It’s the Year of the Tiger!
Happy Lunar New Year! Another year has come and gone for the Asian community all across the world. As we bid farewell to the Year of the Ox, we welcome with open arms the Year of the Tiger on February 1, 2022.
As tradition continues, many East Asian families prepare for the coming of spring, prosperous opportunities, and new beginnings.
The excitement across the Gulf Coast can be seen (on Facebook! Lol!) and felt among families and friends.
Many Asian residents along the Gulf Coast flock to the Asian markets to stock up on foods, decorations, customary gifts, and lucky red envelopes for the celebration. The Sun Herald has written a great article on a local Asian market and how it prepares for their customers to help them bring in the new year.
Family Traditions & Customs
As each family has their own traditions, it is customary to deep clean the house (especially sweep!), wash the laundries and dishes, and clear the house of all clutter, trash, and bad aura, so that the home is ready to welcome in the new year with good luck.
Another custom is to eat certain dishes to ring in the new year: braised pork and eggs, bitter melon soup, and Asian slaw. Other dishes to celebrate the festivities include eggrolls, crabmeat soup, rice cakes, fried rice, sweet sticky rice, fresh fruit, Asian slaw, dried candied fruit, and so much more! Keep scrolling for my own personal recipe for fried rice!
But the most important customs of the Lunar New Year are to visit families’ and friends’ homes to express new year greetings, worship and pray for ancestors, and gifting presents and the famous red Li Xi (lucky money) to children and the elderly. It is on this day that our little ones get to wear their best traditional dresses and outfits. And the excitement on their faces and voices are the best part of any celebration.
It is through these customs that we wish one another a year full of prosperity, luck, good health and longevity, and wealth.
MyLien’s Favorite Fried Rice
- 4-5 cups of cooked rice
- 6 large eggs
- 1 pack of Kam Yen Jan Chinese sausage, sliced
- 1 – 12oz bag of frozen mixed vegetables
- 4-5 tablespoons of soy sauce
- Take a large deep skillet and heat on high.
- Toss in the sliced Chinese sausage and stir until fat is rendered.
- Pour in frozen vegetables. Stir until vegetables are cooked through.
- Push to the sides of the skillet.
- Crack the eggs into the middle of the skillet. Scramble the eggs, and begin to fold into the rest of the ingredients. Continue to stir until eggs are cooked through.
- Push to sides of the skillet. Pour the cooked rice into the middle. Pour the soy sauce onto the rice. Fold and stir the rice so the soy sauce is evenly distributed.
- Fold and stir in the rest of the ingredients. Season with pepper and/or salt or soy sauce if needed.
- Enjoy! Like it spicy? Top with Sriracha sauce!
So from my family to yours, Chúc Mừng Năm Mới!!
Photo credits and special thanks to MyChi Nguyen Pham, MyKim Nguyen, and MyLien Nguyen.