Categories ArchivesFestivals

Traditional Chinese New Year Dish: Black Moss with Dried Oysters

What else do we have as Chinese New Year Dish? Black Moss? Hair Vegetable? Get Rich? As mentioned in our previous blog post, homonyms are prevalent in Cantonese, especially with Chinese New Year festive greetings and with names of food served during this time of the year. This evening, we had one such dish — 發財好事 — literally translates as Be Prosperous, Great Things. Or more generally, it means great fortune. The dish features two main ingredients. One is 髮菜, literally translated as “hair vegetable” is black moss, but it is phonetically pronounced like 發財 (Be Prosperous). Another ingredient is 蠔豉, or dried oysters, which sounds like 好事, or great things. It is believed that having this dish will bring lots ...

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Tuen Neen Fan (Chinese Year-End Dinner)

Chinese New Year is the most important time of the year for Chinese. Not only does it signify the beginning of a new year, it is also the season for traditional food indulgence with the your loved ones. Before we welcome the new year, Chinese families always gather today on New Year’s Eve to feast and reunite at a Chinese Year-End Dinner before another year of hard work kick starts. So what do we eat for this Chinese Year-End dinner? The beauty of Chinese culture is the remarkable styles of regional cuisine which vary across the country.  Every region has its own customs to celebrate Chinese New Year. Situated in the Guangdong province, Cantonese food which often features steamed fresh ...

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Happy Year of the Horse!

Happy Year of the Horse!  Hong Kong Foodie wishes everyone a very healthy and prosperous year! Today is the first day of Chinese New Year. Have you visited any relatives or friends to send your well wishes? If so, perhaps you might have been greeted with lots of festive sayings, given (or asked for) some lai sees (red pockets with money) and served some steamed cakes? Word puns are common in Chinese.  Many of them were developed from the practice of greeting each other with festive wishes towards wealth and health during Chinese New Year. It is also the cultural root for giving out “Lai Sees” (red pockets with money). Lai Sees are blessings of fortune and prosperity. Traditionally, Lai Sees are given by married, older ...

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Yummy Winter Solstice 2013

Winter Solstice is an important Chinese festival. Some Chinese will tell you it is a bigger festival than Chinese New Year. When I lived in the US, I used to explain it to my friends as the Chinese Thanksgiving.  As with all Chinese festivals, Winter Solstice dinner also revolves around food and family. This year, some of the food my family picked is somewhat untraditional. No Chinese festival is celebrated without chicken. It is a bit like turkey is a must for Thanksgiving. Instead of the usual poached chicken or crispy chicken, this year, we had Szechuan Pepper Chicken. The chicken is marinated with lots of flavors. The pepper leaves on the side are crispy and fragrant. Next comes some perfectly ...

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Black Friday to Cyber Monday Sale

Hong Kong Foodie has just launched our annual sale event. 20% discount off! From Black Friday to Cyber Monday, including the Saturday and Sunday in between, you can purchase tickets to Hong Kong Foodie tours with a special discount. For four days, you can buy tickets to our Central & Sheung Wan Foodie Tour or our Sham Shui Po Foodie Tour at a special discount. Our tours are perfect excursions in Hong Kong. What else could be better than combining a great morning or afternoon of tasting different Hong Kong classic foods and drinks while strolling around different neighborhoods? Our walking tours on Hong Kong Island and in Kowloon provide an unique experience combining culinary tastings, history and culture. This year, you will also be able to ...

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Hong Kong Vegetarian Food on Chung Yeung Festival

Today is Chung Yeung Festival. Follow us on our adventure today, which includes a Hong Kong vegetarian meal at a Taoist temple. As with our family tradition, my parents and I, together with a gang of relatives (aunts, uncles and cousins galore) hiked up hills to pay respect to our ancestors. Back when I was a kid, we used to carry a whole suckling pig, chicken, our ancestors’ favorite drinks, together with many other offerings to be burnt, up the hill with us. A few things have have changed since then. We no longer carry a whole roast suckling pig with us but only a small takeaway box of roast meat. We still bring paper offerings to be burnt but ...

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Bye, Bye, Year of the Dragon!

Tonight is New Year’s Eve of the Year of the Dragon when families gather together for a Chinese New Year reunion dinner. As Foodies, we look forward to this scrumptious meal but the best part is the dessert, glutinous rice balls, tang yuan (湯圓). Many Chinese dishes have names with homophones that signify prosperity. In Chinese, glutinous rice balls sound like reunion. The round shape of the balls and the round bowls in which they are served also represent unity of the family. Glutinous rice balls often have peanut or sesame fillings. Tonight, we are having ones with peanut fillings. They are boiled and served in sugar water. Here’s to a healthy and prosperous Year of the Snake!

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Moon Cakes & Mid-Autumn Festival

An ancient harvest festival celebrated by the Chinese on the 15th day of the eighth month of the lunar calendar, the Mid-Autumn Festival is one of the most popular Chinese festivals. On this day, the moon is the fullest and roundest of the year. In our culture, the full moon symbolizes “tuan yuan” or reunion. As with many Chinese festivals, we gather together with our family on mid-Autumn festival and celebrate with delicious food such as moon cakes, sweet glutinous rice dumplings (tong yuan), star fruits, persimmon and pomelos. If you joined our Central & Sheung Wan Foodie Tour last week, you would have had the chance to try the most popular kind of Mid-Autumn Festival food — moon cake. ...

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Glutinous Rice Dumplings (Zong Zi) & Dragon Boat Races

Tuen Ng Festival (also known as Dragon Boat Festival) is on the fifth day of the fifth month of the Chinese lunar calendar. The Festival is to commemorate a well-known Chinese poet named Qu Yuan who lived over 2000 years ago. Disenchanted by the corruption during his era, Qu Yuan committed suicide by drowning himself in the Mi Luo River as a sign of protest against corruptive rulers.  Since Qu Yuan was a good swimmer, he even tied heavy weights to himself to make sure he wouldn’t float.  After the incident, in an attempt to preserve Qu Yuan’s body from being fish’s bait, inearby residents beat drums on boats with dragon heads to try to scare the fish away.  They ...

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