Archive for January, 2009

Chinese New Year Food in the Philippines

For their celebration of the New Year, the Japanese have their rice cake mochi (餅) and the Koreans have their rice cake teok (떡).

Do you know the Philippine equivalent of the Chinese New Year rice cake nian gao (年糕)?  It’s called tikoy!

How about the most popular fruits to serve and give away during the Lunar New Year season? Remember, the Philippines is a tropical country…

Top 10 Chinese Filipino foods during Lunar New Year celebrations in the Philippines

Happy Chinese New Year of the Earth Ox!


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Chinese New Year in the Philippines

Did you know that the Chinese have been in the Philippines even before the Spaniards came in the 16th century? Chinese Filipinos make up only one to two percent of the Filipino population but those numbers don’t match their influence on the country’s history and culture.

Chinese Filipinos used to be referred to as INTSIK in Tagalog, but that word has sort of become unpopular due to negative connotations that were attached to it. The politically correct term these days is TSINOY (sometimes spelled Chinoy).

With the Lunar New Year being on Monday (January 26, 2009), I decided to make a page on how the holiday is celebrated by the Chinese community in the Philippines.

Traditions during the Chinese New Year in the Philippines

The Chinese-Filipino greeting for the New Year: Kiong Hee Huat Tsai — that’s how Tsinoys pronounce 恭喜發財 (Gong Xi Fa Cai in Mandarin; Gong Hei Fat Choi in Cantonese).

Happy New Year! 恭喜發財,紅包拿來 😉


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Happy Three Kings!

A funny greeting, no?

In the Philippines, January 6 is called Araw ng Tatlong Hari (Day of the Three Kings), after the magi or wise men who visited the Christ child bearing gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh. In Spanish-speaking parts of the world, the three kings are known as Los Reyes Magos de Oriente or Los Tres Reyes Magos. Also known as the Feast of Epiphany, this day marks the end of the twelve days of Christmas. However, in the United States and in English-speaking Christian countries, Epiphany is usually celebrated on the first Sunday of January, which this year was January 4.

Filipinos also recognize this day as Pasko ng Matatanda (Christmas of the Elderly), a day on which to honor senior citizens.

Maligayang Araw ng Tatlong Hari! Happy Three Kings’ Day!


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Tagalog Poems!!! Mga Tula

Recently started a new section on Tagalog Lang for students interested in learning Tagalog poems. Now working on a list of famous Filipino poets and a glossary of poetry terms with English-Tagalog translations.

Visit for more on Philippine literature in Tagalog!

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