Lohei / Yusheng Rituals and Meanings

Rituals and Meanings

Yu-Sheng

The tradition of Yu Sheng or Lo Hei originated from the phrase’s Cantonese meaning of ‘tossing up good fortune’ using raw fish salad which symbolises an ‘abundance of wealth and long life’. Made up of white and green radish, carrots, capsicum, turnips, red pickled ginger, slices of raw fish (commonly salmon), crackers, topped with fragrant dressing of plum sauce, five spice powder, sesame oil, this dish is usually served as an appetiser.

Gather your families and friends to toss the ingredients while saying auspicious well wishes out loud to usher in good luck. It is also believed the higher you toss the ingredients in the salad, the greater your fortunes will be.

To help you with the appropriate Chinese New Year auspicious phrases during Lo Hei

Step 1: All at the table & ready to begin
Words:
恭喜发财
Gong xi fa cai
Congratulations for your wealth
or
万事如意
Wan shi ru yi

May all your wishes be fulfilled

Step 2: Raw Fish
Words:
年年有余
Nian nian you yu
Abundance throughout the year

Step 3: The pomelo or lime
Words:
大吉大利
Da ji da li
Good luck and great prosperity

Step 4: Pepper & Cinnamon Powder
Words:
招财进宝
Zhao cai jin bao
Attract wealth and treasures

Step 5: Pour Oil circling the ingredients and encouraging money to flow in from all directions
Words:
一本万利
Yi ben wan li
Make 10,000 fold of profit with your capital
or
财原广进
Cai yuan guang jin
Attract wealth and treasures

Step 6: Shredded Carrots
Words:
鸿运当头
Hong yun dang tou
Good luck is approaching

Step 7: Shredded Green radish
Words:
青春常驻
Qing chun chang zhu
Forever young

Step 8: Shredded white radish
Words:
风生水起
Feng sheng shui qi
Progress at a fast pace
or
步步高升
Bu Bu gao sheng
Reaching higher level with each step

The condiments are finally added

Step 9: Chopped Peanut bits
Words:
金银满屋
Jin yin man wu
Household filled with gold and silver

Step 10: Sesame seeds
Words:
生意兴隆
Sheng yi xing long
Prosperity for the business

Step 11: Plum Sauce
Words:
甜甜蜜蜜
Tian tian mi mi
May life always be sweet

Step 12: Deep-fried flour crisps
Words:
满地黄金
Man di huang jin
Floor full of gold

Step 13:
The ingredients are mixed by pushing them toward the centre, an encouragement to push on the good luck of all at the table. All toss the salad with loud shouts of “lo hei” 捞起 and other auspicious New Year wishes.

If you can’t finish the salad, don’t worry, as usually a small amount is left behind to signify abundance.

Yu-Sheng 2

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