Saturday, January 24, 2009

Lunar New Year Goodies

The finger looking like crackers are Korean Crackers. The Korean also celebrate Lunar New year. This is why I avoided calling this Chinese New Year. The other biscuit comes from Taiwan.It is similar to what my Grandma used to make.

My grandmas used to make a lot of Cantonese and Hakka cakes and biscuits. It is a pity that I didn't pick up the skills. They used to make the cakes from scratch, from grinding or pounding rice into flour.

There is a cake which is very popular, it is called the NIEN GAO. Translated as New year Cake. In my dialect, we called it DAI TUNG JIET Accordingly, there is a Kitchen God CHOU DOW KUNG who listens to all the news and gossips of the household. On a certain day, called the Kitchen God returns to Heaven to report to the Heavenly King all that he had heard. The Heavenly King will reward or punish the household based on the kitchen god's report. Men found a way, that is to serve the kitchen god this sticky NIEN GAO so he couldn't open his mouth to say all the bad things. Even if he could, he wouldn't because he himself would be accused of corruption, having eaten the cake.
My brother Joseph was born on the day the Kitchen God went to Heaven. My Grandma used to call him the little kitchen god. Every year, on Joseph's birthday, we are told this story. So I know this my heart.
I do not like this cake, so I don't make them neither will I buy them.My friend, who gives me cakes on this occasion, remembers I don't eat this cake. Some people call me a yellow banana. Yellow on the outside, and white on the inside.

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