Archives for posts with tag: tradition

It’s that time of year again – Dragonboat festival, or Duanwu festival (端午節) where we eat Chinese tamales or sticky rice dumpling or zongzi (粽子). Yesterday, we trekked on to Mr. Piggy’s grandma’s house to learn how to make them. Took the boys with me as they learn from the guru on how to wrap the rice and ingredients using bamboo leaves.

We got to take some home and enjoyed it for dinner tonight.

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Today, celebrating Dragon Boat Festival and eating the zongzi remain as an important tradition among the Chinese. Wrapping the ingredients is relatively easy, except for the time commitment to prepare and cook it afterwards. Making the zongzi as well as the ingredients in it varied considerably in different regions.

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Our annual pancreatic awareness walk was today. This year our group was much smaller with just the 3 of us and my younger niece and nephew. One of my sisters took Ah Lo and her family to a basketball game in Santa Cruz. It was a beautiful day for the walk, in memory of my dearest dad. IMG_3442IMG_3401EDIT

Yesterday was the 15th day of the CNY celebration, or known as lantern festival (元宵). Tangyuan is a traditional dessert people eat as it symbolizes family togetherness. They come with various stuffings, but I made the two that are more popular (peanut coconut and black sesame):

IMG_1933Of course, it’s cuter if they come in the shape of the dog (since this is year of the dog)! I made two different characters to differentiate the fillings.IMG_E1896

 

Here are the ones I made for the year of the rooster.

Big feast with ma familia today celebrating Year of the Dog. I spent all day today in the kitchen cooking, dicing, plating. I started out with easy pace in the morning and then got nervous when I realized I have a whole bunch of stuff to do!

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I made 8 dishes and my sisters made soup, brought fried rice, salt and pepper fish and duck.

We started Prosperity Toss (撈起- or Lo Hey) tradition last year. Since this is the year of the dog, I made the dog design with spiralized zucchini, Japanese daikon, carrots with wood ear (dog’s ears), red bell peppers, smoked salmon and fried wonton skins.

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Today is also the day we pass out red envelopes to the kids.

Today is Chinese New Year! Made nian gao (年糕) for my mom this year. This sweet treat is always a welcome sight around this time of year. Didn’t realize Dai Bee loves these too. I guess I have to make another batch sometime soon.

Wish everyone a healthy and prosperous year! 新年新開始,新希望。祝願大家一切順心如意。IMG_E1459

My non-traditional CNY red envelopes this year – Year of the Dog! These require much more work than the ones I did last year. Believe it or not, I started last November. How do I have so much time you ask? When you sit around waiting for music lessons, basketball practices, or when you watch TV, etc, you’ll notice you have plenty of time…IMG_1434IMG_E1488

Mr. Piggy is celebrating Christmas with his family today, unfortunately, the two old gramps couldn’t make it. Neither can I.  Since they can’t be join the rest of the family for Christmas, I brought Christmas to them. I made some pasta (per her request) and some tomato soup with puff pastry (something different). Normally on Christmas morning, we take time to visit seniors (normally who live by themselves). The tradition hasn’t changed this year, except I happen to visit someone we know this year! To me, this is what Christmas is all about.

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Second year in a row we stop by a senior home for the boys to play some Christmas music for them. We have another one next week. They have been practicing Carol of the Bells and did a wonderful job. Wished I had their gift…IMG_0953-1

Keeping up with traditions, we’re putting up the Christmas tree right after Thanksgiving! This tradition has passed on to the boys now. They recruited their cousins to come help since this may take a few hours. “It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas…” was playing on the radio, the perfect song for this activity!

Another day in the kitchen today, making a few dishes – this time for my side of the family.  As usual, we had a potluck, and everyone brought some delicious homemade food. This will probably the last time we’re ordering the turkey from KFC, folks are not too thrill about it. Anyway, here’s to another year of good health and great food!IMG_3436