The Chinese New Year will be celebrated from Friday, February 05, 2019. An important moment in the Asian culture (China, Vietnam, Indonesia, Philippines, Thailand …), where party, gastronomy and family spirit are at the rendezvous.
The Chinese New Year is also know by the Spring Festival 2019. Originally an agricultural festival, the beginning of spring is the first day of the Chinese Lunar Year. Throwing firecrackers would be a way of celebrating it, and the splinters of these firecrackers would drive out the demons. At the sound of firecrackers, we pray peace and happiness. Even if in France the winter should extend for many more weeks, here is how the renewal can take place more quickly, at least in our minds!
Party for 15 days
Unlike the New Year in France, which comes down to New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day, the Chinese New Year holiday takes place over 15 days from the new moon to the Lantern Festival (corresponding to the first full moon of the year).
Every year its sign: after the Year of the Dog in 2018, we will spend February 05, 2019 in the year of the Earth Pig, Chinese astro sign which symbolizes the pugnacity and the ambition, a year of projects and of realizations. The year of the Dog will end on February 4, 2019 and will give way to the sign of the Pig of Earth.
Discover new flavors
What do you eat on this occasion? : meat and especially fish, synonymous with profusion. We eat noodles because their length represents longevity, bamboo, because green is in this culture the sign of youth. After the soup, the cake of the year (rice filled with red beans) is tasted to bring luck and prosperity. This is a way of feeding with poetry.
To disguise oneself !
Where to celebrate Chinese New Year? Being the equivalent of Christmas in France, it is for Asian people the opportunity to reunite the family and to give oneself gifts. As every year, parades are organized in the districts of the 3rd and 13th district of Paris at others, where we attend a festive and colorful parade, full of dances, dragoons and lions.
What are the peculiarities of the Chinese New Year?
The main feature of the Chinese New Year 2019 is that it does not happen on a specific date. It depends entirely on the moon and the sun and falls every year between January 21st and February 19th. As you know, each year is associated with a Chinese zodiac sign, an animal, and there are 12 of them in total. This year, it’s the Dog’s turn to be honored!
As we celebrate New Year’s Eve, Chinese people are celebrating the New Year for 15 consecutive days. During this period, you may have noticed that red is omnipresent … and it is not a coincidence because this color symbolizes luck. The popular dragon dance is the symbol of happiness and prosperity.
As for food, the dishes eaten the day before have their own symbolism: ravioli bring good luck, chicken ensures health, while rice cake brings wealth.
It all starts on New Year’s Eve, when the family comes together to feast on specially made Christmas food. Some dishes are prepared up to a week in advance. Typical dishes include:
ravioli with meat in which can be found a coin supposed to bring fortune to the one who falls on it;
fried noodles appreciated for their length symbolizing longevity;
a whole fish, symbol of abundance, the word abundance 裕 yù having a pronunciation very close to 鱼 yú, the fish;
shrimps, their displacement in their natural environment symbolizing vitality;
green vegetables including long leaves symbol of the family unit;
from the Chinese fondue, a fragrant broth in which diners dive meat, seafood and different vegetables, symbol of friendly sharing and friendship.
a “New Year’s cake”, made from sweet rice flour, as well as clementines, both of which symbolize prosperity.
Cult of ancestors
On the first day of the year, the tribute to the ancestors is even more “sacred”. The family members present a multitude of dishes, salty as sweet, fruit and wine, symbol of abundance and sacrifice, and pray before the altar of the ancestors by lighting incense and red candles. It is a way to show their gratitude to the ancestors and ask them for protection and kindness for the coming year.
For believers, temple prayers are observed.
Red is the lucky color par excellence for the Chinese because symbol of prosperity and happiness. That is why the Chinese like to wear a red garment, decorate their interior with red lanterns, stick on their doors red banners on which are written greetings written in Chinese ink.