Laba congee (simplified Chinese: 腊八粥; traditional Chinese: 臘八粥; pinyin: làbāzhōu, also simplified Chinese: 八宝粥; traditional Chinese: 八寶粥; pinyin: bābǎozhōu) Laba congee is a ceremonial congee dish eaten on the eighth day of the twelfth month in the Chinese calendar. It is mainly made up of many kinds of rice, beans, peanuts, dried fruit, lotus seeds, etc. Depending on region-based variations in China, it can also include tofu, potato, meat and vegetables.
In the Han Dynasty, during the Laba Festival, people did not consume Laba congee as it was used for worshipping the gods. In theNorthern and Southern Dynasties period, the date of the Laba Festival was fixed on the eighth day of the twelfth lunar month. In theSong Dynasty, Laba congee was widely consumed throughout China by not only the common people, but also government officials and aristocrats. In the Qing Dynasty, the Laba Festival was sometimes celebrated as the “Spring Festival“, and Laba congee became even more popular. In the imperial court, the emperor and nobles gave Laba congee to the officials, servants, and others.