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Tran Van Tieps is the only family producing clay ovens in the commercial Saigon. Around 20 workers have been sweating burning the stoves at his factory in District 8 on recent days to serve families who need new Kitchen Gods for the new year. Kitchen Gods in each Vietnamese family are believed to keep guard of them during the year, and leave for heaven to report their affairs to the Jade Emperor one week before the Lunar New Year, which is Thursday this week.

Tran Van Tiep's family is the only one left producing clay ovens by hand in commercial Saigon. Around 20 workers have been stoking the kilns at his factory in District 8 to produce ovens that symbolize the Kitchen Gods for the Lunar New Year. The Kitchen Gods are believed to guard Vietnamese families throughout the year, before leaving for heaven to report their affairs to the Jade Emperor one week before Tet.

Tiep makes an oven from wet clay. He said there are nearly 20 steps to a final oven. His factory buys fine clay from rural villages outside the city.

Tiep makes an oven from wet clay. He said there are nearly 20 steps needed to complete an oven. His factory buys fine clay from rural villages outside the city.

A worker adds three pieces that help hold pots. These supporters represent the trio of Kitchen Gods: a woman and her two husbands, who all very much in love with each other and die because of that.

A worker adds three mini turrets to the oven to represent the three Kitchen Gods: a woman and her two husbands who all die in a tragic love story.

The ovens will be fixed and aired to dry. Customers have many options now, so its very important that we make sure the ovens are of high quality and good shapes, a worker said.

The ovens are then aired to dry. “Customers have many options now, so it’s very important that we make sure our ovens are high-quality with a good shape,” a worker said.

Once they are dry enough, the ovens will be burned in kilns for two days. Tiep sells each oven for VND30,000-100,000 depending on their sizes. I believe the traditional ovens are always loved in time of Tet, Tiep said.

Once they are dry, the ovens are fired in kilns for two days. Tiep sells each oven for VND30,000-100,000 ($1.32-4.40) depending on size. “I believe traditional clay ovens will always be loved during Tet,” Tiep said.

From e.vnexpress.net
08/02/2018 08:55 GMT+7
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