Five-color bouyei sticky rice

Added On February 25, 2015

Different regions in China have different customs of Spring Festival celebration.
In southwestern Guizhou Province, people of the Bouyei ethnic group make five-color sticky rice to pray for good fortune and a bumper harvest in the new year.
Nanlong Village is a typical Bouyei village in Guizhou with a history of nearly 600 years. 
The village, built around mountains, has more than 200 households.
To celebrate Chinese Lunar New Year, Bouyei people cook five-color sticky rice: black, red, purple, yellow and white.
Song Chunmei, a local Bouyei woman good at making the traditional cuisine, said the colorful rice is good for health.
SOUNDBITE (CHINESE): SONG CHUNMEI, Five-color sticky rice maker
"The colorful sticky rice is good for health. Black rice nurtures spleen and stomach; red rice protects heart; purple rice is good for liver; yellow and white rice - for eyes and lungs".
Song said the sticky rice must be carefully prepared. She often goes to mountains to collect leaves and herbs as dye materials. 
She chooses high-quality glutinous rice and colors it with maple leaves for black, sapanwoods for red, comfreys for purple, and daylily flowers for yellow.
"The colorful sticky rice is dyed with pure natural materials. We are quite reassured. Now people pursue such healthy and environmental-friendly food. The colorful rice is alluring. It's a local specialty and reminds me of hometown and family".
The dish has five layers of colors, representing Bouyei people's respect for ancestors and gratitude for the Nature.
The black rice at the bottom means earth; purple and red at the second the third layer signal sun; yellow is nature and white at the top is sky. 
SOUNDBITE (CHINESE): SONG CHUNMEI, Five-color sticky rice maker
"We prepared the colorful sticky rice for relatives and friends during Spring Festivals. And it's also popular in the market in recent years. Many guests have ordered our food and I'm very busy cooking rice these days".
"The village is filled with ethnic culture atmosphere. Bouyei people are hospitable to guests. I've bought some sticky rice. It's delicious and looks good. The place is full of fun."