On Thursday, Jan. 23, NC State Dining hosted “A Taste of China” during lunchtime at Fountain Dining Hall.
Chinese New Year, or Lunar New Year, is a three-week festival that celebrates the start of the new year according to the traditional Chinese calendar. The festivities began last week in China and other countries including Vietnam, Thailand and Malaysia, with the official first day of the new year beginning on Jan. 25.
A major aspect of Chinese New Year is the cuisine, traditionally featuring a lavish meal the evening before New Year’s Day, known as the “reunion dinner”. Foods such as seafood, chicken, pork, rice, dumplings, spring rolls, and a variety of fresh fruits and vegetables are shared among family members. New Year’s Day features celebration, fireworks, dancing, as well as welcoming the new year and honoring elders, including parents, grandparents, and great-grandparents.
With a reported 1300+ Chinese students currently studying at NC State University, the meal provided traditional dishes that are not usually found on college campuses in the United States. The menu featured vegetable fried rice, sesame bok choy, ginger-steamed fish, steamed pork bao, made-to-order Zha Jiang Mian with black bean and garlic noodles, jasmine rice, spring rolls and pork dumplings that were served to students, faculty and staff.
The execution was a success, offering both students and staff the opportunity to experience a taste of Chinese cuisine. “It feels so nice when you are studying abroad but can still taste the food from your hometown,” said Evelyn Lin, a Chinese undergraduate student studying nutrition. “I feel proud that people from other cultures have a chance to get to know our traditional festival foods.”
The remainder of the spring semester features global theme meals with menu inspiration from East Africa, Japan, Hawaii, and right here in North Carolina. There will also be events highlighting Mardi Gras, Valentine’s Day and St. Patrick’s Day.
For more information about dining hall events, visit dining.ncsu.edu.