38 weeks, 6 days

Saturday, February 01, 2014

Happy Chinese New Year!

In about a week or two (hopefully!), our horse baby will be born.
According to some sources, babies born in the year of the wooden horse will be "strong-willed" and "unbridled"... However, being that it is a wooden year, he will be less impatient and more reasonable than the other types of horses. I guess we'll just have to see if any of that is true!

Last night, I prepared a traditional Chinese New Year dinner for two. I wanted to continue the tradition of eating all the symbolic foods, as well as burning incense to offer it to the kitchen god. Now that we're our own little family, it's pretty much up to me to keep up these traditions alive. I remember going over to my relatives' houses for CNY in Taipei, having a table covered with food, and eating it nonstop from morning to noon to night. It was nice to spend time with family and to do nothing much but eat. I hope that in the years to come, our son will have the same memories. 

Being almost nine months pregnant, I obviously did not cook all this food. Instead, I ordered from different restaurants and made the easy-to-prepare stuff that was pre-cooked.

I used lots of oranges to decorate the table since oranges look like balls of gold, and the word for orange in Chinese sounds a lot like "luck" or "wealth".

J is gluten intolerant, so instead of long noodles to symbolize longevity, we had rice noodles that weren't that long, but noodles nonetheless. (I didn't make this)

I actually prepared this 年糕 (nian gao) by dipping it in egg and sugar, then pan frying it. Eating this is supposed to raise ourselves higher in the coming year.

This turnip cake, or 蘿蔔糕 (luo bo gao) was also cut and pan fried by me. It is supposed to symbolize a good omen.

Again, because of the gluten free diet, I only made five of these frozen dumplings. Dumplings look like little gold ingots, so they are eaten to bring wealth into the new year.

Buddha's Delight is a vegetarian dish that is usually served on the first day of the new year to cleanse out the body. This dish, along with the rest, were all ordered.

A whole fish is a symbol of prosperity, and the word "fish" in Chinese sounds a lot like abundance.

I think string beans also symbolize longevity, but mostly, I just got it cause all the other food was brown, beige, and yellow. 

And lastly, crispy roasted pork just because it's yummy. 

This was a lot of food for two people, so we're going to be eating this for days...Happy new year!

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