Thursday, February 2, 2012

初十一

CNY facts #11: the eleventh day of the chinese new year is for father-in-laws to entertain their son-in-laws.
the eleventh day of the chinese new year is also the day to welcome Zi Gu (the Purple Lady). according to the legend, Zi Gu was a concubine of a rich man in ancient China. the wife of the rich man killed her in the toilet due to her jealousy. the Heavenly God had compassion for her, so he made her the god of the toilet (haha thats weird). Zi Gu represents all the females who suffer under the oppression in the feudal society and therefore, women worship her and regard her as the guardian angel of weak females.

anyway, i decided that since the chinese new year is all about food, i shall introduce you to the longevity buns aka 寿桃. if you didn't already notice, chinese people are all about living for a long long time hahaha.
longevity buns 寿桃 are shaped like peaches and have lotus or red bean paste as fillings. peaches are traditionally associated with long life and immortality (if you watched Journey to the West, you would notice that a lot). longevity buns can be presented as one big individual peach or combined into an elaborate display piece using smaller buns.
so cute right?
in Journey to the West 西游记, the immortal queen mother of the west 西王母 held celestial peach parties for her fellow immortals. the immortal queen mother of the west grew them in her garden and these celestial peaches ripen only once every few thousand years. anyone who consumes such peaches is granted either a long life or immortality. consumption of longevity buns is an aspiration for long life and is often presented to a birthday boy or girl during his or her birthday celebration to wish him/her a long life. longevity peaches are served during birthday banquets of the elderly, especially those celebrating their 60th birthday.
ooh and can i just say that they are oh-so-yummy!
here's my daddy with his longevity buns during his birthday celebration hahaha. these ones were actually filled with char siew/bbq pork filling. super high class hahaha.
my cousins and i playing around with the longevity buns during my grandma's 80th birthday haha. they're so cute!

xoxo,
char

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