My kids are asking why we haven’t tasted yee sang yet this year? Well, Chinese New Year isn’t till tomorrow. Yee sang, or raw fish salad, is a Chinese New Year specialty and although many places have started serving or selling it earlier, I prefer to wait.
Well, actually we feasted our eyes on this Chinese New Year (or CNY for short) display at the One World Hotel lobby. See the pomelos, mandarin oranges, festive lanterns, ang pows (or red envelopes especially the ones with cash inside ) and lucky sayings inscribed on red paper…
… and of course, the yee sang in all its vibrant colors and lucky significance. The funnest part about yee sang is when everyone dips their chopsticks in to toss the salad as high as we can.
The higher you toss, the more good things will come your way (so they say)! And this year, you can bet the economic downturn will inspire people to toss their yee sang even higher !
I know some people would like to make their own yee sang at home. But it’s a lot of hard work grating the carrots, radish and other ingredients, then dye-ing them with food coloring and drying them.
Even then, there’s no guarantee how good it will taste after all the time and effort spent. So I’d rather leave it to the restaurants to do the donkey work, and just enjoy how the flavors of the colorful ingredients, the raw fish slices, the peanut and sesame topping and sweet, sour dressing come together in one mouthful .
Then of course, CNY isn’t complete without the lion dances to ring in a better, more successful Year of the Ox! Yep, even lions eat mandarin oranges, only to regurgitate them on the crowds later. People say it’s good luck if the lion gives you a mandarin (homonym of ‘gold’ in Chinese).
On that note, here’s wishing you and your family Gong Xi Fa Cai and a Happy and Prosperous Chinese New Year!