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Nothing brings together a family like food, and the Chinese are well aware of that, which is why when it comes to a celebration of family unity like the Moon Festival, there is no shortage of festive foodstuffs to celebrate it. Pomelo fruits are one of the Moon Festival’s festive foods, read on to find out why are Pomelo fruits eaten during moon festival.
Because of its round shape and its sweet taste, the pomelo is one of the primary festive foods of the mid-autumn moon festival. It is considered as a lucky fruit by the Chinese.
Harvested during the Mid-Autumn Festival, this huge citrus fruit is usually eaten with mooncakes and other delicacies and is considered to be one of the Moon Goddess’ favourite fruit. With a sweet and sour taste like a mild sweet grapefruit, the pomelo is also used as garnishings while its skin is used as an ingredient in some varieties of Southern Chinese cooking.
In Mandarin, pomelos are called “you zi”, a homophone for words that mean “prayer for a son.” Therefore, it is believed that eating pomelos and putting their rinds on the head signifies a prayer for the youth in the family as the moon goddess Chang’e will see them and respond to their prayers when she looks down from the moon.
When the full moon rises on Mid-Autumn Festival night, some of the more traditional Chinese families are known to place mooncakes, peanuts, and pomelos on the altar and offer it to the moon goddess.
In the Meizhou province, the pomelo is an essential festive food, that is consumed in different varieties including golden pomelo (Shatian pomelo), honey pomelo or Shuijing pomelo. It is believed that eating pomelos by cutting it in a certain manner called “sha you” (killing the pomelo) and peeling the skin is known to ward off negative energy and keep the evil spirits away.