Posted on January 13 2020
So the Lunar New Year celebrations have begun and you and your little ones are tossing your first yu sheng. Only problem is: you don’t know what the correct order is, nor the phrases that accompany each step. Here’s our super quick guide. Bonus: A lot of these are perfect for greeting your relatives with!
1. Raw Fish
Accompanying phrase: 年年有余 (nián nián yǒu yú)
which represents an excess abundance through the new year.
Accompanying phrase: 大吉大利 (dà jí dà lì)
wishing your family/colleagues good fortune and luck.
3. Pepper and Cinnamon
Accompanying phrase: 招财进宝 (zhāo cái jìn bǎo)
to attract treasure (bao 宝) and wealth (cai 财).
Accompanying phrase: 财源广进 (Cái yuán guǎng jìn)
to have an abundance of wealth and fortune.
Accompanying phrase: 鸿运当头 (hóng yùn dāng tóu)
that is, good luck is right at the doorstep.
6. Green Radish
Accompanying phrase: 青春常驻 (qīng chūn cháng zhù)
which is a wish for eternal youth.
7. White Radish
Accompanying phrase: 风生水起 (fēng shēng shuǐ qǐ) and 步步高升 (bù bù gāo shēng)
or a prosperous business, and for employees, a promotion.
8. Chopped Peanuts
Accompanying phrase: 金银满屋 (jīn yín mǎn wū)
or a home filled with gold and silver. Additionally, the peanut is a symbol of eternal youth.
9. Sesame Seeds
Accompanying phrase: 生意兴隆 (shēng yì xīng lóng)
for a prosperous business.
Accompanying phrase: 遍地黄金 (biàn dì huáng jīn)
or having the entire floor filled with gold.
11. Plum Sauce
Accompanying phrase: 甜甜蜜蜜 (tián tián mì mì)
wishing everyone sweet and loving relationships.
Finally, mix the salad and chime in with all sorts of auspicious greetings like the ones above.
The fail-safe, of course, is 发啊 (fā a) “Huat Ah”, but you might want to vary it a bit.
Additionally, if your toddler or preschooler wants to join in, but hasn’t quite grasped chopsticks yet, they could try using these for practice: Skip Hop Zoo Little Kid Training Chopsticks ($12.90) or the Pigeon Training Chopsticks for left-handers ($6.90).
Image Credits: KOMA