My Favourite Chinese New Year Foods

Posted by : foongpc | Monday, February 9, 2009 | Published in


Today is the 15th day of Chinese New Year. It is also known as Chap Goh Meh, the day where we Chinese celebrate by eating tang yuan, one of my favourite desserts.

Here in Malaysia, today is also Chinese Valentine's Day where young unmarried women gather to throw mandarin oranges into the sea or lake in the hope that their future spouse will pick it up. If you stay in Petaling Jaya or Kuala Lumpur, you might want to head over to Taman Jaya near Amcorp Mall tonight to either throw your oranges (if you are a girl) or collect the oranges (if you are a boy). For gays, you can throw as well as collect. LOL!

Remember to insert your name and contact number in your oranges before you throw into the Taman Jaya lake, or else you'll just be wasting your time. Then you might as well hand me your oranges so I can eat them. Ha ha!

But just to be on the safe side, I think better not include your contact number, maybe just your email address or blog URL if you are a blogger.

Today is also the last day for me to eat my favourite yee sang, so I will definitely not want to miss it!

Here's the yee sang which I "ta pau" (take away) from Magic Wok Restaurant in Damansara Jaya on Yan Yat day (1st Feb 2009). I absolutely love it! The restaurant offered a RM10 discount on that day.

Guess what? The restaurant is offering the RM10 discount again today in conjunction with Chap Goh Meh so I'm going there later today to buy my favourite yee sang!

I am such a big fan of yee sang I even tried the pre-packed one sold in Jusco! It costs only RM10 per box which is enough for 4 people, although on the box, it was stated for 7-8 people!

This is strictly for those with very low budget but still want to try eating this yee sang. Don't expect the ingredients to be as fresh as those found in restaurants. Still, I tried it and surprisingly, it did not taste too bad!

Of course you can also buy pre-packed yee sang from the sushi section in Jusco. Those are fresher but is more expensive, selling at around RM44 per packet.

Every Chinese New Year, I must have the following food or else I would feel as if I am not celebrating the new year! Not in any particular order, my must-have foods are ....

1. yee sang
2. tang yuan
3. pineapple tarts
4. nga ku or arrowheads
5. mandarin oranges
6. lap ngap or waxed ducks
7. kueh kapit or love letters
8. nian gao or sticky rice cakes
9. kuih bangkit or tapioca cookies
10. fah sang peng or peanut cookies

Gosh, just thinking about these foods makes me drool. Haha!

So what are your must-have Chinese New Year foods?

(51) Comments

  1. levian said...

    what is "love letters"? i've heard of the rest but not this. my must have food .. acar! with keropok. :D my favorite would be spicy enough n not too sour. yum yum! :D

    February 9, 2009 at 9:10 AM
  2. TZ said...

    kakaka.... it's difficult to mentioned what is my favor CNY food... it's easier to mention what i don't like to eat during CNY... :p

    February 9, 2009 at 9:52 AM
  3. Shionge said...

    Has to be pineapple tarts :D The yee sang packing is so nice.

    February 9, 2009 at 10:12 AM
  4. khengsiong said...

    One thing left out from your list - bak kuah or dried pork.

    Love letters are my favorite too. My mom and her sister (i.e. my aunt) used to make love letters before CNY. However, in the last few years my aunt's knee problem has deteriorated so she no longer can sit on the floor or on low stool.

    February 9, 2009 at 10:22 AM
  5. Anonymous

    I eat anything and everything! These days, we eat everything whole year thru' so much so that there's really nothing to look forward to anymore during CNY. Btw, are you going to throw oranges too? Hahahahahahaha!!!

    February 9, 2009 at 10:32 AM
  6. Medie007 said...

    i like bakkua! :D :D

    February 9, 2009 at 10:45 AM
  7. molly said...

    Did you add in carot and raddish? I usually use grater to cut them in to fine long strips and add it in, mmm... so yummy!

    February 9, 2009 at 11:13 AM
  8. lina said...

    even though I don't celebrate CNY, I love all the food that I get to eat during CNY. :-)

    February 9, 2009 at 11:22 AM
  9. day-dreamer said...

    I always think it's a waste to throw mandarin oranges into the sea/river/lake... hahaha!

    Happy Chap Goh Meh!

    February 9, 2009 at 11:23 AM
  10. foongpc said...

    levian, acar with keropok is nice too! Maybe no.11 on my list of fav CNY foods! Love letters aka kuih kapit is very popular during CNY. Pls google it or click on the link in my post - I'm sure you've seen it before. If you've not eaten it before, you must try it!

    February 9, 2009 at 12:33 PM
  11. foongpc said...

    tz, haha! I know exactly what you mean! So much nice food yes? So what you don't like to eat? Then I will know what you like! : )

    February 9, 2009 at 12:39 PM
  12. foongpc said...

    shionge, hmmm, pineapple tarts are so yummy!! Drooling just thinking bout it. Haha! Yes, the yee sang packing looks pretty attractive - that's how they lure the buyers like me : )

    February 9, 2009 at 12:40 PM
  13. foongpc said...

    khengsiong, oh yes - bakkua! I forgot about that! OK, make it no.12 on my list of fav CNY foods. Haha! It's not easy to make love letters - maybe you should take over your aunt! : )

    February 9, 2009 at 12:40 PM
  14. foongpc said...

    suituapui, aiyo, you should not eat everything throughout the year lah! Like that, no more fun during CNY cos nothing to look forward to. At least for me, I still look forward to receiving angpow even if the food no longer interest me. Haha!

    Me throwing oranges? You got to be kidding right? Even if I am a girl or a gay, I won't be throwing oranges into the lake. Nowadays you have online dating sites - easier and less hassle! Better eat those oranges! LOL! : )

    February 9, 2009 at 12:45 PM
  15. foongpc said...

    medie007, I love them too but I noticed they were not selling as well this time. Wonder why?

    molly, no I didn't. They already have carrots and radish in it, I think : )

    lina, I'm sure you do - they are just so yummy!! : )

    day-dreamer, I have to agree with you. Such a waste. Want to find husbands, just go online dating sites. More choices and less hassle. It's like you can have your husband and eat your oranges too! LOL!

    February 9, 2009 at 12:51 PM
  16. Anonymous

    My must have maybe are mandarin oranges and prawn crackers... haha, so ordinary!

    February 9, 2009 at 1:11 PM
  17. JL said...

    Well for me CNY ends right after the first two days of the new year. After that no more food even on Chap Goh Mei. Sob sob lol.

    February 9, 2009 at 3:56 PM
  18. foongpc said...

    neo, I like prawn crackers too! But I prefer nga ku more. Haha!

    JL, why end so soon? There's 15 days of CNY to celebrate what! Go celebrate today! : )

    February 9, 2009 at 4:47 PM
  19. levian said...

    oh! we called it "kueh sipit" here. no wonder it sounded so familiar! XD ah those are a must have as well, my mum's favorite. :D

    February 9, 2009 at 5:12 PM
  20. Monica said...

    one of my must-have foods is dried pork :-D Happy Chap Goh Meh & have fun ~

    February 9, 2009 at 7:04 PM
  21. Nick Phillips (15/03/1967 - 04/11/2022) said...

    Oh man, I didn't get to try any Yee Sang this year :(

    February 9, 2009 at 8:29 PM
  22. eastcoastlife said...

    Happy chap goh mei!!
    I also lou yee sang tonight!

    February 9, 2009 at 9:01 PM
  23. Anonymous

    Tangyuen is one of my fav desserts and I eat them almost all year round (my family makes them when we feel like eating).

    So did you pick up any mandarins? ;) hehhe.

    February 9, 2009 at 11:00 PM
  24. vialentino said...

    i must have yee sang....the dinner was treated by my ex-boss...just a normal 8 course meal...shud not be that expensive...

    February 10, 2009 at 12:01 AM
  25. foongpc said...

    levian, oh you call it kueh sipit? That's new to me! : )

    monica, dried pork is delicious! Just that I don't want to eat too much cos unhealthy. Happy Chap Goh Meh to you too : )

    nick phillips, never mind. Wait for next year! : )

    February 10, 2009 at 12:44 AM
  26. foongpc said...

    eastcoastlife, thanks! Enjoy your lou sang! : )

    my bug life, I used to make them with family members long time ago. Now everyone too lazy to make them. So I just go to KTZ in SS2 to eat them. Haha! No, didn't pick up any oranges this year. Been to Taman Jaya and did that many years ago just for the experience and fun : )

    vialentino, oh yes yee sang is a must have during any CNY dinner! : )

    February 10, 2009 at 12:49 AM
  27. Tekkaus said...

    Happy Chap Goh Meh! Hey, you got go "lao gan"? Haha =)

    February 10, 2009 at 3:39 AM
  28. Anonymous

    haha happy chap goh, can I pick an orange? *wink wink*

    February 10, 2009 at 5:26 AM
  29. Anonymous

    I didn't knoe there's chinese vday!!
    Wow! However, I'm not sure if S'pore practise such things.. On the downside, what if a pervert or some rapist picks up a girl's orange with all her details there?? Just wondering.. lol! :)

    February 10, 2009 at 5:59 AM
  30. Anonymous

    So did you pick up a boxful of oranges Foong? LOL That looks like a fun thing to do, very unusual.
    The love letter cookie looks similar to the fortune cookies here in the US. Btw, the souvenir exchange sounds fun! :o)

    February 10, 2009 at 7:51 AM
  31. LifeRamblings said...

    happy chap goh meh.

    February 10, 2009 at 7:54 AM
  32. LifeRamblings said...

    CNY is incomplete without my fave 'bak kua'. i like to savour the ones at jalan imbi, very juicy and addictive indeed.

    February 10, 2009 at 7:56 AM
  33. levian said...

    did you had all the 10 food yesterday as a closure to cny? there were so many fireworks last night compare to the night before cny. :D

    February 10, 2009 at 8:54 AM
  34. Anonymous

    i thought no more throwing oranges at amcorp mall?

    February 10, 2009 at 11:13 AM
  35. eiling lim said...

    yeah i was just telling my friends to include their URL and facebook onto the oranges. It's convenient for the guys to pick them up and quickly search for it with their handphone and then throw them back if they don't like what they see! Lol...

    February 10, 2009 at 11:25 AM
  36. foongpc said...

    tekkaus, I did that many years ago just for fun! Haha!

    wuching, you can't cos you're married! : )

    cashmere, I also don't know whether Singaporeans practise it, but seeing the close proximity with Malaysia, I think they do. Yes, can be dangerous to include your name and tel no. in the orange, so it's advisable to just include email address or facebook address.

    February 10, 2009 at 1:12 PM
  37. foongpc said...

    babette, I did that many years ago just for the fun of it, but only picked a few oranges, not a boxful. Haha!

    Oh, I've heard about the fortune cookies in USA - yes, almost the same!

    You serious about the souvenir exchange? Then just email me your address and I'll do the same : )

    February 10, 2009 at 1:15 PM
  38. foongpc said...

    life ramblings, bak kua is delicious! I love to eat it too but I like the chewy variety, not the soft type. However, I try to limit eating it as it's not very healthy, but once in a while is OK I guess : )

    I'm not sure if I've tried the one at Jalan Imbi, I've tried many places but nowadays I just buy from a shop in SS2 as it's nearer.

    February 10, 2009 at 1:19 PM
  39. Faisal Admar said...

    hahahahahaha foong please throw me the mandarin orange!!!! i will try my best to catch it!!!!

    February 10, 2009 at 1:21 PM
  40. foongpc said...

    levian, let me see... I did eat my favourite yee sang, tang yuan, waxed ducks, fried nian gao with sweet potato, pineapple tarts, mandarin oranges and nga ku! All so yummy!!

    I will eat love letters, tapioca cookies and peanut cookies today! Haha!

    Anyway, I will miss the yee sang most as it won't be available til next year! Also mandarin oranges (though I still have some left) and waxed ducks - both must wait till next year to enjoy again : (

    The rest of the foods are available any time of the year, so no worries : )

    February 10, 2009 at 1:26 PM
  41. foongpc said...

    renaye, oh yes there is! It's an annual affair there. Unless of course they cancel it - I won't know cos I didn't go last night. Been there, done that : )

    eiling, haha! Very good idea indeed! So convenient and can throw back so others might have a chance. LOL!

    February 10, 2009 at 1:30 PM
  42. foongpc said...

    faisal, I'll throw it into the Straits Of Melaka - if the orange find its way to Penang then we are meant to be. LOL!!

    February 10, 2009 at 1:33 PM
  43. Unknown said...

    nice share! wow talking bout the food makes me hungry. and that yee sang is cheap!

    i like yee sang, cookies, lets see... steamboat! :)

    February 10, 2009 at 4:46 PM
  44. Anonymous

    my top ten must-have foods in no particular order are...
    1. nian gao
    2. steamboat
    3. yee sang
    4. green pea cookies
    5. mandarin orange
    6. lurve letter
    7. bakgua
    8. bakhu
    9. lo han zhai
    10. angpaosss

    yala angpaos' considered as food cos they give me energy ma $-$

    February 10, 2009 at 6:41 PM
  45. Mariuca said...

    Oh my! I oso love yee sang la!! Mmmmmmm so yums! :):):)

    February 10, 2009 at 8:57 PM
  46. Mariuca said...

    I've never tried the packet ones at JJ, but now u're making me feel like buying one tomorrow! Esp since u said it's not bad yay! :):):)

    February 10, 2009 at 8:58 PM
  47. Monica said...

    yeah, the best foods are always the most unhealthy..LOL!

    February 10, 2009 at 9:57 PM
  48. foongpc said...

    quachee, yeah the Jusco yee sang is cheap alrite. Oh, I love steamboat too! You also make me hungry now... : )

    annant, angpows? That's so un expected when I read down the list! Thought I read wrongly. Haha!

    mariuca, yes go try it! But don't know whether still have or not, cos CNY is over already. The one sold in the sushi section is fresher, though.

    monica, have to agree with you. If only the good food is healthy, I would eat loads of them! : )

    February 11, 2009 at 12:04 AM
  49. Anonymous

    Sorry to say that I have never tried Yee Sang before. We dun have this practice over here. BTW, it looks to me it is a dish of raw fish and other seafood as well as uncooked vegetables. Am I right?

    February 12, 2009 at 11:33 AM
  50. foongpc said...

    jam, you have never tried yee sang before? I thought all Malaysian Chinese would have tried this before! Yes, it's raw fish plus vegetables, so you can say it's something like raw fish salad. You must try it next year - very delicious! : )

    February 13, 2009 at 2:23 AM
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