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Traditional foods are at the center of Lunar New Year celebrations

Like many cultures traditional treats like dumplings and pulled noodles are at the center of New Year celebrations.
Credit: tbralnina - stock.adobe.com
Dumplings snack with soy sauce

HOUSTON — The Lunar New Year is underway and that means two weeks of fun, family and, of course, food. Like many cultures traditional treats are at the center of New Year celebrations.

They include noodles that are hand-pulled for customers to see at Trendy Dumpling near Greenway Plaza.

"The New Year noodles are very important to us!” owner Jo Jo Wang explained. She said they represent long life, especially for older folks.

Crescent shaped dumplings like pot stickers, shaped like ancient gold ingots, are the stars of the show. 

“It looks like old time money, like gold, like yuan bao," Wang said. "The more you eat, the more money you make in the future years.

"Grandma, mom, grandchild all sit together and make dumplings. It’s like family get-together time," she said.

 She gave KHOU 11 anchor Shern-Min Chow a refresher course on dumpling making. Hers were a little lopsided but at least they tasted the same.

The Lunar New Year originated in China some 3,500 years ago then spread to neighboring regions and countries, including Taiwan, South Korea and Vietnam.

Most of Asia are ringing in the Year of the Rabbit.

Koreans call the Lunar New Year “Seollal."

The Vietnamese call it “Tet” and they spend days making the all-important rice cake. They are celebrating the Year of the Cat.

But one thing that is absolutely the same everywhere: the cash filled red envelope!


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