Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Candies, snacks, dried meats oh my!

Yes, It's Chinese New Years time! And today my friends invited me to join them in going to the 年貨大街 or New Years Street. Every Chinese New Years, DiHuaJie 迪化街 turns into a giant block party. The streets are closed and the venders come out in hordes to solicit their candies, snacks and dried foods. It's tradition to buy bags of individually packaged Taiwanese (and some western) candies and put them in a bowl at home. During this holiday season, in Taiwan, you'll undoubtable be receiving many family members and friends into your home. So it's always a kind gesture to offer them something to nibble on. I'm still a little vague about this tradition, so perhaps some one can fill me in. Apart from the candies, you can find many other venders hawking other Taiwanese snacks and dried goods. The most popular among them being peanuts, chinese beef jerky, flavored corn puffs, mandarine oranges, milk taffy 牛軋糖, dried mullet roe 烏魚子, dried fish and shrimps and sticky rice cake 黏糕. It's a huge event and the streets are packed with people and cars trying to find parking. They have cooked food stalls for when you get hungry too. But you don't need that, because you can get full off the samples. All venders are very eager to hand out samples. You can walk the event vender by fender eating whatever peaks your interest. This was my first experience as I skipped it last year. My mistake. It was quite fun and I look forward to attending next years. Now that I have a better idea of what they offer, I look forward to coming with more money to spend on the goodies! Everyone says it's impossible to lose weight during Chinese New Year and it is TRUE. Especially in asian countries, with the numerous family gatherings, friend gatherings, the New Years Street and festivities. It's like Thanksgiving over the span of a week. Happy New Year everyone, 新年快樂, Gong Hei Fat Choi!

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