The history of tea

Tea plays an integral role in Chinese society, and has done for thousands of years. It is believed that China introduced the rest of the world to tea via the renowned Silk Road trade route that connected the huge country to Russia and the Middle East (and from there to Europe). In fact, its production […]

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Shēngxiào and the Year of the Monkey

Chinese New Year is widely associated with the ancient Chinese zodiac Shēngxiào. With similarities to some aspects of Western astrology, Shēngxiào, or “birth likeness”, attributes and relates an animal sign to each year in a cycle of 12 years. According to some historians, the animals connected to the Chinese zodiac were brought from China via […]

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The Mid-Autumn Festival

The Mid-Autumn Festival is arguably one of the two most important festivals in China. The other, Chinese New Year, is widely recognised and acknowledged globally, with people around the world flocking to their city’s Chinatown to watch brightly coloured dragons dance down the streets to the sound of crashing cymbals. In contrast, the Mid-Autumn Festival […]

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Seasonality in Chinese cuisine

Chinese cuisine is as diverse as its many regions and inhabitants. Traditional northern Chinese food is glutinous and meat-heavy, with an emphasis on dumplings, either steamed or deep fried in hot oil, and sticky-sweet braised braised pork belly or shoulder. Szechuan cuisine is famous for the tingling, numbing heat of Szechuan pepper, while Guangdong is […]

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Lantern Festival

The annual Lantern Festival is celebrated on the fifteenth day of the first month in the lunisolar year, and marks the final day of the Chinese New Year festivities. During the festival, people get together to celebrate the beginning of Spring by lighting lanterns, watching fireworks and eating yuanxiao (or tangyuan), sweet stuffed glutinous rice […]

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Chinese New Year, the Year of the Sheep

Chinese New Year, known as the Lunar New Year or the Spring Festival, is one of the most auspicious dates of the Chinese calendar. It is celebrated at the turn of the Chinese lunar calendar, and therefore the date differs each year. This year Chinese New Year falls on Thursday, February 19th, although traditionally festivities run […]

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