May 5th (June by solar calender), by Chinese lumar month, marks Dragon Boat Festival, in commemorating the death of Qin Yuan, a poet and statesman during the Warring State period. There were seven states in China then, and there were incessant wars. Chu was a citizen of Chu (340 BC – 238 BC). Eventually the Qin state conquered all, and China was united as one nation by the first emperor under Qin Shi Huang, the tyrant notorious for the construction of The Great Wall of China. The poet, in his disappointment, drowned himself in Hunan River. In memory of him, and the protection of his dead body against devouring by dragons and serpentss in the sea, glutinous rice dumpling (zonzi), were thrown into the river. He wrote good poems. Heavenly Questions or The riddle translated by Roger Water was worthy of reading

Zonzi ( or bah chang by hokkien dialect) are selected glutinous rice, filled with fillings, such as pork belly, shitake mushroom, dried oyster, salted eggs, chestnuts (contents vary according to provinces), wrapped in bamboo leaves and strings, into tetrahedral, rectagular shaped, boiled, and steamed for eating when needed. The taste could be slight salty to pepery, sweet, or mixed, dpending on individul preferences. In the sweet category, there may be filling of sesame, or nutty paste, or just plain, with with coconut-egg jam.

In the web, you could see how they were prepared. I think the best quality still comes from home, rather than restaurants, which are expensive and filled with nonsense, such as abalone and sharkfins. Here are some bah chang my relatives from my relatives.

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