The Christmas decs might have been packed away, but the celebrations haven’t ended quite yet.
Saturday, January 25 will mark Chinese New Year, an occasion marked by more than 20% of the world’s population according to chinesenewyear.net.
Known for having a wealth of rich traditions and cultural ritual, celebrity chef and founder of School of Wok Jeremy Pang, gives us his rundown below on the absolute no no’s when it comes to celebrating Chinese New Year authentically:
– First one that sticks in my mind from my Mum, as a child, was “DON’T SHOWER”…. well, at least not on Chinese New Year’s Day. Apparently it washes off all your luck!
– Don’t clean your house (which is why we clean the day before, or deep clean just before CNY), as again – we will sweep away our luck.
– Chinese New Year is all about accruing good luck for the year ahead and this is why firecrackers and fireworks are set off at midnight, to ward off misfortune and bring in that good luck.
– Don’t give red packets unless you’re married! These red envelopes are packets of luck, usually filled with money… so if you’re single – you’re in a good place and should look forward to receiving lots of money on Chinese New Year and gaining wealth! As soon as you’re married, you have to then give red packets to all those younger than you who are single.
Jeremy always recommends having a fully stocked pantry for the celebrations which must include:
– Abundance of rice – for an abundance in life.
– Plenty of oil – to keep you going.
– Sweet things – to keep your life sweet.
– Mandarins and oranges – pronounced ”GUM” in Cantonese, which sounds like Gold are for Good Wealth.
– Endless noodles to represent long life.
The running theme of performing certain rituals for luck follows through onto the banquet table for Chinese New Year. Everything is about wealth, prosperity, good health, or abundance in life.