Hi everybody, 大家好, 欢迎收看今天的成长汉语. Thanks for joining us for today’s episode of Growing up with Chinese.
Now the holiday has finally arrived. It’s new year’s eve, and everyone has gathered at 小明’s house to celebrate. So what is a traditional Chinese new year celebration like? Well, let’s check in with our gang, and find out.
Mike：啊？ 这也能当饺子馅儿？ 这能吃吗？
小明’s mom said 过去老人常说, 冬天吃了饺子, 耳朵就不容易被冻伤. 冻 is to freeze and 伤 is to injure, hurt or wound. So I guess if you eat dumplings in the winter, so they say anyway, they’re supposed to help keep your ears from being hurt by the cold. So it’s really no wonder that dumplings is such a popular food in northern China because it gets really cold during the winter.
All right, 小明’s uncle mentioned a kind of soup today when he said 今晚大家就只能喝面汤了. 面汤. Now, literally translated, 面汤 means flour soup. Now when people boiled dumplings or noodles for that matter in China, the water that is left over in the pot is referred to as 面汤. It doesn’t have a crazy amount of flavor, but the flour that’s cooked into the water makes it a very nice soothing*3 drink. Now many times when you are in a noodle house or a dumpling restaurant, they’ll pour you a glass or a bowl of 面汤 as a drink. It’s quite comforting and very good.
So, 小明 explained today why they put a few special items in a handful of dumplings? 如果你吃到了糖, 你明年会甜甜蜜蜜. 如果吃到了硬币, 你明年就会发大财. Now candy sweet, right? So if you get the dumpling with the candy in it, your upcoming year will be full of sweetness 甜甜蜜蜜. If you get a coin or 硬币 in your dumpling, you will become rich. 发财 or 发大财 in the upcoming year. Now I think getting to eat both a coin and the candy would be best of all.
All right everyone let’s take a few minutes to go over some of today’s vocabulary.
- 耳朵 ears. ěr duo
- 农历 Chinese agricultural calendar. nóng lì
- 放鞭炮 to set off fireworks or firecrackers. fàng biān pào
- 压岁钱 this specifically refers to money given to children as a lunar new year gift. yā suì qián
I’m sure many of you have had Chinese dumplings or 饺子 before. And if you haven’t, you should try them. They’re very tasty and they come in all kinds of flavors. Now the most common fillings for 饺子 are a combination of meat and vegetables, although you can find vegetarian or seafood 饺子 as well.
The process of making them, as you all saw in today’s clip, is a group affair. And it’s always fun to partake *4 in the making.
Now some people can make them faster than a machine could. And others, like myself, tend to be a little slower, but that’s OK.
So, why is it important to eat 饺子 on Chinese New Year? Well, some people say they look like the golden ingots that were used during the 明 dynasty. So serving them and eating them is supposed to bring you wealth in the new year.
Some families have the tradition of hiding a peanut or some kind of noticeable food inside a few dumplings or a candy or coin like we saw in today’s dialogue. And whoever eats these special dumplings will have extra special luck in the new year.
It’s time to take a look at today’s language points and to begin with we have a pattern: verb 来 verb 去.
Now our verb in this pattern should be monosyllabic and the pattern expresses repetition of an action. So, 跑来跑去. To run around continuously. 看来看去. To look around again and again. 想来想去. To think about something continuously.
We’ve got a colloquialism next, 你还别说. 你还别说 is used to express an opinion. And this opinion could differ slightly from what you thought before or from what other people might think. For example I could say 你还别说, 烤鸭还真好吃. You know, roast duck is actually quite delicious. So the implication here is that before perhaps I thought roast duck wasn’t so good or maybe someone told me it wasn’t good. But, it’s actually pretty good.
- 你还别说，我觉得写中文比说中文更有意思。／是吗？ 很多人都觉得汉字太难写了。
And finally let’s take a look at 这叫什么 something 啊? OK, this pattern is used to express a complete disapproval or rejection of something. So typically what comes between 这叫什么 and 啊 is a noun. So today 小明’s dad said to 小明 “你包得这叫什么饺子啊?” Can what you’ve made really be called a dumpling? Or can this really be considered a dumpling? In other words, it doesn’t resemble a dumpling at all. OK so another example of this pattern could be 这叫什么蛋糕啊? 一点儿蛋糕的味道都没有. Can this be called a cake? Is this really a cake? It doesn’t have even the slightest bit of a cake’s flavor.
好了, 我们今天剩的时间不多了. We’ve just about run out of time for today. Now I hope you all enjoyed experiencing Chinese New Year’s eve, there is nothing quite like it.
Now don’t forget you can always visit our website if you want to review anything or watch today’s episode again. And while you are there, please feel free to leave us any comments or send in any questions you might have. It’s always good to hear from you. OK, I will see you all next time. 大家, 加油,下次见.