The Winter Solstice Festival or more commonly known as the "Tong Yun" festival is celebrated every year on December 22nd. This year marks the 2nd year that we are celebrating this unique festival. Bear with me beacuse I am really not sure what this festival signifies but I will try to explain.
The significance if this festival mainly is that when we eat the Tong Yun - we grow older by a year. Why the rounded balls then? The roundness of a ball signifies that a family coming full circle and united I think. Normally, the whole family with gather around and have dinner together on this festival. If anyone knows more of this festival - please leave a comment here for me. Thanks ladies.
I went to the market early to buy the ready made dough for the tong yun. In olden days, the people make the glutinous rice flour themselves by grinding the flour through an old stone grinder. It was difficult and meticulous work. Thereafter, the flour is mixed with water and colouring and then boiled in water to cook it. A separate syrup is made out of sugar cane and water and it is added prior to serving the tong yun.
We are Malaysians after all, so a malaysian version of the tong yun would be:
1) I added gula melaka inside each dumpling as I prefer a sweeter taste
2) I boiled my syrup with pandan leaves.
I really hope to understand more of this festival cos I really want to understand my chinese culture and share it with everyone. Hope you enjoy this post. To all my chinese friends, Happy Tong Yun Day!
P.S. We stuffed M &Ms into the dumplings last year - hmmm, must say that the taste was not fantastic.