In Chinese traditional festivals. The Mid-Autumn Festival and the Spring Festival may be the most important festivals for Chinese people, but in the eyes of Guangzhou and Guangzhou people, the winter solstice is also an important festival, even more important than the Spring Festival. There is a saying in Guangzhou and Guangzhou people that “Winter Festival” is so important that we can see the status of the winter solstice in the minds of Guangzhou and Guangzhou people.
Although in the winter solstice, there is no long vacation, there is no spring festival that the whole country is thriving, joyful, unusual atmosphere, but the two Guangzhou people will be very extravagant on this day, the whole family reunion of worship ancestors and eat big fish and meat, in order to pray for good luck in the next year, everything goes well!
So, what are the customs of the winter solstice? Let’s get to know them together.
Customs of the Winter Solstice: Ancient Traditional Customs
Winter Solstice Festival is also called Winter Festival and Winter Festival. It is not only one of the 24 solar terms, but also a traditional festival in China. There used to be the saying that “winter is as big as year”. The court and the people have always attached great importance to it. Since the Zhou Dynasty, there have been sacrificial activities.
2. Eating dumplings
On the winter solstice of the lunar calendar every year, dumplings are an indispensable Festival meal for rich and poor alike. The proverb says, “When the winter solstice comes on October 1st, every household eats dumplings.” This custom was left in memory of Zhang Zhongjingdong, a medical sage.
Eating dumplings during the winter solstice is the grace of Zhang Zhongjing, a medical sage, for dispelling cold and delicate ears. Up to now, Nanyang still has a ballad that “dumpling bowls are not served during the winter solstice, and ears are frozen and nobody cares about them”.
3. Ninety-nine Decreases the Cold
After the 9th anniversary, some literati and scholar-bureaucrats began to engage in so-called cold-relieving activities. On the 9th anniversary, about nine people drank alcohol (“wine” and “nine” homophonic). Nine dishes and nine bowls were served on the table, and nine pieces of flowers were served on the table for the purpose of eliminating the cold in the 9th anniversary.
Ninety-nine Xiaohan Song: Nineteen and twenty-nine do not start; Ninety-nine and forty-nine go on ice; Ninety-nine to sixty-nine, see willows along the river; Ninety-nine open, eight-nine swallows come; Ninety-nine plus nineteen, farm cattle everywhere.
Traditional Dietary Customs in the North and South of the Winter Solstice
1. Beijing Wonton
Old Beijing used to say “winter solstice wonton summer noodles”. Legend has it that during the Han Dynasty, the northern Huns often harassed the frontier areas and the people were not at peace. At that time, there were two leaders of Hun and Tun clans in the Hun tribe, which were very ferocious. The people hated it so much that they wrapped meat fillings into corners and called it “wonton” with the sound of “muddy” and “tun”. Hate to eat, and seek to calm the war, can lead a peaceful life. Since wonton was originally made on the day of the winter solstice, every household eats wonton on the day of the winter solstice.
2. Southern dumplings
On the winter solstice of the lunar calendar every year, dumplings are an indispensable Festival meal for rich and poor alike. The proverb says, “When the winter solstice comes on October 1st, every household eats dumplings.” This custom was left in memory of Zhang Zhongjingdong, a medical sage. Northern people eat chaos, southern people produce dumplings.
3. Dog and mutton
The custom of eating dog meat in the winter solstice is said to have started in the Han Dynasty. Legend has it that Liu Bang, the great ancestor of Han Dynasty, ate muddled dog meat on the day of the winter solstice, and felt that it was delicious and full of praise. Since then, the custom of eating dog meat in the winter solstice has been formed among the people. Nowadays, people eat dog meat, mutton and various nourishing foods on the winter solstice day in order to have a good omen for the coming year.
4. Red Bean Rice
In the south of the Yangtze River, it is customary for the whole family to gather together on the winter solstice night to eat red beans and glutinous rice together. Legend has it that the Gonggong clan had talented people who did a lot of evil. He died on the day of the winter solstice. After his death, he became a plague ghost and continued to maim the people. However, the ghost feared red red red red red red red red red beans, so people cooked and ate red beans rice on the day of the winter solstice to ward off the ghost and prevent disasters and diseases.
5. Taiwan Waxy Cake
In our country, Taiwan also preserves the tradition of sacrificing ancestors by nine layers of cake in the winter solstice. With glutinous rice flour, animals like chicken, duck, tortoise, pig, ox and goat symbolize auspicious and lucky life. At the early date of the winter solstice or the agreement between the two clans, they gathered in ancestral temples to worship their ancestors one by one according to the order of their elders and children, commonly known as “ancestor worship”. After the sacrifice, a banquet will be held to entertain the ancestors and relatives who come to worship their ancestors. Everyone is happy to drink, contact each other for a long time, the feeling of strangeness, known as “eating ancestors.” The ancestors of the Winter Solstice Festival have been handed down from generation to generation in Taiwan to show that they do not forget their roots. Radish, vegetables, tofu, agaric, etc.
6. Winter Wine Brewing in Suzhou
Gusu attaches great importance to the winter solstice. There is a saying in Gusu: “Winter solstice is like a big year”. Traditional Gusu people drink winter wine on the winter solstice night. Winter wine is a kind of rice wine. It is made by adding osmanthus flowers and has a pleasant aroma. Gusu people enjoy winter wine on the winter solstice night, and at the same time, they will be accompanied by a variety of stewed beef, stewed mutton and other brine dishes. In the cold winter, winter wine can not only drive away the cold, but also place a good wish on life of the Aunt Su people.
Majian is a special product of Zhejiang and Jiangxi, and also a traditional snack of Fujian people and a sacrificial offering of Fujian people. Steaming, frying, roasting and sand frying after drying of Ma Ziyin are suitable. Maxiong is also a famous snack in southern Fujian, among which Nan*an Yingdu is the most famous one. Its raw materials are good glutinous rice, lard, sesame, peanut kernels, ice sugar, etc. Maxiu is sweet and delicious, hungry after eating, with a sweet, slippery taste, and soft, slightly ice. The finished product has bright white color and is smooth, tough and transparent.