Chinese New Year, also known as the Lunar New Year or Spring Festival, is one of the major and important holidays for the Chinese. Their celebration is different from our usual New Year celebration as they hold a lot of traditional beliefs during this event. From the lucky foods to eat to the taboos that could bring bad luck, these surely add color and life to this wonderful event.
If you’re a first-timer and are planning to experience Lunar New Year, here are the basics you must know before you jump into the celebration.
Lucky Foods to Eat during Chinese New Year
The Chinese are particular in serving foods they believe to bring good luck and fortune.
- Tangerines and Oranges – Chinese people believe that eating these succulent fruits will surely bring wealth good luck to your upcoming year. It’s because the Chinese word for tangerine and luck sounds similar. The Chinese word for gold and orange also sounds the same.
- Sweet rice cake – Commonly called ‘niangao’, this sweet and sticky dessert is known to bring good luck by taking you to new heights or climb the social ladder.
- Pineapple tarts – Pineapple is known as ‘ong-lai’ in Chinese which means ‘fortune cones’. The Chinese encourage eating lots of sweet desserts during this festival for a sweeter life to come. There are lots of yummy pineapple tarts Singapore that will make you crave for more.
- Long noodles – The Chinese believe that these noodles resemble long life to those who eats them.
- Fish – Serving whole fish symbolizes good beginnings and endings. It doesn’t matter how it is cooked.
- Dumplings – The Chinese believe that eating more dumplings during the festivity will give you more money in the upcoming year. For dumpling lovers, now is the time to indulge.
Taboos during Chinese New Year
Aside from serving foods that bring good luck, there are also activities that you should avoid during this season.
- Avoid eating porridge – Porridge is considered to be food for the poor so if you eat this during New Year, it’s like you’re starting the year poor.
- Avoid sweeping and taking out the garbage – It symbolizes sweeping fortune and wealth out of your life.
- Avoid washing your hair and clothes – Similar to sweeping, washing hair and clothes is also associated with washing away wealth.
- Never let the rice jar be empty – It is associated with bad omen such as poverty.
The Lunar New Year is a wonderful event you should try to experience even if you’re not Chinese. It is best to learn some basics before jumping in so can truly enjoy it to the fullest.