Vegetarian Festival

posted: 2009-10-28

The Chinese Vegetarian Festival in 2009

From the 18th to 26th of October, 2009, many towns in Thailand celebrated the Chinese Vegetarian Festival. Phuket, Bangkok's Chinatown and Samut Prakhan are well known for their colorful processions and food stalls decked out in yellow flags.

I look forward to this festival - the variety of dishes you can make with tofu, nuts, pulses and vegetables is quite surprising. In fact I often wish that more restaurants and food stalls in Thailand would serve these dishes all year. The only one I am aware of is in the food court of Robinson's Rachada and is I believe owned by Khun Mechai, proprietor of the "Cabbages and Condoms" restaurants.

Temporarily Vegetarian Food CourtTemporarily Vegetarian Food Court

The festival seems to have began in Phuket about 150 years ago, its object being personal and communal purification. Participants abstain from eating meat and also, hopefully, from sex and alcohol. Utensils used for preparing food should not have been used in the preparation of meat.
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