SHANGHAI SPRING ROLLS – signify wealth because the deep fried rolls resemble gold bullions.
CLAMS – look like old Chinese silver ingots when they open, so they also signify prosperity. Eat them steamed or stir fried with black bean sauce.
WHOLE STEAMED FISH – symbolize abundance. The Chinese word for Fish (“YU”) is a homonym for abundance. This must be prepared as a whole fish, with head and tail intact. My favorite is live killed fish steamed the Cantonese way.
ORANGES – signify good luck and are frequently given as gifts during the Chinese New Year. Clementines and tangerines are in season now, so serve them as a refreshing, low calorie dessert.
PEANUTS – symbolize long life. Serve dry roasted peanuts with cocktails before the meal or cook them into a dish like KUNG PAO CHICKEN (Szchuan chicken with peanuts).
NIAN GAO – (sticky rice cakes) represent the sticking together of family and a good year to come. (Picture Left - Cantonese Style New Year Nian Gao).
Copyright© 2009 by Helen Chen. All rights reserved.
Helen's Asian Kitchen is not affiliated with Joyce Chen Products.