The Significance of Honey and the Chinese New Year

With the New Year here, everyone is practicing their new year resolutions, recharging, and feeling hopeful that a year of positive change is upon us. While Americans begin their annual transition on December 31st and into the morning of January 1st, Southeast Asia, specifically China, prepares for one of its most significant celebrations, the Lunar New Year.

This year, Lunar New Year, also known as Chinese New Year, begins February 1st and lasts 16 days. Traditionally, the holiday is a time to honor household and heavenly deities and ancestors, in addition to bringing the family together for feastings. One of the more popular traditions involves honey and the Kitchen God. The Kitchen God is a Chinese deity that watches over the family's domestic affairs. Honey is smeared on the lips of images of the Kitchen God before the New Year, so he only has sweet things to report to Jade Emperor, the principal deity, about the family.

In addition to honoring loved ones, Chinese New Year also consists of feasting with family– with dumplings being an essential dish on everyone's table. If you want good luck going into the New Year, that is.

So join us as we ring in the New Year with Chinese tradition! Try this delicious hot honey soy dipping sauce to pair with a popular Chinese New Year dish, dumplings. Enjoy!

Honey Soy Dipping Sauce (For Dumplings Or Potstickers)

Ingredients:

1/4 cup soy sauce

2 tablespoons of Hot Honey

2 teaspoons minced peeled fresh ginger

1/2 teaspoon sesame oil

1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes

1 teaspoon toasted sesame seeds

Directions:

Whisk together soy sauce, honey, ginger, sesame oil, and red pepper flakes in a small bowl. (Can be prepared 1 day ahead. Cover; chill. Just before serving stir in sesame seeds.

Sources:

https://www.history.com/topics/holidays/chinese-ne...

https://www.nationsonline.org/oneworld/Chinese_Cus...

https://theculturetrip.com/asia/china/articles/chi...