How This Ancient Korean Dessert Is Making a Comeback

Tteok, bingsu, danpatjuk, soboro-ppang, freshly cut fruit—all things that come to mind when many think of quintessentially Korean desserts. And they’re not wrong, but something’s missing here.

Hangwa (한과) describes any dainty confection made by kneadi…

Tteok, bingsu, danpatjuk, soboro-ppang, freshly cut fruit—all things that come to mind when many think of quintessentially Korean desserts. And they're not wrong, but something’s missing here.

Hangwa (한과) describes any dainty confection made by kneading a grain or grain flour with a sweetener (honey, rice syrup, sugar, or some combination). They’re steamed or fried, then oftentimes coated in a hodgepodge of dried fruit, seeds, and nuts. Tasty as they are, they’re not always easy to find.

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13 Lunar New Year Dessert Recipes to Devour

Whether you follow traditions from the Chinese, Korean, Vietnamese, Japanese—or another East or Southeast Asian—perspective, when it comes to Lunar New Year celebrations, you simply can’t skip dessert.

“The biggest holiday of the year, Chinese New Yea…

Whether you follow traditions from the Chinese, Korean, Vietnamese, Japanese—or another East or Southeast Asian—perspective, when it comes to Lunar New Year celebrations, you simply can’t skip dessert.

“The biggest holiday of the year, Chinese New Year, is the time when families reunite, cook a large feast, and admire a new year’s moon,” writes Kristina Cho in her cookbook Mooncakes & Milk Bread. “We enjoy my pau pau’s steamed cakes, their tops bursting to signify the luck and prosperity you hope for in the year ahead.” To hear a bit more about Cho’s work, stay tuned for an upcoming episode of Genius Recipes Tapes podcast (even better, make a batch of the steamed cakes while you listen).

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Celebrating a Lunar New Year Rooted in Togetherness—& Food

In 2022, Lunar New Year will begin on February 1. For My Shanghai author Betty Liu, it’s a joyful celebration filled with family gatherings and edible treats. Most of these foods enjoyed during Lunar New Year in China, from egg dumplings to tatsoi to s…

In 2022, Lunar New Year will begin on February 1. For My Shanghai author Betty Liu, it's a joyful celebration filled with family gatherings and edible treats. Most of these foods enjoyed during Lunar New Year in China, from egg dumplings to tatsoi to sticky rice cakes, are eaten to symbolize various well-wishes for the coming year. In this excerpt, Liu shares some of those Lunar New Year foods and their meanings.


As a child, Lunar New Year meant family gatherings, the hustle and bustle of preparations for a delicious feast, and 红包 hong bao, “red envelopes filled with monetary gifts.” I didn’t think about it much beyond that, but as I grew older, having spent some of these holidays away from family, I began to appreciate how much this holiday was rooted in togetherness.

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At the Heart of This Lunar New Year, a Different Kind of Magic

The Lunar New Year falls on Jan. 25 this year. It’s a momentous occasion celebrated by millions around the world, and we reached out to some of our friends to see how they’d be ushering in the Year of the Rat. Eunice Byun and David Nguyen are the food-…

The Lunar New Year falls on Jan. 25 this year. It's a momentous occasion celebrated by millions around the world, and we reached out to some of our friends to see how they'd be ushering in the Year of the Rat. Eunice Byun and David Nguyen are the food-loving co-founders of Material, a thoughtful kitchenware brand that always keeps the home cook (like us!) in mind. See how they honor their respective Korean and Vietnamese cultures during this special time of year.


Eunice on Korean New Year, or Seollal

There is, for me, no better way of ringing in another year than with family and good food. This is the very reason why Korean New Year (or seollal) is one of my favorite holidays. From the communal meal prep to the ceremonial bowing to elders (sehbeh) to the lively game of yutnori (where sticks are thrown in the air like a game of dice—and trust me, it gets rowdy with my family), I love the sense of togetherness and tradition that comes with every Lunar New Year’s gathering.

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