The sun is beating down and it hasn’t rained in days. The riotous din of Chinese songs has started to creep in. You’ve been seeing red. Literally. It’s on clothing, in shops, on the lids of cookie jars. That can only mean the impending arrival of Chinese New Year!
Contrary to what it sounds like, we actually really love Chinese New Year. It is a time for family, reunion, mayhem and merriment. Oh and did we mention the food, glorious food? Lest we forget the unfathomable amount of eating we get to go through this season. Despite being staunch advocates for snacking right and wholesome living, the siren’s call of a buttery pineapple tart can sometimes be too difficult to resist. After all, we each have our favourite New Year’s vice.

Omsanthus

Image from http://www.xiangha.com/

Amy pines for a hearty bowl of sweet osmanthus rice pudding (桂花酒酿) . She’s originally from Shanghai in case you didn’t know.

Pineapple tarts

Image from My Cooking Hut

Ching loves pineapple tarts. She falls prey to their sweet siren song.  

Image from Rasa Malaysia

Sabrina goes mad for chicken floss spring rolls. You really can’t stop at just one...handful.

However, we’ve now realised that things will have to be different this year. Since we’ve started Amazin’ Graze, we’ve embarked on a mission to shift snacking away from empty caloric vessels of processed stuff, to nutrient-rich, organic superfoods. In order to convince our community of the benefits of eating healthily, we ourselves must practice what we preach. Which brings us to Chinese New Year.

Chinese New Year is a flurry of snacks and tidbits filled with refined sugar, saturated fats, colouring and more things than we care to name. We hate to be the bringer of bad news, but news flash: Chinese New Year treats are really not very good for you. We dislike telling others what not to do either. We instead believe that you should be as well-informed as possible in order to make positive life decisions. On that note, let’s work together on easy, manageable steps on how to keep your Chinese New Year snacking under control!

Chocolate

“What do you mean too much chocolate?” (Image from Daily Star.)

THINK ABOUT IT. You may convince yourselves that kuih kapit or ba gua is a once-a-year indulgence. But when was the last time you snacked on some crisps or a candy bar? Probably at your computer at work. Or in front of your TV, marvelling at your new Netflix subscription. Unfortunately, an unhealthy snack by any other name is still an unhealthy snack. Don’t let the festivities form an excuse for you to continue snacking over the holidays. Repeat after us: Empty calories. Empty calories. Empty calories.

Chinese new year snacks

Highway to the danger zone. (Image from Must Share News.)

OUT OF SIGHT OUT OF MIND. The loud red of plastic cookie jar lids may be so to symbolise prosperity during this auspicious time. However, red is also a colour most used to convey danger! Think stop signs and no-entry signs.  Like a brightly coloured tree frog, avoid those cookie jars because their contents are not very good for you. If you find yourself near a cookie jar filled with Chinese New Year temptations, move the jar further away from you, ideally out of sight completely. Life will resume normally, with meaningless snacking successfully avoided.

PORTION CONTROL. If you did not manage to move your snacks far away to safe distance, your second line of defence must be portion control. Instead of eating out of the seemingly bottomless jar of sticky cornflake cookies, take a few out onto a napkin, screw the jar lid tightly back on, and shove the jar away from you as far as possible. Preferably beyond arm’s length.  

 

Product plug alert. We are still in the business of selling wholesome treats after all.

 

SWAP FOR HEALTHY ALTERNATIVES This Chinese New Year, why not do your family and friends a favour by introducing them to an Amazin’ New Year?  Inspired by the symbolism and wordplay that the Chinese attach to fruits and nuts, we have crafted a range of snacks around these prosperous foods. These are limited edition nibbles that we created just for the holidays, because as we said, we really love Chinese New Year.

L-R Prosperity Granola, Golden Fruit Medley, Lucky Nut, Longevity Cookies, Double Happiness Cookies. We also have beautifully packaged gift boxes in two sizes.

Give the gift of abundance here.

So there you have it folks! Curbing excessive snacking is not rocket science, but it might as well be. Drastic lifestyle changes rarely work. Start slowly by making small and achievable updates to your habits. Eventually, you’ll be a real savvy snacker yourself!

 

新年快乐, 猴年大吉!

Amy, Ching & Sabrina