referred to as phoenix feet) are often served with dragon foods such as lobster.
Pomelos , the large ancestor of the grapefruit signifies abundance, as the Chinese word for pomelo sounds like the word for "to have."
Eggs hold a special symbolic significance in many cultures, and China is no exception. The Chinese believe eggs symbolize fertility. After a baby is born, parents may hold a " red egg and ginger party" where they pass out hard boiled eggs to announce the birth.
Noodles are a symbol of longevity in Chinese culture. They are as much a part of a Chinese birthday celebration as a birthday cake with lit candles is in many countries. Since noodles do symbolize long life, it is considered very unlucky to cut up a strand.
Fish also has symbolic significance because the Chinese word for fish, yu , sounds like the word for riches or abundance, and it is believed that eating fish will help your wishes come true in the year to come.
Chinese garlic chives symbolize eternity
Cone-shaped winter bamboo shoots are a symbol of wealth.
The wedding banquet
Food plays a significant role because the wedding banquet is held in high esteem in Chinese culture. It is more often than not a sit-down affair that offers as many as twelve courses, with musical accompaniment. The elaborate menu includes any number of Chinese delicacies, including such items as lobster, shark fin soup, abalone, roast pig, fried rice and/or noodles, fancy desserts, fresh fruit and really top shelf cognac.
A traditional example:
- Barbecued Whole Suckling Pig (the bride is a virgin)
- Sauteed Prawns and Scallops in XO Sauce (live happily ever after)
- Braised Whole Conpoy with Garlic and Sea Moss (family unity)
- Deep Fried Crab Claws Coated with Minced Cuttlefish (no specific meaning)
- Double Boiled Superior Shark's Fin Soup with Chicken (wealthy at all times)
- Braised Sliced Australian Abalone with Mushrooms and Vegetables (wealthy at all times)
- Steamed Fresh Garoupa (prosperity)
- Roasted Crispy Chicken (success)
- Fried Rice with Assorted Meat Wrapped in Lotus Leaves (good things coming at you)
- Braised E-Fu Noodles with Shredded Mushroom and Chive (long life)
- Sweetened Red Bean Cream with Lotus Seeds and Lily Bulbs (bear many children)
- Chinese Petit Fours (happy family)
- Fresh Fruit Platter (no specific meaning)
Barbecued Whole Suckling Pig
Double Boiled Superior Shark's Fin Soup with Chicken
Roasted Crispy Chicken
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