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dragon2012
2012 Year of the Dragon

kayes



Registered: July 2008
Location: Penang Malaysia
Posts: 4,806
users gallery
Will it be a tumultuous year? The world will end on 12.12.12?
· Date: January 8, 2012 · Views: 12983 ·
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Orange

Registered: February 2009
Posts: 3,163
January 9, 2012 3:00am

This is a very timely and auspicious pic. to welcome 2012 Year of the Dragon. A very Happy Dragon Year to Kayes and all friends of Ipoh Talk!
Orange

Registered: February 2009
Posts: 3,163
January 9, 2012 3:10am

Someone told my colleague this: "It's not necessary to be filthy rich as long as you are healthy, there is harmony in the family and the money is coming in constantly - "tak putus-putus". The person who said this to my colleague is a very famous fortune teller.
blue grass

Registered: September 2008
Posts: 995
January 11, 2012 4:38am

'Tis the time of the year for family reunions and I'm looking forward to see my children and relatives. There is a lot of activity going on in the kitchen and the aroma floating out does make the 22nd night seem so far away!!
Orange

Registered: February 2009
Posts: 3,163
January 11, 2012 5:59am

Lunar New Year eve is always referred as "Nien Sum Sub" (30th. of 12th lunar month) but this year is "Nien Ya Kow" (29th of 12th lunar month).


Hi Blue Grass,


It's only 10 days to CNY! It is said that time travels like snail when you are waiting .....Smile Besides the activity going on in the kitchen, I am sure your children and relatives' children know that you have "Tai Lai Si" (Big Ang Pau) all ready for them too. Smile
kayes

Registered: July 2008
Location: Penang Malaysia
Posts: 4,806
January 14, 2012 7:45pm

Since 2012 is the year of the dragon, I wonder whether there will be more lion dances or dragon dances.


http://penangnewspaper.com/pics7/liondragon.jpg
Orange

Registered: February 2009
Posts: 3,163
January 14, 2012 9:49pm

A good question! Smile Both lion and dragon dances are to ward off evil spirits and bring in good luck. Dragon dance consists of more team members, so it should be longer than lion dance. To me, I prefer dragon dance. But of course, minus the scaring loud sound .....
Orange

Registered: February 2009
Posts: 3,163
January 15, 2012 4:55am

I am so happy I have accomplished what I planned to do for this weekend. Yesterday I made Pineapple tarts using the same recipe we have been using every year and this afternoon I fried arrowroot (Nga Ku in Cantonese) chips.


Arrowroot is a small bulbous tuber that looks like water chestnut but with starchier texture. Frying arrowroot chips is not difficult. Just peel the arrowroot skin with a peeler and soak the peeled arrowroot in water. Heat oil in a wok and slice the arrowroot with a slicer direct into the hot oil. Fry the sliced arrowroot till golden brown. Drain and store the chips in air tight plastic canisters. This year is the first time I try making arrowroot chips. It is so easy to make that I managed to get six plastic canisters of chips. I am sure my relatives and friends will be very proud of me when I give them the homemade arrowroot chips as presents for this CNY. Smile
Orange

Registered: February 2009
Posts: 3,163
January 16, 2012 2:19am

This year CNY comes early. Price for this year's tangerines is cheaper by 10%. I have tried some of them and they are sweet, despite the early harvest.
blue grass

Registered: September 2008
Posts: 995
January 17, 2012 2:12am

Hi Orange, thanks for info about the 'Nien Ya Kow' this year. How's traffic in KL? China town choc-a-block? Traffic is building up in Ipoh too as I see many out-of-town cars. How will you be celebrating this Chinese?
Orange

Registered: February 2009
Posts: 3,163
January 17, 2012 5:47am

Hi Blue Grass,


Used to go to Chinatown to buy Chinese New Year decorations. But now these decorations, Yoke Kon and cookies are easily available at shopping complexes. This year I volunteer Smile to make pineapple tarts, peanut cookies and arrowroot (Nga Ku) chips. I made extra so that these cookies and chips come in handy when go visiting. Ee Yan Sang hampers are very popular during these recent years. As for this year's "kum", price wise is okay and the taste is quite sweet.


Old Klang Road is always jammed during this time of the year. We used to buy fish, big prawns and Sheen (Chinese leeks) from Old Klang Road wet market. Now Chinese leeks can be bought from hypermarket, as for 'Tau Tai Chong' (white pomfret) and big prawns are 'Kow Dim' (settled) by our relative who will bring them back when he comes back from Sandakan. Shark-fin, sea cucumber and other 'Hoi Mei' belong to my SIL's "department". Smile


When visiting relatives, a strict "protocol" has to be observed - always visit those who are older than our parents first. As soon as you reach your elder relative's house, the first question is always: "Is our house the first one you visited?" and you must be "pandai-pandai" to reply: "Yes!" even though the first house you visited was probably your cousin's or neighbour's house to play "Sum Chong"! Smile
blue grass

Registered: September 2008
Posts: 995
January 18, 2012 3:38am

Hi Orange, thanks for the reply. You understood my question even though it was incomplete! I of course wanted to say Chinese New Year. Happy New Year of the Dragon to you and your family.
ACS77

Registered: September 2008
Posts: 218
January 18, 2012 6:57am

Hi Kayes, Ken, Blue Grass, Joe, Orange and everyone at Ipohtalk,


Happy Chinese New Year to everyone and their families.


ACS77
Orange

Registered: February 2009
Posts: 3,163
January 18, 2012 7:07am

Hi Blue Grass,


This is what we call "printing ghost". Before any text is sent for printing, 3 or 4 people may have proofread it but no one detects the mistake. As soon as the printed copy comes, everyone can spot the error. Generally 5% is allowed for "printing ghost". There is why in printing, we have erratum and sometimes errata.


A Very Happy Dragon Year to you and fly.
Orange

Registered: February 2009
Posts: 3,163
January 18, 2012 7:14am

Erratum:
Last line for the first para should be: "That is why in printing, we have erratum and sometimes errata." Sorry for the typo error!
Orange

Registered: February 2009
Posts: 3,163
January 18, 2012 7:17am

Thanks Sam! A Very Happy Dragon Year to you too!!
Orange

Registered: February 2009
Posts: 3,163
January 18, 2012 7:46am

Talking about CNY cookies, still remember how we used to make Kuih Kapit in the front car porch with our Ipoh neighbours. We stopped making Kuih Kapit when we moved to KL. We still have 6 Kuih Kapit moulds in the store. Besides Kuih Kapit, we also have Kuih Bahalu and Kuih Ros moulds. The moulds for Kuih Bahalu and Kuih Ros are made of 100% copper. We used to have three Kuih Ros moulds. Friends and neighbours borrowed them and "loan on loan" (friend loaned to her friend), and now we are left with only one Kuih Ros mould. We didn't make any Kuih Bahalu for the last few years, but we make Kuih Ros aka Kuih Goyang every year. Usually we make Kuih Ros two or three days before CNY so that the Kuih Ros won't 'Chow Yau Yik' or 'bau hapak'.
Orange

Registered: February 2009
Posts: 3,163
January 18, 2012 3:41pm

In Cantonese, Kuih Ros is called 'Wong Foong Tou' (beehives). Smile
Orange

Registered: February 2009
Posts: 3,163
January 19, 2012 6:17am

Yesterday a mum-to-be won a RCZ worth RM200,000. RCZ is the 2010 Coupe of the year. Malays believe: "Anak bawa tuah!" And this 'anak yang bertuah' is going to be a Dragon baby since CNY is only 3 days away. Wow!!


7 years later and when these new Dragon babies enter Std. One, it is expected more classes will be opened to cater for the increase in student enrollment. Someone who was born in 1988 (Dragon year) said when he was in Std. 1, 5 extra classes had to be opened.
Ken Chan

Registered: July 2008
Location: Chicago. IL, USA
Posts: 1,170
January 20, 2012 7:13pm

Kayes, Blue Grass, Joe, Sam, Orange and all Ipohtalk kakis,


CNY Greetings form snowy Chicago! Here's hoping that you and your family would be blessed with good health and great happiness in the Year of the Dragon. Eat, drink and be merry. Enjoy the festivities with your loved ones. Cheers and 'Yam Seng'!
Bomoh

Registered: September 2008
Location: Mount Gambier, South Australia
Posts: 98
January 21, 2012 4:31pm

Gong Xi Fa Cai from South Australia, we will be having our steamboat tomorrow night complete with Chinese veg grown in our own garden and very good Australian prawns and fish!
Retired Falcon

Registered: August 2008
Posts: 1,168
January 21, 2012 4:49pm

Hi Kayes, Ken, Blue grass, Sam and all on I/Talk,
Here's wishing you all a very Happy and Prosperous New Year. Looks like a wet day here in KL but should be clear skies tonight for the fireworks. Smile
Have a good time everyone and Cheers!!!
blue grass

Registered: September 2008
Posts: 995
January 22, 2012 2:17am

Hi Kayes and friends of Ipoh Talk
May the Year Of the Dragon bring you health, wealth and happiness. Thanks for all your good wishes too. Here's to a wonderful 2012 to all of us! Cheers.
kayes

Registered: July 2008
Location: Penang Malaysia
Posts: 4,806
January 22, 2012 6:18pm

hi all.


It is 10 am on the 1st day of the Year of the Dragon and I am waiting for Ethan to come to collect his ang pow Smile Wishing all at Ipoh Talk a very Happy & Prosperous New Year!
Orange

Registered: February 2009
Posts: 3,163
January 24, 2012 2:26am

To Ken & 家人:


新年快乐!万事如意!!
Orange

Registered: February 2009
Posts: 3,163
January 24, 2012 2:38am

To Ethan & 家人:


新年快乐!天天好天!!
Orange

Registered: February 2009
Posts: 3,163
January 24, 2012 3:20am

Hi Bomoh (you have an interesting and catchy name Smile),


Gong Xi!! Gong Xi!!


My SIL also prefers steamboat for CNY reunion but she always seems not to get any approval because of the must-have item - fish. Fish in Cantonese is Yi . Yi sounds like abundance in Cantonese and the fish we have during CNY reunion must be 'Yau Tao Yau Mae' (Got "head and tail" - or with good beginning and good ending). If we have fish for steamboat, we have to use fish fillets. It's a big NO NO!


As for prawn - it's "ha" in Cantonese. By having prawns during CNY reunion, symbolises everyone is "ha ha tai siew" or happy throughout the year. Smile


A very happy dragon year to you & fly!
Ken Chan

Registered: July 2008
Location: Chicago. IL, USA
Posts: 1,170
January 24, 2012 2:12pm

Hi Orange,
Thanks for the CNY greetings. I don't have the knowhow to type in Chinese even though I can speak fluent Mandarin. Hence, I return your greetings in my unorthodox pinyin. Hsieh Hsieh Ni. Wo Ye Chu Ni Sin Nian Kwai Luh, Shen Ti Jian Kang.


My cousin from KL comes over to celebrate CNY with us every year. She came loaded with goodies including ice-packed 'Tau Dai Chong' fish (from Kuala Selangor), muruku. nga ku chips and a variety of other cookies and snacks. It's a great time to catch up with relatives and loved ones during the festive season and the extra 'cargo' that came along was a tasty bonus indeed.
Orange

Registered: February 2009
Posts: 3,163
January 24, 2012 4:17pm

Hi Ken,


Kuala Selangor is famous for sea-food. Fishermen from the same area like Sg. Besar, Pasir Panambang own big boats and they fish in the international sea. Being small towns and with not much entertainments, these big timer fishermen are very loaded. Because of this, I was told China dolls are doing roaring business here.


Kuala Selangor is also the place where I buy Kuih Kapit. Since we stopped making Kuih Kapit with our Ipoh neighbours after coming to KL, our neighbours used to buy for us Kuih Kapit from a Chinese lady from Pasir Pinji, Ipoh. Few years back this lady also stopped making Kuih Kapit. Through my colleague, I got know Kuih Kapit from Kuala Selangor are crispy and thin. So every year I buy few tins (size of a big Milo tin) of Kuih Kapit from Kuala Selangor for my Ipoh neighbours and relatives.
Orange

Registered: February 2009
Posts: 3,163
January 25, 2012 2:07am

There is a shop in Pasir Penambang, Kuala Selangor sells good and fresh Heong Pieng. This shop is along the road where all the sea-food restaurants are located. To be exact, it is right opposite Jati Seafood Restaurant and Riverside Seafood Restaurant. The name of this shop is very auspicious - "168". Their huge ancient electric oven is placed at the entrance of the shop. So when you are enjoying your seafood at the restaurant across the road, you would smell the good aroma from the freshly baked Heong Pieng if you go there for sea-food lunch. They claim that they use only honey instead of sugar for their Heong Pieng. Besides Heong Pieng, this "168" shop also sells products from the sea like, ikan bilis, udang kering, perut ikan and prawn crackers. Their prawn crackers are big, fresh and crunchy. Yum yum.
Orange

Registered: February 2009
Posts: 3,163
January 28, 2012 11:49pm

Today is 'Yan Yat' (7th day of the first lunar month). 'Yan Yat' is everybody's birthday. Time of the year to eat 'Sang Yi Chok' (rice porridge with fish). Happy 'Yan Yat' to everyone!!
blue grass

Registered: September 2008
Posts: 995
January 29, 2012 2:29am

Yes, today is everybody's birthday and we are celebrating it with friends and relatives. 'Chook' and 'yee sang' are on the menu. Excellent combination! Washed down with a bottle or two of sparkling wine of course. Cheers.
Ken Chan

Registered: July 2008
Location: Chicago. IL, USA
Posts: 1,170
January 29, 2012 1:20pm

Hi Blue Grass & Orange,
Indeed, Happy Birthday to one and all. It gives foodies like us another reason to celebrate and eat even more. Had 'Yee Sung' chook for breakfast this morning at Chinatown. For lunch, the Mrs. fried Hokkien Mee ("Tai Lok Meen') and we also had home-made chendol for dessert. Dinner time was reserved for surf and turf (lobster tail and filet mignon) done in oriental style (lobster braised in satay sauce and steak flavored with miso/teriyaki sauce). Of course, the 'Lou Sung' dish was a 'must-have' on this occasion. The CNY parade was also on in Chinatown and with the milder than normal weather, the crowd were humongous. Tomorrow night (the 8th Day of CNY), the Hokkien community will start to observe 'Theen Koong Daan'. I can recall that this was a really big occasion, especially in Penang. The roast pig, and the burning of the sugar canes, and a table full of offerings came vividly back to my memory. If I am not mistaken, the table was also raised to a higher than normal level. So, if you are celebrating 'Theen Goong Daan' have fun and carry on feasting!
Orange

Registered: February 2009
Posts: 3,163
January 30, 2012 3:01am

Hi Blue Grass,


Our family celebrates 'Yan Yat' with 'Sang Yi Chok' way before we have 'Yee Sang', 'Lou Sang' or 'Lou Hei'. 'Lou Sang' was created in Malaysia during the 60's. Surprisingly, many people from Hong Kong and China have not heard about 'Lou Sang'. It is so popular in Malaysia that it becomes very commercialised. Restaurants start to sell 'Lou Sang' weeks before CNY. Company dinners have 'Lou Sang' for 'Sau Gong' (stop work or last working day before CNY) and everyone wants to 'Lou Sang' or 'Lou Hei' for the new year. One can have more than one 'Lou Sang' session with friends and relatives during the entire 15 days of CNY.


Our family eat 'Sang Yi Chok' on Yan Yat. It is a must for our family. Family members gather round the table to toss thinly sliced raw fish, Chinese lettuce (Sang Choy), Chinese celery (Kan Choy) and Onion leaves (Choong) while saying auspicious wishes. After tossing, we put the tossed 'Sang Yi' into piping hot porridge. The hot porridge will cook the thinly sliced raw fish instantly. We can have many rounds of 'Lou Sang' or 'Lou Hei' during the entire CNY but this dish of 'Sang Yi Chok' is a must for our family on 'Yan Yat' (7th day of the first lunar month} which is everybody's birthday.
Orange

Registered: February 2009
Posts: 3,163
January 30, 2012 3:18am

Hi Ken,


It looks like it's easier to get 'Tai Lok Meen' over there than here in KL. Smile There is no way we can get 'Tai Lok Meen' from hypermarkets and sometimes we have to pre-order 'Tai Lok Meen' from noodles stalls in wet market.
As for the chendol, do you make them (the green chendol)?
blue grass

Registered: September 2008
Posts: 995
January 30, 2012 4:33am

Hi Ken
Sounds like you and family had a sumptuous feast on 'Yan Yat'. But I must confess that I get hungry very often, after reading your posts - you would make a good food writer! I like 'tai lok meen' very much and years ago we ate it in PJ Old Town and at the old fire brigade in KL town. Both were absolutely delicious with loads of 'chee yeow char'. Cheers Ken, CNY is far from over and tonight is 'Pai Tee Kong' or as Orange said 'Theen Goong Daan'.
blue grass

Registered: September 2008
Posts: 995
January 30, 2012 4:44am

Hi Orange


It is good that many traditions are still followed by the young. Are you and family celebrating 'Theen Goong Daan' tonight? This morning, I saw lots of people buying two long sugarcane plants as well as other fruits. I guess prayers start around midnight but the fireworks have already started!
Orange

Registered: February 2009
Posts: 3,163
January 30, 2012 6:09am

Hi Blue Grass,


Coming from a very traditionalist family, there are so many traditions to follow. Besides traditions, there are other practices or ways of doing things to be observed like the way we prepare Wenchang chicken. The chicken wings must be folded INWARDS and tie with strings before poaching the whole chicken. This is very important especially when the chicken is meant to be placed in the praying alter during festival.


On my way home this evening, I saw our neighbour across the street were busy preparing for tonight's celebration. Huge dragon joss sticks are placed in the front garden. To the Hokkiens, 'Theen Gong Daan' is 'Tai Kor Nian' (Theen Gong Daan is grander than CNY).
Orange

Registered: February 2009
Posts: 3,163
January 30, 2012 3:34pm

Last line of the first para should be read as: "praying altar during festival." Sorry for the error!
Ken Chan

Registered: July 2008
Location: Chicago. IL, USA
Posts: 1,170
January 30, 2012 7:32pm

Hi Blue Grass,
'Pai Tee Kong' was a ritual that brought back a plethora of fond memories about my younger days in Malaysia. Coming from a Cantonese family, we didn't celebrate this festivity but I had the opportunity to enjoy a lot of festive delicacies from friends and neighbors. As far as I can remember, the Hokkien families that I am acquainted with, prepared different specialty items for this occasion. Regular offerings like roast pig and duck, and chicken were standard fare but some of my hosts had itek tim (giam chye auck), jeu hu char, kuih topi and nasi kunyit with nyonya chicken curry on the offering table. For dessert, there was 'Pengat', the sweet and savory treat and not to forget 'achar chilli', the appetizer that sent ripples of spicy sensation through my taste buds. All these were old-world Nyonya favorites that tasted refreshingly different from the usual Cantonese food that was the staple in my daily meals at home. You can imagine how enjoyable these sumptuous treats were to a foodie like me.


Indeed, I was asked if I am interested in writing a restaurant review for the college newspaper
during my university days. I did not take a bite of the bait because at that time, I was working full time to pay my way through school. However, I did write regularly for the in-house magazine in one of my previous jobs. To me, Malaysian Chinese food, with the infusion of a variety of taste and flavors from different provinces and peppered with local Malay influences is far superior than the mainstream Chinese cuisine that is offered by restaurants in Hong Kong.


By the way, why do some families raised the offering table to a higher than normal level when they 'Pai Tee Kong'? I noticed that this was done primarily by some Hokkien families in Penang. Is there any special significance to this practice?
blue grass

Registered: September 2008
Posts: 995
January 31, 2012 7:31pm

Hi Ken


Yes indeed, "Pai Tee Kong" is even more significant to Hokkiens then first day of Chinese New Year. My in-laws used to do it in a big way with all the goodies you mentioned and huge joss sticks that burned till the next morning. The best part of the event was, of course, the cutting up of the roast pig and the feasting thereafter.
I do remember the raised alter table but not the table with the offerings of food and fruits. I will have to ask the family elders for you about the raised tables, not sure why. Perhaps the reason may be that since the prayers and offerings are for the 'God of Heaven', they have to be placed above us mere mortals. Will let you know.
The alter is always flanked by a pair of sugarcane which are very important to Hokkiens. It seemed that during warring years in China, the Hokkiens, hunted by another ethnic group, hid in fields of sugarcane. They were safe among the cane and when they came out of hiding, it was the 9th day of Chinese New Year. The Hokkiens thought 'The God of Heaven' had protected them with the cane and so every 9th day of CNY, they honour 'Tee Kong' with sugarcane!
Ken Chan

Registered: July 2008
Location: Chicago. IL, USA
Posts: 1,170
January 31, 2012 9:42pm

Hi Blue Grass,
I think your interpretation on the significance of the raised altar table makes sense. In trying to appease the deities, mortals are supposed to approached the Almighty with reverence. As a gesture of sincerity, offerings are placed on a lofty pedestal in order to reach out to the heavens above. This belief could have been influenced by ancient folklore that was the mainstay of Chinese culture for many centuries.


Next on the pipeline is 'Chap Goh Meh', the grand finale of the CNY celebrations. Once again, my brief stint in Penang brought back a whole slew of fond memories about the highlights of this occasion. Images of the gaily decorated buses that ferry the Dondang Sayang troupes around town reappeared succinctly in my mind. At that time, popular Dondang Sayang singers like Baba Kim Teik would be the star attraction who serenaded the crowd with lively tunes of love. Single gals would throw oranges into the sea or rivers, hoping that the citrus fruits would be retrieved by the man of their dreams. I was told that this practice is still alive and well in modern day Penang! Are these traditions observed in a Cantonese city like Ipoh?
Orange

Registered: February 2009
Posts: 3,163
February 1, 2012 1:36am

The act of throwing citrus fruits into the sea is a waste of money. This makes the fruit importers richer and the Bandaraya workers poorer by contacting those numbers written on the fruits. Smile


Anyway, jokes aside! It's fun to keep the tradition alive. Something to look forward to for every 'Chap Goh Meh'!
Ken Chan

Registered: July 2008
Location: Chicago. IL, USA
Posts: 1,170
February 1, 2012 5:14pm

Hi Orange,
We make chendol from scratch, using the juice from pandan leaves to get the green color and flavoring. Some people opt for the easy way by using pandan extract but it doesn't taste the same. As for the syrup, the choice is between gula melaka or gula java. Both are good but gula java tends to have a concentrated flavor, much like strong coffee. Recipes for home-made chendol are easily available on Malaysian food blogs.
Orange

Registered: February 2009
Posts: 3,163
February 2, 2012 6:12am

Hi Ken,


With so many home-cooked Malaysian food, I am sure you are not missing out any of our local goodies.


It is true about those artificial colourings. Recently some wise restaurant owners try to replace banana leaves with green-coloured paper for their banana leaf rice. What is banana leaf rice without banana leaves?!


At home, we have pandan leaves, serai and daun kunyit growing in our back garden at any time. So pandan leaves are easily available whenever we want to make Seri Muka, Kuih Talam, Onde-Onde and when boiling Tong Sui. We used to have Bunga Telang lilit round the common fencing between our back garden fencing and our back neighbour's fencing. Since we seldom make Pulut Tai Tai and we need Bunga Telang for Chang only once a year, we pulled out the Bunga Telang and our immediate back neighbour, Mak Ungku suggested to grow Kacang Botol instead. So now whenever we want to eat ulam kacang botol, we have to use a ladder to pluck those kacang botol since Mak Ungku's land is higher than ours. But if Mak Ungku or any of her family members is around, we would play "throw and catch" game with the plucked kacang botol. Smile We are indeed very lucky to have very friendly neighbours.
Orange

Registered: February 2009
Posts: 3,163
February 2, 2012 7:02am

Now if we crave for cendol, we no longer have to savour it by the roadside and under the scorching sun. Mr. Cendol (estd. since 1952) have kiosks in supermarkets and hypermarkets. Mr. Cendol is 'Perak Mali'. En. Kadir started his cendol stall at Lumut Jetty in 1952 and En. Wahab worked for him. When En. Kadir wanted to go back to India, En. Wahab's friends and relatives advised him to take over the trade and change the concept into kiosks in supermarkets and hypermarkets. Mr. Cendol has kiosks in Sg. Siput & Batu Gajah. At present, Mr. Cendol has 8 outlets in supermarkets and hypermarket. Mr. Cendol has a cabin-like kiosk at Tambun Giant Supermarket. They have just opened a kiosk at the newly renovated One Utama old wing and it's opp. Kenny Rogers Roasters. Their cendol strips are made fresh daily from their headquarters in Ayer Tawar. No colouring and without any preservatives. Their red beans are huge and fresh. They use pure coconut milk. The amount of gula melaka & palm sugar added into each bowl is according to individual preference. The best cendol I have ever tasted!
blue grass

Registered: September 2008
Posts: 995
February 5, 2012 4:33am

Hi Ken


We got it right - the reasons for the raised altar tables at "Pai Tee Kong' on the eve of the 9th day of CNY. My aunts also said that all statues of deities should actually be placed high - have you noticed that most altars tables in homes are at least 3 to 4 feet tall?


'Chap Goh Meh' in Ipoh has always been quiet except for the fireworks late in the night. However, I have heard of young ladies throwing oranges into the Kinta River! I hear fireworks in the distance, so the celebration or partying is starting. Tonight may be the last day of CNY but we foodies will always find another occasion to eat and celebrate.
A happy 'Chap Goh Meh' to you and loved ones. Cheers.
Ken Chan

Registered: July 2008
Location: Chicago. IL, USA
Posts: 1,170
February 5, 2012 7:20am

Hi Blue Grass,
Thanks for the greetings! All our best wishes to you and your family too on 'Chap Goh Meh'. If it is quiet in Ipoh on this occasion, you can imagine how much quieter it is over in my part of the world. Supposedly, this is the Chinese version of Valentine's Day but I don't detect the slightest inkling of romanticism in the air, not in mid-winter, albeit a mild one this year. Tomorrow being a normal working day also dampens the propensity to celebrate on a lavish scale. As far as I know, only San Francisco's Chinatown observe this day in a big way. The city's annual CNY parade is held on the last night of the 15-day celebrations and its mascot, the electronically-lit dragon that breathes fire, is a perennial favorite among tourists. I understand you folks have a 4-day long weekend (Is it Awal Muharam & Thaipusam?), so that extended break from work would undoubtedly put a positive spin on this happy occasion. But like you say, foodies like us could easily find reasons to eat and celebrate. If there is a will, there is a way!!
blue grass

Registered: September 2008
Posts: 995
February 5, 2012 6:00pm

Hi Ken
I forgot to tell you that there was an interesting article about "Chap Goh Meh' in yesterday's 'STAR 2 on Sunday', 5th February. I wonder if you read it. Must have been an interesting night in Malacca.
Ken Chan

Registered: July 2008
Location: Chicago. IL, USA
Posts: 1,170
February 6, 2012 3:21am

Hi Blue Grass,
Thanks for the tip about those articles, The piece about Malaysian Hokkiens and the French linguist's comment about the preservation of the dialect was extremely interesting. I was in Melaka for some years but have never heard of the 'Wangkang' practice to send off evil spirits in a royal barge. The city is a fascinating place, a veritable living museum for history buffs who are keen to retrace the footsteps from the past. 'Cheng Hoon Teng', Malaysia's oldest Chinese temple is amazingly well-preserved and the premises is packed with overflowing crowds on CNY eve. There is well in the temple's compound which provided drinking water to Admiral Cheng Ho when he was in Melaka. Go figure how old is the temple!
kayes

Registered: July 2008
Location: Penang Malaysia
Posts: 4,806
February 6, 2012 6:41am

Tonight is Chap Goh Meh in Penang and I think Ethan threw the first orange Smile


http://penangnewspaper.com/pics7/chapgohmeh.jpg
Orange

Registered: February 2009
Posts: 3,163
February 6, 2012 8:29am

Hi Ken,


It's true that we have a long weekend. Three festivals in a row. Birthday of Prophet Muhammad, Chap Goh Mei and Thaipusum. Truly 1Malaysia! We had many holidays during January and February but there is none in March!:(
Orange

Registered: February 2009
Posts: 3,163
February 6, 2012 8:34am

This Liang Chai Chai always gets VVIP treatment! Smile
Orange

Registered: February 2009
Posts: 3,163
February 6, 2012 8:58am

Chap Goh Mey is supposed to be Chinese Valentine's Day but during this day he played the song "A Thousand Years" by Christina Perri over and over again when she made the final decision - to have separation after merely 2 years of marriage. Sad.....


Our parents and elders can make it to Silver or Golden Wedding Anniversary but it seems it's not that easy these days. Wondering why?



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