Chinese New Year

Chinese New Year Food

As at all Chinese festivals, food plays an important role throughout the Chinese New Year Festival, and dinners tend to be especially lavish. Many of the dishes made at this time are served because they are regarded as symbols of good luck. For instance, fish (yu) represent "having enough to spare," garlic chives (chiu-tsai) stand for "everlasting," turnips (tsai tou) mean "good omens," and fish balls (yu-wan) and meat balls (jou-wan) represent "reunion." Auspicious refreshments are also prepared at this time, such as glutinous rice flour pudding (nien-kao), which is said to make people "advance toward higher positions and prosperity step by step." People from northern China usually have dumplings (shui-chiao) too, which look like shoe-shaped gold and are supposed to help those who eat them to amass fortunes and wealth.