Celebrating Chinese New Year: 新年快乐!

15
SPONSORED LINKS END OF SPONSORED LINKS

新年快乐!

Today is Chinese New Year, and our multicultural house is celebrating the beginning of spring (not quite there yet in Canada!) and the beginning of the year of the Snake.

Mark and I dressed in red for the day, and we hung a 福 (the Chinese characters for “good luck”) upside down at the front door. We are watching Beijing TV on the computer and Feng really wishes he could find a few firecrackers to celebrate properly—but no such luck in Canada.

Welcome to our Canadian-Chinese-French household where traditions and customs from all over the world are celebrated!

Mark was born in the year of the Dragon that is coming to a close today. I didn’t exactly plan it but this sign is considered very auspicious in China and my in-laws were quite happy to have a “baby dragon”. Feng is a tiger, another great sign, and I am… a pig. Yep. Guess my French parents didn’t check the Chinese horoscope before deciding to have their first child!

Wherever we are in the world, we’ve always celebrated Chinese New Year one way or another, including making dumplings in hostels a couple of times or heading to the nearest Chinese restaurant.

Today, our main task was to “包饺子”, i.e. make the traditional chive and celery dumplings. We took turn putting the homemade filling (chive, celery, meat and spices) in the little wrapping squares and had dinner with my in-laws.

Happy Chinese New Year to all of you!

You can see the full Winter – Ottawa on Flickr.

Mark, the "Good Luck"  Character and I

Mark, the “Good Luck” Character and I

Mark Says "Happy New Year"!

Mark Says “Happy New Year”!

Minced Celery and Cabbage

Minced Celery and Cabbage

The Secret Ingredient: Jiucai

The Secret Ingredient: Jiucai

The Secret Ingredient: Jiucai

The Secret Ingredient: Jiucai

The Secret Ingredient: Jiucai

The Secret Ingredient: Jiucai

Some Chive's Gona Get Hurt...

Some Chive’s Gona Get Hurt…

My Mother In-Law, The Expert

My Mother In-Law, The Expert

My Mother In-Law, The Expert

My Mother In-Law, The Expert

Making Dumplings

Making Dumplings

Making Dumplings

Making Dumplings

Making Dumplings

Making Dumplings

Making Dumplings

Making Dumplings

Making Dumplings

Making Dumplings

Making Dumplings

Making Dumplings

Boiled and Ready to Eat!

Boiled and Ready to Eat!

Happy Chinese New Year!

Happy Chinese New Year!

Making the Dumplings

Making the Dumplings

The Filing and the Chives

The Filing and the Chives

Share.

About Author

French woman in English Canada. World citizen, new mom, traveler, translator, writer and photographer. Looking for comrades to start a new revolution.

15 Comments

  1. Ah, Chinese New Year. I celebrated it once, when my Chinese professor in Buffalo invited me to her home one winter. Come to think of it, I don’t remember what year it was, but there definitely were plenty of dumplings made in her dining table!

    • Dumplings are mostly a Northern China custom actually. Not sure what Southern eat come to think of it… Bah, you can never go wrong with Chinese food!

    • Fluent, not anymore. My English is way better than my Mandarin! But I did study Mandarin for about 12 years and ave a degree in Chinese language and civilization 😉

  2. Happy Chinese New Year to you and your family Juliette.

    I would like to try to make these dumplings at home. Do you have a step-by-step recipe/instructions as per your Mother-in-Law’s dumplings? Photographs are not enough.

    As Chives are not widely available fresh at this time of the year in the UK can I use ‘Spring Onions’ (may be called ‘Scallions’ in the US/Canada) with grated Garlic?

    What fillings do you recommend for a vegetarian or a pescatarian?

    As if you already do not have enough to deal with!

    Best wishes

    • I’ll be happy to give you “our” recipe!

      The filling is:

      – Groun meat
      – Chives (scallions will work great too, or minced celery)
      – Garlic

      Mix everything in a big bowl and voilà!

      Now you need the bowl of filing, a bowl of water, the little square of dough (wonton wraps, available at any Chinese supermarket/store). Put the filing at the centre of the square, dipping a finger into the water to wet the edges o the wrap and fold. Each person has a different way of folding the dumplings, really, there isn’t a perfect way to do it. Just make sure it’s tight because you don’t want them to open in the water.

      You can either boil the dumpling (like you would do with Italian raviolis) or fry them. Boil them for about 15 minutes to make sure the filing is well cooked.

      You can also make sweet dumpling by using sugar for the filing. Red bean paste is also delicious and very popular.

      The dipping sauce is traditionally a mix of garlic (minced), soy sauce, vinegar and sesame oil.

      Hope that helps! If anything isn’t clear, let me know, I’ll be happy to help 🙂

      • Merci beaucoup!

        I shall be trying these and experimenting with various fillings.

        I do not have a Chinese store nearby so will also attempt to make the dough/wonton wraps from recipes I can find online.

  3. Pingback: March & Five Months… In Numbers! | Correr Es Mi Destino

Leave A Reply