By Stephen Blaxhall
And next... Another wonderful celebration in Chinese New Year, on January 28th, 2017. Also known as the Spring Festival, it is based on the lunisolar calendar and the phase of the moon.
Chinese New Year is a festival of eating. One of the most popular dishes, for the Chinese of Singapore and Malaysia, is the multi-coloured and viscerally impressive Yusheng, or raw fish salad.
Yusheng (鱼生), originally thought to have originated in China’s southern Guangdong region, not only translates into “raw fish", but when pronounced in Mandarin, also sounds like, an increase in abundance (余升). And in Guangdong, where the local dialect is Cantonese, the term of lo hei (捞起) is used, which also sounds like rising abundance.
Auspicious wishes are said out loud when the ingredients, usually fish and raw vegetables, and condiments, such as plum sauce and sesame oil, are added into the base. The salad is then vigorously tossed by those participating in the meal, in the hope of bringing about ample abundance, prosperity, and good fortune in the year ahead.
Yusheng is usually only found during the Chinese New Year period, and is traditionally served on ren ri, the seventh day of New Year. The dish can be found in almost every Chinese restaurant and coffee shop on the Malaya peninsular.
A quick Yusheng recipe: Mix raw fish (salmon is a good choice) with radish, carrots, cucumber, capsicum, pickled ginger, parsley & chopped nuts. Dress with plum sauce and lemon juice, water and sesame oil.
Why does Chinese New Year move around?