Buddhist’s Delight

Buddhist's Delight

Last week for the Lunar New Year, I made Buddhist’s Delight also known as Buddha’s Delight, Vegetarian’s Delight or in Chinese, jai.

It’s a traditional vegetarian dish served on the first day to bring success and prosperity into the new year. Each family has its own variation but generally it includes a mix of dried and fresh ingredients symbolizing wealth and luck. Things such as:

  • Chinese dried black mushrooms
  • dried cloud ears
  • dried lily bulbs
  • cellophane noodles
  • shredded fresh bean curd sheet
  • fried tofu puffs
  • sliced napa cabbage
  • sliced carrots
  • ginger

Seems like a lot of stuff, but once you’re done with the soaking of the dried ingredients and the cutting, everything comes together fairly quickly.

So quickly in fact, that I didn’t really get down the recipe. But I will next time. Buddhist’s Delight or a variation of it can be served any ol’ time, it’s not just reserved for new year’s day.

I always thought it was funny that the custom is to feast on new year’s eve then have this one vegetarian dish on new year’s day (sorta like a cleansing thing) and then it’s back to feasting the following day.

Happy feasting in the Lunar New Year!


  1. says

    OK, it looks beautiful, but I haven’t heard of half of those ingredients before lol. What the heck is dried cloud ears? lol.

    I bet it all tastes good! I think that is what I love about food. You can always learn something new.

  2. chow says

    CW – My favorite too!

    VeganKorean – Thanks!

    Chuck – Dried cloud ears is a jelly fungi. It’s a dark colored mushroom that looks like ears growing on trees. It doesn’t really have much of a taste, it’s more of a texture thing. Yup, I’m always learning about and trying new foods.

    Veggie Wedgie – Thank you!

    lisa (show me vegan) – I think it’s the many different ingredients that makes it so good.

    steph – Totally a must have for new years day!

    Heikki – Thank you!

    miss v – Thanks!

  3. crystal says

    This is my favourite dish :) In fact, this dish is full of goodness, all the ingredients like mushroom, fungus, dried lily bulb are full of nutritients (iron … etc).

    BTW, I tried out your suggestion of using fremented beancurd for zucchini. The first time I did, the photo didn’t turn out right. I tried a second time, going to post soon. Nice and thank you so much.
    Cheers :)

  4. chow says

    Vegiegail – Thanks, recipe is going up next time I make the dish.

    crystal – Glad to hear it’s full of good stuff! Extra glad you liked the fermented beancurd with zucchini. Looking forward to seeing your post. :-)

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