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Celebrate the Chinese New Year with Zojirushi

On February 3rd, the new year according to the Chinese zodiac officially kicks in, and the Year of the Rabbit begins. Let's have some fun and start early! We have some Chinese favorites for you this month that you can make so easily, you don't even need to heat up a wok. Learn how to make dumplings, a standard on the menu during New Year's because they resemble the golden ingots used as currency during the Ming Dynasty; serving dumplings brings the promise of prosperity in the New Year!

Rabbit years are generally quiet and refined, when all the conflicts which erupted during the previous Year of the Tiger are resolved. It is usually a time when people will be friendlier and more understanding of each other; when we will not be so bound by rules and regulations that normally prevent us from enjoying our lives.

The legend is that on Chinese New Year, Buddha asked all the animals to come and meet him. Twelve animals came, and Buddha named a year after each one. He proclaimed that people who were born under these years would take on the animal's traits. Rabbit personalities are popular, compassionate and sincere. They are associated with graciousness, good manners, are soft spoken and sensitive to beauty. Some personalities born in the Year of the Rabbit include Francis Ford Coppola, Michael Jordan, Drew Barrymore and Albert Einstein.

A Rabbit is most compatible with those born in the Sheep year. They are both somewhat materialistic and have good taste. The Boar and Dog are also good matches, but the Rooster is an arch nemesis. You are a Rabbit if you were born in the year 1903, 1915, 1927, 1939, 1951, 1963, 1975, 1987 or 1999; this is your year! Don't get complacent by being too content with life--work on your self confidence and take risks so you don't miss out on any opportunities.

Gong Hay Fat Choy! Start the New Year With Something Different

Shrimp Fried Rice
Chinese Pork Dumplings
Pepper Beef Chow Fun
Shrimp yakimeshi is one of the most popular stir-fried rice dishes – quick, easy and delicious at any time of the day. At-the-table cooking is great for dumplings because you can enjoy them while they’re hot, as soon as they’re steamed. Everybody loves chow fun! Noodles will always make an appearance during festive occasions, because they are a symbol of long life in Chinese culture.

This is a common greeting during New Year's in Chinese households; a tell tale sign of how important a role food plays. Everything is symbolic in the food that is served--either shaped like, phonetically sounding like or representing: wealth, good fortune, long life or fertility.

We've already mentioned dumplings (jiao zi); in addition to being a fortuitous shape, its name sounds like the word for an early form of Chinese paper currency. Some cooks will even hide a clean coin in the evening's dumplings, with the lucky guest who finds it destined to come into some money during the new year!

Noodles, which are served year round, take on special significance during New Year's because the long length is associated with long life. By the same token, noodles, vegetables, duck and fish are usually cooked and served whole; never cut into smaller pieces for fear of severing the good luck for the entire family. Indeed, the use of knives and cleavers are avoided altogether, which is why you see whole fish and whole duck or chicken, complete with head and feet, in Chinese New Year cooking.

The Gourmet d'Expert ® electric skillet is a portable, safe and easy to use electric skillet that will have your family talking--about its benefits, about the dinner possibilities and about being able to eat together while you cook! It's the ultimate party appliance that sits on your dining table and involves everyone.

Learn more about our Gourmet d'Expert ® electric skillet and
how easy it is to enjoy hot dishes cooked right at the table!
(To view these videos, you will need Microsoft® Windows Media Player®)

Click here to learn more about Zojirushi Gourmet d'Expert ® electric skillets:
Zojirushi introduces a thermal, vacuum insulated cooking pot that uses its own heat to slow cook the food inside. After food is initially heated on the range in the highly conductive, stainless steel inner cooking pot, the pot is then placed inside the insulated outer container. The food then slow-cooks by its own heat after specified time periods. This is the perfect earth friendly cooker.
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