Saturday, February 6, 2010

Chinese New Year Lion Dance Calendar 2010/ Dim Sum Restaurants

Far East Center-Denver
Corner of Federal and Alameda


Sunday, February 14th
12:00 noon Shaolin Hung Mei
1:30 Wah Lum
3:00 Dong Tay Hoa
4:30 Wu Shu Martial Arts

Saturday, February 20
12:00 noon Chua Nhu Lai
2:00 Tai Kung Ha


Palace Chinese
6265 E Evans Ave
Denver, CO 80222
(303) 782-0300

Empress Seafood Restaurant
2825 W Alameda Ave
Denver, CO 80219
(303) 922-2822

King's Land Chinese Seafood
2200 W Alameda Ave
Denver, CO 80223
(303) 975-2399
Palace Chinese

Star Kitchen
2917 W Mississippi Ave #5
Denver, CO 80219
(303) 936-0089

Chinese New Year Traditions for Tiger Year

Bringing In the New Year and expelling the old
• Everything you do on this day sets precedent for the rest of the year
• While many Chinese people today may not believe in these do's and don'ts, these traditions and customs are still practiced.
• Kept because these very traditions, whether believed or not, that provide cultural continuity and link with the past.
• Courting happiness, togetherness and abundance for your family always good

Predictions of what to expect for Tiger Years
• The Tiger is rich in Chinese history and tradition and a symbol of power and authority
• The year of the Tiger is traditionally associated with massive changes and social upheaval.
• 2010 is very likely to be a volatile one both on the world scene, as well as on a personal level
• The Tiger's influence will offer us courage, while inviting bold actions and risk taking.
• Tigers will provide steely resolve, fortitude and determination to accomplish goals.
• Given that, practice traditions that will court good luck and good fortune

Traditions and rituals
• Shooting off firecrackers on New Year's Eve is the Chinese way of sending out the old year and welcoming in the New Year.
• All debts had to paid by this time. Nothing should be lent on this day, as anyone who does so will be lending all the year.
• If you cry on New Year's Day, you will cry all through the year. Therefore, children are tolerated and are not spanked, even though they are mischievous.
• All cleaning should be done before New Years. Don’t use brooms on New Years Day as you do not want to “sweep away” good fortune.
• Fish also play a large role in festive celebrations. The word for fish, "Yu," sounds like the words both for wish and abundance. Fish. As a result, on New Year's Eve it is customary to serve a fish at the end of the evening meal, symbolizing a wish for abundance in the coming year. For added symbolism, the fish is served whole, with head and tail attached, symbolizing a good beginning and ending for the coming year.

Courting good fortune and prosperity
• Encouraging everyone to hedge their bets this economic year with symbols of health, happiness, wealth and abundance
• Lai See: red envelopes called "lai see" to give to young, unmarried children for good luck.
• Use a lot of the color red, which is the color of rejoicing and happiness
• Serve golden food to represent wealth: Golden oranges and egg rolls (golden ingots)

Invitation to celebrate with the Asian community for Chinese New Year
• The Lion Dance Tradition and Symbolism: The lion dance has been part of the Chinese culture for thousands of years.
• The lion, a symbol of power, wisdom, and good fortune, chases away evil spirits and brings happiness, longevity, and good luck.
• The lion dance is also performed at many business locations during the Chinese New Year's Celebration for the lion brings prosperity and good luck to the business for the upcoming year.

Chinese New Year: The box of "health and harmony"

The Chinese New Year of the Tiger begins on February 14, 2010 and is celebrated for the next 15 days. More food is prepared and consumed during this holiday than any other time of the year, and much of the food has symbolic connotations.

The Box of Harmony
The box of candies traditionally offered at New Years is round or octagonal, the form resembling togetherness, and contains dazzling rows of fruit and candies to begin the New Year sweetly.
• Each candied fruit is symbolic—though highly sugared, so eat in moderation!
• Symbolisms of and prosperity – a good thing as we deal with current economic realities!
o Kumquat - gold, hence fortune, wealth
o Mango-Golden color symbolizes wealth
o Lotus seeds, crystallized - a full wallet, many (male) offspring
o Candied melon symbolizing good health and growth., having a large number of children
o Coconut: promoting togetherness and friendship
o Water chestnut – unity

The Box of Health and Harmony: A registered dietitian and making healthy recommendations.
• Modernized and updated fruit offerings to also reflect healthy choices.
• These are representative of a food group to encourage: Fruit food group
• Nutrient-rich. That is, they provide much more nutritional value in terms of vitamins, minerals and other healthful components, for the low amount of calories they contain.
o Tangerines are very popular as, among other things, they symbolize abundant happiness.
• Excellent source of fiber and vitamin C
o Walnuts- happiness of the entire family
• Source of omega-3-fatty acid for heart health
o Raisins - wealth, abundance, fertility, many descendants, family harmony
• Only ¼ cup of dried fruit like California raisins counts as one fruit serving and helps meet your recommended 4 servings of fruit/day.
• And try golden raisins-another symbol of gold and prosperity
o Walnuts- happiness of entire family + omega-3 for heart health
o Apricot, dried - gold, wealth
• With anti-oxidants beta-carotene and lycopene
o Apple - wisdom, peace
• Excellent source of soluble fiber and a kid favorite
o Banana - wish for education, brilliance at work/ school
• Potassium to help bone health

Chinese New Year's Eve and New Year's Day are celebrated as a family affair, a time of reunion and thanksgiving.
• Events that take place during this time set the tone for the rest of the year.
• Take this opportunity to celebrate health, and happiness with your family, and focus on getting your four servings of fruit/day—even in the winter

Dim Sum means "touch the heart": Celebrate Chinese New Year and Valentine's Day

Celebrate Chinese New Year and Valentine’s Day with Treats that “touch the heart”
Dim Sum means "the heart's delight" or "touch the heart."

Chinese New year, can fall anywhere between late January and the middle of February, due to cyclical lunar dating.
• On the Chinese calendar, 2010 is Lunar Year 4708.
• On the Western calendar, the start of the New Year falls on Sunday, February 14, 2010 — The Year of the Tiger.
• This year, the date has special significance since it also happens to fall on Valentine's Day making it a doubly auspicious day to celebrate in the West.

To celebrate both Chinese New Year and Valentine’s Day this year, indulge in a variety of dumplings called dim sum.
• In Cantonese, dim sum means "the heart's delight" or "touch the heart."

These delicious little treats come mainly in the form of steamed and fried dumplings containing a wide array of fillings.
• They are usually served in tiers of bamboo steamers or small to medium-sized plates (so that many different varieties can be sampled)
• Or they are served like "dessert carts" that is a cart filled with several different types for people to pick and choose from.

You can make your own—or even better go to one of the many Chinese restaurants that have opened in the metropolitan area.
• It is a fun experience as little carts are wheeled around the restaurant.
• Even if you don’t know what these are, it is easy to out which ones you want from the cart to the server.
• And a picture menu is usually provided to remove some of the mystery.

One of the best known desserts is eight precious rice pudding. A steamed dish decorated with honeyed or candied fruit that is served with a sweet syrup.
• Usually it contains eight kinds of dried candied fruits, and popular at New Year’s as eight is considered an auspicious number.
• The word eight sounds similar to words that mean “prosper” or “wealth.”
• Only ¼ cup of dried fruit like California raisins counts as one fruit serving and helps meet your recommended 4 servings of fruit/day.
• Sometimes a coin will be inserted into the pudding. The person who finds the lucky coin will have the most fortune for the rest of the year

Tiger characteristics and predictions
• Tiger years are explosive. They usually begin with a bang.
• The Tiger's essence is that of nobility.
• In life and in love, the tiger personifies grandness.
• Tigers are loyal, humanitarian and fiercely protect those entrusted to their care
• Tigers will rule the jungle this year!