Happy Chinese New Year!

Bring out all that Chinese food, because it’s time to celebrate! Woo!

Unfortunately, I don’t get all of my mom’s amazing Chinese cooking while here at school, but I’m sure I’ll celebrate in full force next week when we can go places… Because right now, Blizzard Nemo decided to lock us in! I’m not complaining, though–a snow day and a lot of fluffy powder to play in is fine by me!

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Over two feet of snow on the ground? Let’s play!

A day off gives me more time to do my work, and of course more time to have some fun! While other people were being studious, though, I decided to let loose and celebrate Chinese New Year by making some 年糕, which is Chinese New Year cake! For those who haven’t had it before, it has the consistency of mochi, and although it’s served unfried, you’re supposed to dip it in egg (though that’s optional) and pan-fry it! Mmmm :)

I haven’t had 年糕 in a really really really long time, partially because I wasn’t sure if I liked it. When I was little I didn’t, so I avoided it at all costs, but now my taste buds have woken up and are very happy! 

I thought 年糕 would be much harder to make, but it’s so simple! Just a few ingredients, an hour, and you’re golden. I found this recipe while browsing online. Instead of steaming it in a wok, my roommate and I decided to be creative and use our rice cooker! Handy, right? 

Later that night, we fried it and enjoyed it to our heart’s content! We still had some leftover (even though I only made half a batch!) so we gave it to some of our Chinese friends who know what good 年糕 is. I was so surprised and flattered when they RAVED over it! Looks like I’ll have to make this again!

Well, without further ado, here’s 年糕 for you! Enjoy!

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Golden and delicious, right out of the rice cooker!

Chinese New Year Cake (年糕)

Yields one 9″ pie plate. (The picture shown above is half the recipe)

Ingredients

  • 3 1/4 cups glutinous rice flour
  • 1 1/2 cups brown sugar
  • 1 1/3 hot water, plus 1 tablespoon

Directions

  1. Grease a 9″ pie pan and prepare a wok or pot for steaming. 
  2. Whisk brown sugar and water in a large bowl, adding water 3/4 cup at a time, until the sugar is completely dissolved.
  3. Mix in glutinous rice flour until a smooth batter forms.
  4. Pour the batter into the pie pan. Steam in high heat for 1 hour or less, or until the cake has a sticky but firm consistency. Remove from steamer and let cool completely on a plate. You may eat after cooling or store in an air-tight container or wrapped in cling wrap for a few days.
  5. Optional: when ready to eat, cut into pieces and dip pieces in raw egg. Pan fry until outsides are dark and crispy. 

Let me know how yours turns out!

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