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About this recipe: This recipe is handed down from my mum's mum. This is NOT a dessert (not sweet), but more like a 'quick bread' for the Chinese. This 'cake' is usually made and eaten during the Chinese New Year or its slices are usually found all year round as dim sum in Chinese restaurants. This cake can be kept for 1 week in the fridge (but usually it's finished within a day!!)
You can chill it in the fridge, but it should always be eaten HOT after re-heating either in the microwave, or frying in a few tablespoons of oil.
Most of the dishes served during Chinese New Year are symbolic of something positive and hopeful.
Chicken and fish, for example, symbolise happiness and prosperity - especially when served whole.
Dishes made with oranges represent wealth and good fortune because they are China's most plentiful fruit.
Noodles represent longevity: therefore, they should never be cut!
Duck symbolises fidelity, while eggs signify fertility.
Bean curd or tofu, however, is avoided because its white colour suggests death and misfortune.
Turnips are cooked because their name (cai tou) also means "good luck".