So we slide into February, the month of reckoning for the third of Americans who have already broken their New Year’s resolutions. (Shamefully, I am one of them. My resolutions lasted less than a week.)
Good news! Chinese New Year gives those of us who have fallen from grace a chance for redemption. Also known as Lunar New Year, the festivities start on the first day of the first new moon of the year (Feb. 3 this year) and last for the next 15 days, which are full of celebration, ancestral recognition and feasting. Lots and lots of feasting.
Host your own Chinese New Year party or just prepare a traditional dish to bring yourself and your family good vibrations in the coming year.
Prosperity and Luck
Display and eat citrus fruits like tangerines and oranges to bring yourself money and good fortune over the coming months — the Chinese word for “gold” is the same as the word for “orange,” and the word “tangerine” is similar to “luck.” If you can, find citrus with the leaves on to signify longevity. The pomelo is an outsized citrus found in Asian specialty food stores that’s meant to bring prosperity and status.
Success and Family
Cook up a whole fish — the word “yu” in Chinese means both “fish” and “abundance” — or chicken. Traditionally they are served with head, tail and feet intact to symbolize completeness and family togetherness.
Stir-fry a dish of chow mein or another Chinese noodle speciality to bring yourself a longer life. Avoid cutting the noodles — the longer they are, the longer your life is said to be.
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