Why is boiled chicken an indispensable dish on the traditional Vietnamese New Year’s feast?

Have you ever wondered why the Vietnamese dining table is never complete without the presence of boiled chicken? Let's delve into the reasons behind this culinary tradition!


Why is boiled chicken an essential dish in the Tet feast?

According to Vietnamese folklore, boiled chicken is always included in the traditional Tet feast. Especially during important occasions like festivals and Tet, boiled chicken is never missing from the table.

Boiled chicken is particularly significant during Tet because it is an offering. The Tet feast is a way to remember ancestors and seek the blessings of spirits for the living. It is a continuation of the beautiful traditions left by our ancestors. That’s why the saying goes, “Every feast must have chicken.” It is a thousand-year-old cultural feature of our people.

While there are many more delicious dishes in modern life, boiled chicken is still an indispensable dish on the Tet feast.

Why do Vietnamese people specifically choose roosters for the Tet feast?

According to cultural experts, since ancient times, roosters have been considered sacred animals in many belief systems and worship rituals as sacrificial offerings. Especially for an agricultural country like Vietnam, the image of a rooster is even more familiar for various reasons. Chickens have been domesticated by humans since ancient times.

During Tet, it is a tradition to offer a rooster that habitually crows in the morning, its crowing echoing far and wide, serving as a wake-up call for the community. It becomes a sign that reminds people of the passage of time. Chickens are also close companions of each individual.

Especially with the tradition of offering boiled chicken during Tet, it may also stem from a folklore tale that recounts how Ngoc Hoang (the Jade Emperor) found the earth cold and damp, which led to the decision to have ten suns shine day and night. Therefore, the image of a rooster became a symbol of folk culture, especially for our agricultural country.

Tips for choosing good ritual chicken

When choosing a ritual chicken, it is advisable to select young roosters that have just reached maturity for the best result when boiling. These chickens will not become tough or dry after boiling. Additionally, from a feng shui perspective, young roosters are the best choice to wake up the sun, symbolizing a year of abundant rain and favorable wind.

The information provided is for reference and contemplation purposes.

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Should boiled chicken be chopped or kept whole in the refrigerator?

There is a common belief that leftover boiled chicken can simply be stored in the refrigerator and consumed gradually over time. However, if not properly preserved, the chicken will quickly turn bad.