Sunday, June 17, 2007

My love on Dragon Boat Festival

It's the time of the year where every Chinese will celebrate the 'Tuen 5 Chit' also known as Dragon Boat Festival (which is the dumplings a.k.a 'Chung' or 'Bakchang' festival). The actual day of the festival will always falls on the 5th day of the 5th Lunar month (19.6.07 for this year). There're many version on the origin of the Dragon Boat Festival but the most famous of all (which I am familiar of) is in memory of Qu Yuan, a virtuos official of the Chu Kingdom from Hunan Province. I do a lookup in the internet and the story goes like this ...

As the king refused his suggestion and when the capital of his nation was occupied by invaders, Qu wrote his final poem beside Miluo River in today's Hunan and drowned himself on the fifth day of the fifth month according to the Chinese lunar calender in 278 BC.

People were sad over the patriotic poet's death. They tossed rice and meat into the river to feed the fish, which would protect Qu's body.To prevent the food from being eaten by dragons, they wrapped the meat in reed leaves and bamboo. That was the original glutinous rice dumpling. In later, wrapping dumplings during the Duanwu Festival became a tradition.

Ancient people believed rivers and the sea were both controlled by dragons. They were also worried Qu's spirit would be harmed by dragons. So they produced some boats with a shape similar to dragons and held races on the river to the thunderous beat of drums to warn dragons not to damage Qu's spirit.

The above clip is from China governement.

What I love about this Dragon Boat festival are the delicious Chung. My grandma used to made the Chung when she's still healthy a few years back. Since she is no longer able to to it (she's very sick), I have been hunting for good & delicious Chung. Last year I got a few from Bee Li (very delicious) but this year, no one to ask from yet ... Since I crave for it, I did the most natural thing every human being will do. I went to the wet market to get it. I was shocked that the price of a normal Chung (consist of salted egg yolk, pork & black eye peas) is RM 2.80 and as for the small 'kan sui chung', it cost RM 1. Although it's so expensive, I still bought a few home to satisfy my cravings. So, in total, I spent RM 21 for 4 normal Chung, 5 kan sui Chung, 2 'kunyit vegetarian' Chung.


jazzmint said...

i like nyonya chung..nice hehe

gerald said...

my colleague brought some back from malaysia. but the filling is so little. 1 tiny piece of pork, tones of rice and beans. is that standard now or is my colleague kena cheated??? RM2.80/piece.

Cheryl Leong said...

Jazz : I love nyonya chung also but can't find any yet.

Dear : U see the photo... I think also small piece but not vy small lar. Bee Li gave me 7 chung last nite *LOL* That one sure very nice. Will take photo tonight and let u see & drool... So, 2nite we paktoh online eat chung ;)

cairo's mommy said...

wah i just had one yesterday... spore chung sucks!!! too bad cant bring in d ones my mom made (pork, egg yolk n even got scallops, slurp!). even cincai buy off the street in KL also nicer than d ones here!!! very depressed