Dessert Cooking Offers Cultural Experience


Amanda Young, Business Editor

To celebrate the Chinese Lantern Festival and the end of Chinese New Year, Sabrina Wun’s Mandarin 1, 2, and 3 classes made traditional “tongyuan” desserts in the cafeteria on February 20.

Making the dessert, which includes ingredients like glutinous rice flour and sweet red beans, required students to bring in frozen balls of the bean paste before coating them with flour and boiling them.

Wun believes that celebrating holidays helps students gain a deeper understanding of the culture. “Holidays or festivals are always the most [well-known part of the] culture for each country,” she said.

Sophomore Delu Zhao said the project “helped [them] enjoy the Chinese culture” because it was “interactive.”

According to Wun, cooking the dessert as a class replicated a traditional Chinese celebration and family reunion because preparing the food together serves to unite family members. “It’s a family gathering event, so people get together to make food and chat,” said Wun.

Despite some hiccups with the glutinous flour dough, the desserts “turned out beautifully,” said sophomore Natalie Ung.

The event offered a break from the daily classroom routine, which freshman April Mao enjoyed. “It’s a lot of fun and it’s more of a hands-on activity,” she said.