Symbolic food plays an important part in Chinese New Year, with nian gao (pudding) being one of the most popular foods. With a name that sounds like "higher year" in Chinese, nian gao is a must if you're wishing someone a prosperous year ahead.
Whether you're preparing for a slew of family gatherings or simply want to treat yourself to some lucky foods, check out our top five Chinese New Year treats from around Hong Kong:
1. Mandarin Oriental's Luxe Hamper
Send your heartfelt Chinese New Year wishes in a basket of goodies -- the Mandarin Oriental Cake Shop offers some luxurious hampers that are sure to impress. The traditional Chinese hamper is priced at HK$2,288 and contains X.O. sauce, glutinous rice cake, Chinese cookies, Taste of the Legend tea, caramelised walnuts, lai see packets and chocolates.
2. The Kowloon Hotel's Turnip Cake
A Chinese New Year feast is never complete without pudding, and the scrumptious turnip cakes (HK$188 per box) prepared by Michelin-starred head chefs at Loong Yat Heen are delicious steamed or pan-fried. To satisfy your sweet tooth, try their coconut pudding (HK$118 per box) made with fresh coconut milk and brown sugar. All ingredients are preservative-free to help you kick start a healthy year.
Loong Yat Heen, 2/F, The Kowloon Hotel, 19-21 Nathan Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, +852 2734 3722, www.harbour-plaza.com/theKowloon
3. Shanghai Min's Festive Pudding
Embracing the traditional art of festive pastry-making, Shanghai Min has sculpted Chinese New Year puddings into a pair of carp which symbolise good fortunes. These Shanghai New Year Puddings are made with Chinese liquor Wu Liang Ye and osmanthus honey packed in a deluxe pink box and ready to send to friends and business associates. Price starts at HK$151, discounted to HK$133 for orders of 10 boxes or more.
4. Island Shangri-La's Gift Hampers
Spoil your family and friends with the gourmet hampers from Island Shangri-La. The Jade Hamper (HK$2,288) is a combination of quintessential Chinese New Year food including puddings, porcini mushrooms, abalone, X.O. sauce, together with chocolate bars, Chinese cookies and roasted almonds to cater to those with a sweet tooth. The hamper also includes a bottle of Moët & Chandon Champagne.
Level 5, Island Shangri-La, Pacific Place, Supreme Court Road, 88 Queensway, Hong Kong, +852 2820 8550, www.shangri-la.com
5. Yat Tung Heen's Sweet Puddings
Not a fan of savoury turnip or taro cake? The auspicious homemade sweet cakes (HK$118 per box) introduced by Michelin-starred Yat Tung Heen will surely delight your taste buds. The Red Bean Pudding with Kwai Fa (osmanthus) has a delicate scent of flowery aroma, best served cold as a favourable dessert after dinner. The chestnut pudding is packed with cruchy chestnut bites, fibres and antioxidants, which is a lady's best pick.
Yat Tung Heen, 380 Nathan Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon, +852 2782 1818, hongkong.eatonhotels.com