I made several efforts to make 2015 a more fruitful and rewarding year than the previous one – I went to Pink Sister’s Convent at Tagaytay, wore something red on my first day at work, and even ate a significant amount of round fruits and sticky rice cakes on New Year’s eve (at the expense of my New Year’s resolution). In one of my earlier posts, I’ve also told you that part of my efforts was enjoying the Yúshēng (余升) aka The Prosperity Toss Salad, which we happily gobbled up at the BGC branch of Crystal Jade Dining In.
The Yúshēng is primarily enjoyed by Chinese communities living in Malaysia and Singapore. It is believed to usher in prosperity and wealth which is why it is usually served on Chinese New Year, and is popular among businessmen. Apparently, its charm has made its way even to yuppies like me who are always on the lookout for a prosperous year ahead!
The Yúshēng is also known the Prosperity Toss Salad because you have to toss and mix up the colorful ingredients before you eat them. I was told that the higher the toss, the stronger the good luck so it’s fine be all out with those chopsticks without having to worry about the mess.
However, there’s a sophisticated ritual that you need to follow to maximize the prosperity brought by this special dish. Each of the ingredients in the dish was carefully selected and has an auspicious meaning behind it. As the dish is served to you, the waiter or waitress, would say something as part of the ritual.
I present to you:
12 steps to Lo Hei
1. Everyone at the table offers New Year greetings.
恭喜发财 (Gong Xi Fa Cai) meaning “Congratulations for your wealth”
万事如意(Wan Shi Ru Yi) meaning “May all your wishes be fulfilled”
2. The raw fish is added, symbolizing abundance and excess through the year.
年年有余(Nian Nian You Yu) meaning “Abundance through the year”
3. The pomelo or lime is added to the fish, adding luck and auspicious value.
大吉大利(Da Ji Da Li) meaning “Good luck and smooth sailing”
4. Pepper is then dashed over the ingredients in the hope of attracting more money and valuables.
招財進寶(Zhao Cai Jin Bao) meaning “Attract wealth and treasures”
5. Then oil is poured out, circling the ingredients and encouraging money to follow in from all directions.
一本万利(Yi Ben Wan Li) meaning “Make 10,000 times of profit with your capital”
财源广进(Cai Yuan Guang Jin) meaning “Numerous sources of wealth”
6. Carrots are added to the fish indicating blessings of good luck.
鸿运当头(Hong Yun Dang Tou) meaning “Good luck is approaching”.
Carrot (红萝卜) is used as the first character 鸿also sound like the Chinese character for red.
7. Then the shredded green radish is placed on the fish symbolizing eternal youth.
青春常住(Qing Chun Chan Zhu) meaning “Forever young”.
Green radish is used as the first character 青also sound like the Chinese character for green.
8. After which the shredded white radish is added – prosperity in business and promotion at work.
風生水起(Feng Sheng Shui Qu) meaning “Progress at a fast pace”
歩歩高升(Bu Bu Gao Sheng) meaning “Reaching higher level with each step”
9. The condiments are finally added. First, peanut crumbs are dusted on the dish symbolizing a household filled with gold and silver.
金银满屋 (Jin Yin Man Wu) meaning “Household filled with gold and silver”
10. Sesame seeds quickly follow symbolizing a flourish business.
生意兴隆 (Sheng Yi Xing Long) meaning “Prosperity for the business”
11. Deep-fried flour crisps in the shape of golden pillows is then added with wishes that literally the whole floor would be filled with gold.
满地黄金(Man Di Huang Jin) meaning “Floor full of gold”
12. All toss the salad 7 times with loud shouts of Lo Hei and other New Year wishes. (Lo Hei which means to “to rise”, in reference to a rising or thriving business.).
After making a beautiful mess of the dish that was served to us, I started gobbling up the greens. It would seem that the Yúshēng tasted as good as the luck that it brings! The colorful ingredients went well with each other, especially when I poured a generous amount of apple sauce and soya oil on my dish. It’s also healthy so it having this dish should be good for my well-being too!
The Yúshēng is available only this Chinese New Year so mark your (Chinese?) calendars!
Crystal Jade Dining IN
Address: SEUG201, Bonifacio High Street Central, 7th Ave., Bonifacio Global City, Taguig City
Contact Number: (02) 808 – 5233