The Lunar New Year is one of the most vibrant holidays celebrated around the world. While the way it’s celebrated differs depending on who you are and where you are, the sentiments remain the same. Families reunite and celebrate with lively parties, family gatherings, or by going out to dinner. Lights, red decorations, and plates piled high with delicious food ring in the new year, red envelopes are stuffed with money and exchanged, and citrus fruits like mandarin oranges and tangerines bring luck and prosperity.
“For me, Lunar New Year conjures memories of fierce joy and being together with family. Big feasts, loud, crowded tables, and lucky superstitions. The New Year arrives with a roar. It’s a riot of color, especially reds and golds. It makes me feel connected to a heritage that’s thousands of years old and provides a truly fresh start and clean slate every year – more so for me than the January 1st New Year.”– Michelle Chan, Imperfect Foods Grocery Merchandiser
This year (the year of the ox), the holiday begins on February 12 and continues for 15 days through the lunar cycle. And while going out to eat or getting together with friends and family for a meal may not be on the table, cooking something delicious at home certainly is.
Longevity noodles are one of the most popular dishes enjoyed during the Lunar New Year. Traditionally, the dish was prepared as a single verrry long noodle in broth or sauce to symbolize a long life and bring you luck in the coming year. But nowadays, they’re typically just rather long ramen or rice noodles. With pan-fried shiitake mushrooms and green onions, this dish is best eaten fresh. Although we doubt you’ll have an issue with leftovers.
During the Lunar New Year, dumplings represent prosperity— as they look like ancient gold and silver money pieces. The different fillings, like cabbage and radish, can be good for luck, your mood, or even a healthy complexion. Dumplings are typically considered to be just about anything that’s a bite-sized dough pocket stuffed with a delicious filling. Potstickers, wontons, and gyoza are the most common. They often take different shapes, are made in specific wrappers, and have unique preparations. What makes these pork and veggie potstickers “potstickers” is that they’re fried in a shallow pan to create a delicious, crispy, and caramelized bottom while the top and inside remains soft and perfectly cooked.
Chinese Almond Cookies are a simple crisp and buttery cookie full of rich almond flavor. They’re a popular treat to make or buy during the Lunar New Year as they symbolize coins and are thought to bring good fortune. Also, they’re delicious, so what’s not to like?
Happy Lunar New Year! We hope these recipes light up your dinner table.