November 2, 2013, Confucius Institute at UCA (UCACI) hosted an activity on Chinese Food Culture: Dumpling at the Faulkner County Library, Conway. This activity was the third and last one in the series activities of Exploring Chinese Culture in collaboration with the Faulkner County Library. Over twenty people from local community participated in the activity.
The first part of the activity was a short introduction on Chinese dumplings given by UCACI Chinese instructor. The first part was about what is dumpling and popular recipes. The second part was about the history of dumplings and when Chinese people make and eat dumplings. The third part was how to make dumplings. UCACI staff demonstrated the process of making dumplings starting from making the dough and filling to folding the wrap. From the introduction and demonstration participants had a basic understanding about Chinese dumplings and how to make them.
The second part was hands-on activity instructed by UCACI staff. Participants were divided into two groups to experience the full procedure of dumpling-making from preparing the dough, rolling the wrap, to folding the wrap and boiling the dumplings. From elementary school children to senior people, participants all took part in wholeheartedly and enjoyed the process of making dumplings. Later, they had a taste of dumplings made by themselves, which they thought to be very delicious. Some participants were quite inquisitive about different styles of folding the wraps as well as combinations of fillings. Some of them even made some extra dumplings to take home, planning to share them with family members or friends.
Careful preparation and enthusiastic participation from local community made this activity a huge success. Many participants expressed their hope to have more activities on Chinese food in the future. At the end of the activity, Mrs. Nancy, staff at Faulkner County Library, said that this Adventure in Chinese Culture activity series opened a window for local people to know China and Chinese people’s life, which also enriched the cultural life of the local community.
UCACI will continue the partnership with the Faulkner County Library to host such activities in the next spring.