PHNOM PENH: The upcoming Chinese New Year will officially begin on Sunday, 22 January 2023. Chinese New Year offerings made to ancestors are something that Cambodians of Chinese descent should know and prepare in advance for.
Chinese Master, Se Kok Long, spoke with EAC News and detailed some of the preparations people make prior to the Chinese New Year, such as cleaning and tidying up the home. Cambodians of Chinese descent typically prepare pork, chicken, duck and duck eggs painted red, noodles, rice, cakes, candy and orange juice as food offerings.
If people cannot afford to sacrifice pigs, chickens or ducks, they can also offer sour fish instead.
The 73-year-old Chinese master particularly highlighted that people must not forget to include fruits in their offerings.
Additionally, he advised that people should avoid offering things like dried squid, dried shrimp, lobster and crab, and for fruits, to avoid offering guava, durian and any other fruits that have sharp peels.
The Chinese Master continued that offerings at home should include five kinds of fruits – three offered for ancestors, one placed in the kitchen shrine and one placed in the spirit house.
Furthermore, descendants of Chinese lineage must light five incense sticks in the house shrine with five glasses of tea and five glasses of white wine, while for the shrine honoring ancestors, they must light three incense sticks and offer three glasses of tea and three glasses of wine. The kitchen shrine should also have one incense stick and three cups of tea and wine as well.
According to Master Kok Long, Chinese New Year day is when all relatives gather together at home and do not travel outside. The second day of the Chinese New Year is when families can leave their homes to visit relatives who are busy with work and business. Finally, on the third day is when people can travel as normal.