Thursday, February 3, 2011

Delicious Surprises for Lunar New Year

The Lunar New Year is around the corner, time to celebrate the Year of the Rabbit with a scrumptious array of special Chinese dishes.

Chinese cuisine always offers delicious surprises to whet the appetites of food lovers. One of the must-eat delicacies during Lunar New Year celebrations is nian gao or sticky cake made from glutinous rice.
Legend has it that nian gao is used as a gift for the Kitchen God during Chinese New Year’s celebrations and is said to bring wealth and prosperity in the coming year. John Chu, executive chef at the JW Marriot Hotel in Jakarta, recently shared his tips for making nian gao.
The basic ingredients include glutinous rice flour, vegetable oil, water, coconut milk and sugar.
“Put sugar into boiling water until it is dissolved. Then put the glutinous rice flour in a large bowl, pour in the sugar and water mixture slowly with the coconut milk until the mixture turns into dough,” said chef Chu.
“You have to be careful when mixing the ingredients to make a smooth batter. If you pour the sugar water too quickly, it will make balls in the batter.”
To get some color, chef Chu suggested adding carrot juice to the basic dough.
He said people put the dough in various cake tins that produce shapes like koi, sunflowers and golden bars, and steam them for around one hour.
The hotel offers the nian gao in three flavors — traditional, traditional golden and coconut milk.
Besides the sticky cakes, food lovers can also try an array of Chinese delicacies.

Full article by Triwik Kurniasari

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