The history of Dumplings

Dumplings originated in the Han dynasty more than 1800 years ago. Today dumplings are a festive food, but surprisingly their origins are actually medicinal! Zhang Zhojing, a practitioner of traditional Chinese medicine, originally invented them to cure frostbitten ears. He wrapped mutton, chili and medicinal herbs in dough thus creating the first dumpling. He then served two of these dumplings with soup to his patients. The ingredients promoted better circulation and the problem disappeared. Gradually, the custom of eating dumplings spread to the Ming and Qing Dynasties. Today,  people eat dumplings on festive occasions and particularly during the Chinese New Year. 

Dumplings- A popular food in folk

Dumplings are a staple in Chinese tradition and remain popular to this day. During the Spring Festival, dumplings have become an indispensable delicacy. The customs surrounding dumplings vary from place to place with some regions eating the dumplings on New Year’s Eve and some on New Year’s day. But no matter where you go during this festive time in China, you’ll be sure to find dumplings.  

The meanings of eating dumplings- Good fortune

Eating dumplings during the Spring Festival is more significant than just eating a delicious meal. It is believed that dumplings bring good fortune. What kind of good fortune? It depends which dumpling you eat! Eating dumplings is a unique way for people to aspire to a better life as they leave behind the old year and welcome the new. Dumplings are shaped like ingots symbolizing good luck. People often fill them with Jinruyi, brown sugar, peanuts, dates, chestnuts and even coins. Those who eat Ruyi and brown sugar will have sweeter days in the coming year. Those who eat peanuts will live a long and healthy life. Those who eat dates and chestnuts will have early sons. And of course… those who eat coins, will have lots of money. 

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