Happy Duan Wu Festival!

Are you rowing the dragon boat? Oh I’m pretty sure one of my friend who picked up dragon-boating in Sydney is doing so.. Haha

Duanwu Festival, also known as Dragon Boat Festival, is a traditional and statutory holiday associated with Chinese and other East Asian and Southeast Asian societies as well. It is a public holiday in mainland China (since 2008) where it is known by the Mandarin name Du?nw? Jié, and in Taiwan, as well as in Hong Kong and Macau, where it is known by the Cantonese name Tuen Ng Jit. The festival is also celebrated in countries with significant Chinese populations, such as in Singapore and Malaysia. Equivalent and related festivals outside Chinese-speaking societies include the Kodomo no hi in Japan, Dano in Korea, and T?t ?oan Ng? in Vietnam.

The festival occurs on the 5th day of the 5th month of the lunar calendar. This is the source of the alternative name of Double Fifth. This year, it this falls on June 6. The focus of the celebrations includes eating the rice dumpling zongzi, drinking realgar wine xionghuangjiu and racing dragon boats.

These are alkaline dumplings with no filling, eaten with homemade kaya and thickened gula melaka sauce. My friend’s mom made this and a few other dumplings and I had some when I was at her house. Yum Yum.We used to make our own dumplings but that was many many years ago. Now that my mum is a vegetarian and we eat mainly vegetarian at home, our ‘meat’ dumplings are vegetarian versions. Apart from the pork, the rest like chestnut and mushroom remains the same. In my friend’s house, her mum made Nyonya dumpling as well, with white glutinous rice (without the dark soy sauce) and was filled with minced meat stir fried with basil (as according to my friend, she thinks it’s basil) lol.

Wrapping zong zi dumpling is an art! Here’re some videos on youtube I found on how to wrap zong zi.

How to wrap Zong Zi

Wrapping ZongZi

In the typical meat dumpling; bak chang, it consists of soaked bamboo leaves, made into a cone, then scoop in soaked glutinous rice, add some filling (cooked meat, black eyed peas, shiitake mushroom, duck egg yolk, green beans, soaked dried chestnut, dried shrimp) then top with glutinous rice again, press flat, then fold the leaves. Tie with hemp string and boil between 2-4 hours. More info here


4 thoughts on “Happy Duan Wu Festival!

  1. Hi Sweet San…
    Happy Duan Wu Festival to you 🙂 I ordered 3 books , only 2 arrived. Dorie’s Around My French Table and Bon Appetit Desserts arrived last friday. Still waiting for Peter Reinhart’s bread book 🙁 I think it is not the postal fault but the custom side is slow. Hopefully it will arrive this week. If not I have to tell BD about it and hopefully they send again. Thanks for your concern 🙂

    Hope to meet with you again one day soon 🙂


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