Chinese Birthday Culture

On my Chinese birthdays, my mum usually celebrates for me in a simple way. That is by cooking me a bowl of mee sua with two eggs.

The celebration of birthdays in Chinese culture is quite different from the way it is celebrated in Western culture.


red-dyed eggs

The Chinese believes that a baby's birthday falls on the day he is conceived. Hence, the day he is born is the day he turns one year old.


vermicelli
(mee sua) which signified longevity

herbal soup ingredients, pat chan


the herbal soup boiled with chicken


the mee sua with the herbal soup and eggs


my bowl of mee sua!

A very important practice for the Chinese is that for every birthday, an additional year is added to the birthday person.

Say he/she is celebrating his/her 10th birthday. For the Chinese, it would be his/her 11th birthday instead.

They believe that this would ensure the birthday person would live through the year and see the next.

Comments

  1. Hi Wenn, I love this old tradition. And my wife does it for me every year...
    And 3 red eggs and the mee sua sure taste good....
    but I will take a pass on the herbal soup, ha ha.
    She sometimes use Quail eggs....then it 6 in my tummy.
    Have a nice holiday, Lee.

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  2. mi-suah is what we had for breakfast on the first and second day of CNY. we usually have it with a boiled egg, chicken drumstick, fish maw and fish balls.

    i don't take pat chan. it's too heaty for me.

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  3. Nice. I had 2 red-dyed eggs for my birthday every year =)...

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  4. glass noodles too resembles longevity.

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  5. Happy Chinese Holiday! LOL :D Hmm....the weird thing is I never celebrate my Chinese Birthday! :)

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  6. Yeah! Usually we eat mee sua and red egg right? But yours is so special! There is herbal soup? My...I wish someone can cook for me during my Chinese Birthday! :)

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  7. And there's even mushroom! Gosh must be so finger-licking good right Wenn! :) I'm drooling already!

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  8. Happy birthday! Are you a foochow? I thought, normally pak chan is taken by foochow. My children don't like it although I like it very much!

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  9. wow, i miss mee sua very much! are you a foochow? haha...it has been a while since i last tasted the pak chan already. really miss it...thanks for sharing!

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  10. I do not follow this culture & I never eat vermicelli on my birthdays. Your bowl of meesua looks like the confinement food, hehehe...

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  11. Wah... I love mee sua. I still not yet have my breakfast. Drooling now! LOL!

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  12. hi Wenn, red eggs and mee sua? yeah, just saw those in stp blog too, he doing it for his daughter lately..
    as for me, i never did those for my kids.. lazy mama... all i did was taking them out for makan and buying a cake for them.. so commercialized! yes, good to keep the traditions going.. this is real chinese culture!

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  13. I don't follow this custom but it's fun to see other people doing it :)

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  14. I still maintain this tradition in my house. Although my son prefers blowing out birthday candles. :P

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  15. hmm..i never had that in my birthday... is that hokkien tradition?

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  16. oh.. i love mee shua....
    and the egg...

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  17. Mee sua is not my favourite but my wife loves it

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  18. My mum would normally cook clear soup mi sua with 2 eggs. I guess pat chan is for ladies only?

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  19. i'm hokkien..it's been a tradition..my mum is fantastic..she remembers all of my sibling' n my children' chinese birthdays..

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  20. Your mee sua picture makes me feel like having birthday everyday. Yummy!

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  21. Herbal soup with mee sua??? we usually cook "lam mee" and red eggs for birthday :)

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  22. well, as long as the noodles is long and it usually goes with red-dyed eggs..

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  23. We usually have red eggs and longevity noodles (fried/ soup) during birthdays. No pat zhan though.

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  24. Yummm.... I want to start this tradition in my family now. My kids are all 'banana'. Yah, not good, i kow. So... next birthday is in Nov - for my 2 girls!!

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  25. My mum only remembers my chinese birthday and yes, she'll boiled me a red-dyed egg. No mee sua and pat chan though.

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  26. ya..it's chinese tradition..should at least know the simple ones..

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  27. I fail to remember my Chinese Birthday and my mom will remind me every year. I remember eating these eggs and mee sua when I was younger.

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  28. i wrote the chinese date behind the birth cert of my children so that they know.

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  29. we also celebrate it with noodles usual bee hun for long life too.

    i also cook misua but i prefer it white in sauce or soup, not too fond of black soup for noodles =P

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  30. usually my mum cooks it with chee yok soup but that day she cooked it black..

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  31. This is really something I'd love to try, coz I want to taste always something new esp. Asian cuisine. This is really perfect for Cultural Connections. Hope you could join wenn.

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  32. I just have 10 red eggs for my birthday! :)

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  33. well..MM..not sure why the difference in number..

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