Hello everyone, my name is Zongzi.
Usually, you can only find me around June,
a Chinese festival called Duan Wu (Dragon Boat Festival),
and I am always easy to spot because of my jacket.
It is green, made of bamboo leaves.
And the shape is very unique.
It’s a triangle.
With a good texture,
neither too thick nor thin,
perfect for the season.
And it smells great too.
A pleasant cocoa aroma.
Bringing out all the freshness,
that makes me feel so in touch with my dear earth.
I am a girl, obviously,
so my taste is sweet.
People like to put Chinese dates and sticky rice in me.
Some of my other sisters have red beans inside.
While my brothers are savoury.
Because they have pork belly with dark soy sauce and other spices.
Did you know,
sometimes I find people crazy about my brothers because they are meat lovers.
But, I don’t feel jealous,
Well, everyone has different tastes.
They are out of my control.
However, you might wonder,
why do I wear a jacket and always appear only for a short period of time, unlike other foods?
Is it because I am too shy to see people?
Of course not.
I love people!
There’s an old story behind my creation.
I actually was born over 2,000 years ago.
Can’t you believe it?
I know I know,
I don’t look old at all.
I think a youthful and unstoppable curious and learning heart does make a difference.
Back to the legend.
There was a famous poet and minister of the state of Chu called Qu Yuan in 3 BC.
One day he was slandered by his enemies and sent into exile.
In 278 BC, Qu Yuan heard his country had been defeated by the Qin State,
He was so desperate that he drowned himself in the Miluo River.
Locals were so sad and they rowed out on the river to search for his body in a rush, but they couldn’t find him.
In order to keep fish and evil spirits away from his body, the villagers created me.
By doing that, I as a rice ball wouldn’t be eaten by dragons,
and fish could eat me and my siblings instead of Qu Yuan’s body.
This tradition has then been passed on for thousands of years. What a beautiful act!
Ah, I am so proud of my origin.
I know the festival, the 5th of May in the Lunar calendar, has already passed this year.
But don’t worry,
Mark the date down,
so you can come to say hi to me next year!
XQZ 26th June ’23