Thursday, May 28, 2009

A Brief Story Of Duanwu Festival

For Chinese, today is Duanwu Festival, one of the important festival in Chinese culture. Duanwu Festival or in Mandarin 端午节 (Duanwu jie) falls on the fifth day of the fifth month of Lunar Calendar.

It was believed to be a festival to commemorate a true patriot as well as great poet named Qu Yuan who commited suicide by drowning himself in the Miluo River when his state Chu was conquered by their ally Qin. Qu opposed the idea of forming that ally yet being accused of treason/disloyal to his country.

The local people who respected and admired Qu paddled boats out to retrive his body and throw foods into the river to avoid fish from eating Qu's dead body. These were said to be the origin of dragon boat and chinese dumpling called "Zongzi". That is why, Duanwu Festival also being known as Dragon Boat Festival or Dumpling Festival.


Zongzi or rice dumpling is the most significant food in this festival. The celebration looks not complete without it. Anyway, making Zongzi is not easy. It needs good skills to produce a well-shaped and delicious Zongzi. I tried to wrap the Zongzi myself before, but it failed! What a shame! Maybe I really need more practice before I can manage the real skill of wrapping Zongzi.

The main ingredient of Zongzi is glatinous rice and it can be stuffed with different fillings. The most common fillings are red bean paste, peanuts and pork. The shape of Zongzi can be vary, depend on the culture. The most common shape is tetrahedron or triangular.

That is my brief story about the festival. Wish everyone especially my fellow blog followers Happy Duanwu Festival and hope you have a great time celebrating it with your beloved family!

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