Chinese Name: 小寒
English Name: Xiaohan; Minor Cold(Lesser Cold); the 23rd of the 24 Solar Terms
Date: January 4 (5 or 6)
Sun Position: Celestial Longitude of 285°
Xiaohan小寒 is the 23rd of the 24 Solar Terms二十四节气. It begins when the Sun reaches the celestial longitude of 285° and ends when it reaches the longitude of 300°. It more often refers in particular to the day when the Sun is exactly at the celestial longitude of 285°. During the slightly cold season, the direct sunlight is still in the southern hemisphere, and the heat in the northern hemisphere is still dissipating. The heat absorbed during the day is still less than the heat released at night, so the temperature in the northern hemisphere continues to drop.
For most areas of China, it marks the start of the coldest days of the year. Many Chinese sayings use the weather and climate situation during Minor Cold to predict the weather in the following spring.
In the cold season, the direct sunlight is still in the southern hemisphere, and the heat in the northern hemisphere is still dissipating. The heat absorbed during the day is still less than the heat released at night, so the temperature in the northern hemisphere continues to drop.
There are great differences in climate between the north and south regions of my country. According to China’s long-term meteorological records, the minor cold solar term is colder than the major cold solar term in the northern region; but for most of the southern regions, the major cold solar term is colder than the minor cold solar term. But for most areas in the south, the Great Cold solar term is colder than the Minor Cold solar term.
During the Xiaohan, most parts of China have entered a period of severe cold, the soil and the rivers are frozen, and the cold air from the north continues to move south, the weather is cold. Although the southern part of China is not as cold and cold as the northern part, the temperature has also dropped significantly. The coldest time in the south is the minor cold and the major cold and the two periods between the Yushui雨水 and Jingzhe惊蛰.
Health tips in Xiaohan
During the period of Xiaohan, pay attention to keeping warm, you should wear thick jackets, warm shoes, and hats. You can consider soaking your feet before going to bed. This method is conducive to the blood circulation of the feet, keeping the body warm and not freezing, and also conducive to sleep. In terms of diet, you can eat more mutton, beef, sesame seeds, etc., or combine it with Medicated Diet( Foods made with herbs and ingredients) for conditioning.
Tasting Nanjing vegetable rice 品尝南京菜饭
“vegetable rice”, sometimes called “salty rice”, is a kind of folk special food in China. It is a combination of dishes and staple food. It is easy to make and delicious and is well received by the people. The formation and development of vegetable rice were produced by the ancients of our country under the custom of diligence and thrift.
In ancient times, Nanjing people attached great importance to Xiaohan. During the Xiaohan season, they usually use bantam green vegetables and sliced bacon, sausages or diced duck, and then chop some ginger and glutinous rice to cook vegetable rice together, which is very delicious and delicious. Its deliciousness is even comparable to Laba porridge.
Eating Laba porridge 喝腊八粥
Another important traditional food for Minor Cold is Laba porridge. It is made from more than 20 kinds of nuts, cereals and dried fruits. Local people in Beijing often cook Laba porridge on the night of the seventh day of the twelfth lunar month. After one night’s slow-simmering, all the ingredients melt into the porridge in the morning of the eighth day, becoming a warm delicacy to enjoy on cold days. Laba porridge, as a habitual diet of Laba, has its real meaning. When Laba is the coldest day of the year, people’s physique also becomes weaker, and a simple Laba porridge is rich in nutrients, which can enhance human immunity and improve cold tolerance.
Stocking up for New Year 囤货过年
During Minor Cold, people always start stocking New Year goods, which include Spring Festival couplets, New Year pictures, paper cuts for window decoration, firecrackers, incense and lanterns.
Mutton hot pot, chestnuts and baked sweet potato 羊肉火锅、栗子、烤红薯
Mutton hot pot, chestnuts and baked sweet potato are three recommended foods for Minor Cold. According to traditional Chinese medicine theories, people need to eat food that contains more yang energy to prevent cold from harming their organs. The Yang阳 energy in the three types of food is strengthened through their method of cooking: boiling, stir-frying and baking. Beef, sesame, walnuts, almonds and raisins are also good choices for Minor Cold.