Dragon Boat Festival (Duanwu Festival) is a traditional ritual observed in both Vietnamese and East Asia cultures. This day is around the time of Xiazhi (or Haji – the time of the Summer Solstice) when the Sun is nearest to the surface of the Earth (22 June 2023). Xiazhi (midsummer) in Vietnam is also the onslaught of heat, rainfall, humidity, mosquitoes, flies and related summer illness. Nevertheless, Xiazhi brings a myriad of delicious fruits, and among them, is the longan. Dragon Boat Festival in East Asia culture is a celebration for harvest and worshipping ancestors, to show our gratitude to gods and our eagerness to see the bumper autumn harvest. Dragon Boat marks the start of a new farming season in rice cultivation culture. In the early morning of Xiazhi Day, right after waking up, people eat longans, lychees, ash cakes, and sticky rice wine to kill insects and diseases. Longans and these Vietnamese delights are believed to help people get rid off insects and protect the crops during summer.
Grown in many provinces across Vietnam, longan (Dragon eye) is now providing a lifeline for many Vietnamese farmers. Vietnamese longan is now exported to many countries in the world: Japan, USA, Australia, Korea… In Canada, you can find Vietnamese longan at promotional price of 19.82$/kg at any T&T supermarkets: https://www.tntsupermarket.com/eng/search.html?query=longan.
Vietnamese longan, famous for its flavoring and delicious, jelly-like pulp, are Vietnam’s favourite summer fruit. Sweet, succulent, subtle in fragrance, Longan is crowned “Fruit of King”, “Fruit of Longetivity”. In the long list of healthy fruits, longan is famous with numerous attributes: a source of dietary fibers, vitamins and minerals (C, B1, B2, niacin, zinc magnesium, calcium…), digestion support, even a cure for depression! Longan is a natural booster for brain and bones; it helps to moisturize skin, improve sleep quality, keep teeth and eyes healthy, and strengthen heart and blood circulation…
For many years, thanks to the application of VietGAP and GlobalGAP processes, the cultivation of longan in Vietnam is now standardized. Longan cultivation areas in Vietnam are granted specific codes for export. All these areas are monitored to control the cultivation process and to ensure product traceability. Thanks to these efforts, Vietnam’s longans are gradually gaining recognition from international buyers as the best longans in the world.
Let’s celebrate together the Dragon Boat Festival – a convivial time for family gatherings and enjoy Vietnamese Longan – a fruit to enhance traditional values and to tighten family links.
LOTUS SEED SWEET SOUP WITH LONGAN
Lotus seed sweet soup with longan (Che hat sen long nhan) is a delicious Vietnamese summer dessert. It has a pleasant aroma and sweetness, creating a relaxation effect. Sweet soup (chè) is one of the most popular forms of dessert in Vietnam. The lotus seed sweet soup can enjoy hot or cold.
FOR 5 PERSONS:
- Dry lotus seeds: 50 gr (about 100 seeds)
- 50 fresh longans
- 600 ml water
- Sugar: 100 gr (white or rock sugar; to taste)
- Vanilla extracts: 5 drops (to taste)
- Soak dry lotus seeds in water for 1 hour then boil in water for several minutes until soft. Cool the lotus seeds to room temperature.
- Boil 600ml of water with sugar.
- Peel longan and remove longan seed and insert boiled lotus seed (keep the shape of the longan).
- Simmer longan with lotus seed and the extra lotus seeds in the boiled sugar water for 5 minutes.
- Add vanilla extract.
- Chill the longan soup in the fridge or serve with crushed ice.
Vietnam Trade Office in Canada