If you are one of those party animals who celebrated this New Year taking every time zone into consideration and celebrating remembering friends in different parts of the world and drinking to their health as the world clocks changed to midnight in each country, then you can use the Chinese New Year to celebrate once again. On Monday 23rd January 2012 the Chinese will celebrate their new year and herald in the Year of the Dragon. Now before you get excited and think that I have overnight become as brilliant as Buddy from the Cake Boss and made amazing dragon cupcakes, remember I have a looooong way to go still as far as creativity goes (watch this spot next year though)!
One of the foods that will bring good luck for the Chinese New Year is noodles. Noodles are traditionally eaten in Chinese soups and stir-fries and they represent longevity. When I read this I thought how apt this meaning is for them. My mouth purses as I think of trying to eat long noodles as elegantly as possible (and never really succeeding). I have another way to bring in good luck for the Chinese New Year with noodles and that is with my ‘Oodles of Noodles’ cupcakes. This is a sweet and definitely less messy way of eating your noodles. I iced chocolate cupcakes using a ‘grass’ nozzle which shaped the icing into noodles. My chopsticks are 2 toothpicks.
Chinese lanterns, used in many Chinese celebrations, represent the fears or worries of a person being carried away by the wind. They again are a symbol of good wishes and it is easy to see how they represent good luck as they float away with all our troubles. They are quite beautiful and ethereal in their lightness. In South Africa during our own New Year celebrations hundreds of these lanterns were released into our inky skies in a bid to celebrate New Year in a more environmentally friendly way. Well done to the places that allowed only the release of lanterns in place of the noisy and smokey launching of fireworks! Next time you see a lit lantern floating away on the breeze your heart can feel a little lighter as you wave goodbye to life’s worries. These cupcakes should be knicknamed ‘worry free cupcakes’ then as they have a pretty little Chinese lantern on them. I know that when I am eating these life becomes infinitely sweeter!
Thanks to Disney these lanterns have gained more popularity as we watched Rapunzel’s parents release hundreds of lanterns as a sign of love and hope for their missing daughter in Disney’s ‘ Tangled’.
Lastly and definitely not fierce and fiery at all are the Chinese blossoms that are nature’s representation of the ” ephemeral nature and intensity of life”. My blossoms on these cupcakes then can again remind us of how fragile life is and how we need to treasure it in this year 2012.
I wish you all a year in which you embrace life with the fierce intensity and passion of the dragon, the lightness and grace of the Chinese Lantern and the gentleness and beauty of the Chinese blossom……and I will throw in a few cupcakes of course for sweetness!