At Viet Duong’s home in Houston, after everyone’s stomachs filled with curry and caramelized tofu at a New Year’s Eve party, they turned to something else: fruit.
In addition to oranges and apples, they often have dragon fruit and star fruit, which are believed to bring good luck. Mr. Duong, 36 years old, a medical worker, said that he always cut fruit and put it in the refrigerator to be ready to serve right after the main meal.
“Never cake or ice cream,” he said, but “always chopped fruit.”
Linda Trinh Vo, a professor of Asian American studies at the University of California, Irvine, says fruit is the “language of love” during the Lunar New Year, and it can be given in many ways. Some families grow their own tangerines or kumquats as gifts, while others give roots or seeds from fruit trees in their yard. You can also buy fruit in neatly packaged gift boxes at the grocery store.
“In many Asian and American cultures, it’s hard to say, ‘I love you,'” she said, “so they do it through serving these special delicacies.”
Randy Su, 22, of Toronto, studying for a master’s degree in teaching, says that whether wrapped in a box or sliced on a plate, fruit is seen as a silent gesture of love in many Asian cultures.
At Mr. Su’s house during the Lunar New Year, his parents serve platters of cut fruit “like a party tray” to guests, he said.
Fruit, he said, is “an expression of hospitality,” but is also a way to show guests that “they’re thinking about you, care about you, and love you.”
https://www.nytimes.com/2022/01/29/us/lunar-new-year-cut-fruit.html It is the Lunar New Year. Get ready for some fruit.