Thursday, March 5, 2015

Taro cum Sweet Potato Glutinous Balls with Glutinous rice Cakes (年糕芋头番薯蛋)

I almost couldn't believe that Chinese New Year has already come to an end. Seems like it swoop pass so fast, I nearly had time to enjoy it. Doesn't it always. ;P Anyways, I am still glad that I did manage to catch up with family and friends which is what matters to me the most (besides eating the goodies of course haha!)

Since today is the last day of Chinese new year, also know as 元宵节. So traditionally people would have sweet glutinous rice dumplings. However since I still have a homemade Glutinous rice cake untouched in the fridge, that kind of made me think twice about boiling another big pot of glutinous sweet dumplings :P. And just so happened I met up with some fabulous food bloggers over the weekend, then Annie and Meg started talking about this Fried Nian Gao Ball recipe from Annie. :9 I was sold! It's almost like "一箭双雕"! I can use up the rice cake and make sweet glutinous balls dessert for元宵节! Sweet indeed haha! So here it is : Taro cum Sweet Potato Glutinous Balls with Glutinous rice Cakes (年糕芋头番薯蛋), or Fried Nian Gao Balls haha :D

 Looking at that crispy skin just makes my mouth water. :9 Although making this can be a little tedious, but I reckon the final result is so worth the effort (and calories). Since I made Sweet Potato Balls before, so I used my own recipe for that. But do head over to Annie's blog to check out her recipe as well for reference. ;)

For Glutinous Rice Cake recipe (年糕/Nian Gao) recipe, please refer to here. :)

Ingredients for Glutinous Balls with Glutinous rice Cakes (年糕芋头番薯蛋)
400g Glutinous Rice Cake (年糕) , chilled and harden
2 cups vegetable oil for frying
Sweet Potato Dough
225g peeled and steamed purple sweet potatoes
80g glutinous rice flour
50g rice flour
20g corn flour
60g caster sugar
2 tbsp vegetable oil
a couple tbsp water as per needed if dough is too dry
Vegetable oil for frying
  • In a large mixing bowl, mash the still warm sweet potatoes together with the sugar. Add in the both the rice flour, corn flour and mix well. Knead everything together until it comes together to form a soft pliable dough. 
  • If the dough is too wet, add a little bit more rice flour, if it is too dry, add a tablespoon of warm water. It shouldn't be sticky.
 
Taro Dough
225g peeled and steamed yam / taro
80g glutinous rice flour
50g rice flour
20g corn flour
60g caster sugar
2 tbsp vegetable oil
a couple tbsp water as per needed if dough is too dry
Vegetable oil for frying
  • In a large mixing bowl, mash the still warm sweet potatoes together with the sugar. Add in the rice flour, cake flour and corn flour and mix well. Knead everything together until it comes together to form a soft pliable dough. 
  • If the dough is too wet, add a little bit more rice flour, if it is too dry, add a tablespoon of warm water. It shouldn't be sticky.
  •  Next you cube the harden glutinous rice cakes, about 1 cm by 1 cm.
  • Pinch about 1 heaping teaspoon amount each of the sweet potato and yam dough, press them side by side to make into a flat dough. 

  • Place a square glutinous rice cake in the middle. Seal it up and roll round
The duo colour and flavor is just a brilliant idea! So nice isn't it. :)
  • Repeat this step till all the dough has been used up.
  • Now let's get frying! Heat up the 2 cups of vegetable oil in a heavy duty pot over medium low fire. Gently place the rolled dough balls into the heated oil.
 
  • Fried it till light golden brown on both sides. Remove and drain on paper towels. Fry them in small batches and dont over crowd them as they tend to stick together. Repeat till all the dough balls has been fried.
  •  DO NOT over fried these till dark brown because if you want to keep and reheat to serve again, you will need to re-fry these babies again. But it will be so yummy served crispy, not soggy soft skin. :P
Yes, I always do my QC when I am cooking haha! Looks pretty good I have to say. :9 Notice the two different colours of the dough, so nice right?
And a nice dessert like this definitely needs a sweet tea to go with it. So I brewed some Chinese sweet tea; Red Date, Longan Ginger tea (红枣龙眼姜茶).

Ingredients for Red Date, Longan Ginger tea (红枣龙眼姜茶) -Serves 4
500 ml water
15g red dates, cut halve
15g dried longan ( 桂圆)
3 slices of fresh ginger
3 tbsp sugar 
  • Rinse the red dates and dried longan . Place them in a small pot together with the water and ginger slices. Start boiling it over medium fire.
 
  • Once the water starts to boil, turn it down to a simmer. Let it simmer for a good 15 mins then add in the sugar.
 
  • Stir it so that the sugar melts in the mixture. Remove from fire and let it sip for 10 minutes before serving it. I love this drink!
I love that slight hint of spiciness from the ginger in that sweet drink. Plus ginger helps remove "wind" in the body, it's good for you! I shall brew this tea more often and chill it in the fridge. I am very sure it taste just as awesome when served cold. :9
One more close up of these delicious treats...just in case you are not convinced yet haha!
A nice afternoon tea like this would be great isn't it. :) Especially when you get to use up that glutinous rice cake that has been sitting around in the house for the past 15 days or more haha. ;D Do try it out and let me know how it turn out! Enjoy!


 

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Mango Sago Pomelo (杨枝甘露)

I guess every year after all the praying at home is done, we are usually left with a (or more) ripe pomelo fruit. Yes of course you are welcome to just peel and consume it as is. But some might think it's bitter after taste ain't that palatable...unless you get Ipoh Pomelo heehee (Confirm sweet yo). So why not make dessert out of it? Of course the most common one is Mango Sago Pomelo (杨枝甘露). If you have attended Chinese dinners or weddings, there's bound to be once you will have this as a dessert. Well, now you can satisfy your appetite by making a whole lot of it and chill it in the fridge to consume whenever you fancy over the next couple days, yoohoo!  
There is quite a number of different recipes out there, which I am pretty sure everyone has their own concoction and preference of sweetness. Personally I love the soup to be stronger in mango taste, not too sweet and a creamy after taste. And of course with loads of liao (sago, mango and pomelo!) inside, yum!


Ingredients for Sago Mango Pomelo (Serves 6-8 pax)
2 large ripe mango (oops picture only shows one haha)
  • Peel the mango, cut out all the flesh. Then weigh out about 250g of the flesh for puree (Which I usually picked out the not so nicely cut ones) 

  • Cut the rest into bite size cubes and store in a air tight container to chill in the fridge.
  • Puree the 250g mango flesh till smooth. Set aside to use later.
70g sago
3 cups water
250g mango puree   
150ml fresh milk
200ml evaporated milk
200ml water
70g caster sugar (you can add less first, taste test then add more to your preference)
Fresh mango flesh (cut earlier) 
Pomelo pulps (I added half of my pomelo fruit in, so go crazy and add more if you love this fruit) 

  • Soak the sago for 5 minutes in the 3 cups of water in a sauce pan. 
  • Then place the pan over medium fire and start boiling. Stir constantly making sure the sago doesn't clump together or the bottom of the pan.
  • Cook for about 5-7 minutes till the sago is transparent. Off the fire ans let sit for another 5 minutes.
  • Drain the whole mixture in to a fine sieve. Run cold water over it and set aside for use later.
  • In another pot, add in milk, evaporated milk, water and sugar in. Place the pot over medium fire and bring to a simmer and stir constantly to make sure the sugar melts.
  • One you see bubbles on the side of the pot, remove from fire.
  • Leave the mixture to cool for 30 minutes. 
  • Add in the mango pure and sago. 
  •  
  • You can whisk if necessary to break up the lumps and making sure everything is incorporated nicely.
  •  
  • Add in the pomelo and mango cubes and give it a gently stir. Chill the whole mixture for at least 2 hours in the fridge in an air tight container. Best eaten when cold. :9 Enjoy!

This dessert is best enjoyed after a nice hot pot dinner. So make for your family soon! I am sure they will love it too. ;)