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Monday, February 4, 2013

DIY - Nian Gao 年糕 (Chinese New Year's Sticky Cake)

I hope you do not get sated seeing another version of 'Nian Gao',  specially to my friends who dislike this type of sticky cake...If you read my previous post on the steamed nian gao with grated coconut, basically the sticky cake was bought from a 'pasar pagi' (morning market) and I was extremely disappointed specially it is not fragrant and flavorful. Probably due to less ingredients used and process of steaming is very short.

Previously, I have read the recipe of making nian gao and I am looking forward to make it a week before CNY arrives...Thank goodness, I made it happen.**happy**

After making this, now I know better why a delicious and authentic nian gao is so expensive because you need the patience during the process of steaming. Not to mention, for those who using gas to cook it, you will definitely feel your gas cylinder becomes lighter

According to Sonia's mom (Nasi Lemak Lover), if you want to achieve a better caramelization, full of glutinous rice fragrant and nice brown colour of your cake, you will need to spend at least 5 hours to steam these sweeties.

Well, I did not manage to achieve the timing instead I just steamed them merely for 2 hours.

Recipe :
Nian Gao (adapted from Sonia's blog and but the ratio is credited to Kelly)
**used 3 ramekins**

Ingredients :
350g - glutinous rice flour
350ml water
350g Sugar (250g brown sugar and 100g caster sugar)
2 tbsp sunflower oil
Banana leaves - soften it by blanched in hot water

1. Line the ramekins with banana leaves.
2. Place the glutinous rice flour in a large bowl, mix in brown sugar, oil and water. Stir the mixture till sugar dissolved.
3. Use a small saucepan to cook the caster sugar until it is fully caramelised
4. Pour the caramelised sugar into flour mixture, and stir until the golden syrup dissolved in the mixture.
5. Strain the mixture and pour the mixture in ramekins.
6. Steam cake over high flame for 1 hour, and turn to low flame for another one or two hours (ideal is 4 hours). **Don't forget to check on the water level, refill hot water from time to time.**

I am submitting this post to Chinese New Year Delights 2013 hosted by Sonia aka Nasi Lemak Lover 

46 comments:

  1. For sure...I won't make this nian gao,very time consuming.
    Ling, urs looks super good.

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    Replies
    1. ahhaha..and gas consuming too unless I want to use wood

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  2. My aunt still makes this for sale... its definately a lot of patience! Yours looks really nicely color even when you said you did not steamed it to the required amount of time... still droolworthy!

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    1. wow..really. Yes, you need the patience and constantly check on the water level else the work will get burn.

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  3. Looks so good but no, thank you, Not a fan, like how I'm not a fan of those mochi as well.

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    1. Never gonna buy u mochi knowing u dun like those sticky stuffs..ehehehe

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  4. I love nian gao, only know how to get the best nian gao in the market and zero knowledge in making them, heheh! Yours' look good despite having to steam for mere 2 hours.

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    1. Me too...Now you know the method to do it. Next yr can try making it.ehehehe

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  5. It really took long hours to make a good nian gao. When my grandma was around, she used to send long hours in the kitchen watching and steaming her nian gao. Kudos to you for having the patience to make this chinese delicacy.

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    Replies
    1. I think the older generation would not mind spending the time to produce the best result for the nian gao. I miss those years back then..

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  6. Looks yummsss... do you take orders? Hehehe...I malas to make and don;t like those commercially made ones.

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    1. Thanks...LOL!! Orders..I think I have to buy more woods and set a place to cook this cake.hahahahah

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  7. Oops accidentally hit enter before finishing. They look good! Homemade is definitely better.

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    1. Truly agree. Homemade is always the best.

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  8. My mum used to steam nian gao. I could see she puts a lot of effort when doing it.

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    1. Yes...cos u need to check on the water level on and off. Check on the fire as well. Tiring walk in and out from the kitchen

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  9. Quite sad the new generation do not have the chance to see how they are made as most modern working people have lost touch in steaming nian gao. When as a little kid my mama would panic with me around when baking or steaming or frying any CNY stuff. Ma mama has a taboo and always reminded us not to say anything not 'good' but Bananaz would do otherwise. Would come back from school and shout "nian gao not nice already got sure 'pimples' one". Ma mama would ssshhhhh every year but turn out the nian gao or other cookies got no problem. No easy seeing her steaming the nian gap needs lots of firewood, take care of the fire, add water etc its a huge project.

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    1. Lucky my years, I still managed to witness how the nian gao is made using the traditional way of steaming it, burning the wood to set a fiery flame.eheheheh.

      Our years, my kids will get to see me using gas. Oh yes, I remember the taboo. We cannot simply say 'not good'. my grandma will scold me.

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  10. I knew it can't be that easy. 5 hours!

    Well, I'll make a project out of it.

    Thanks for the recipe Yee Ling! :D

    P/S - I didn't know you wanted the ba kua from Sanbanto, I would have sent some over.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. Yes, 5 hours but I did not manage to achieve it. Maybe next year.hehehhe

      I think you sure can come out with a delicious nian gao. Next yr,ok!

      Most welcome. Merely sharing it with my readers.

      Oooo..ahahhah. Is okay. I am hoping to get the cute packaging from Arthur. Hope he dun makan the packaging as well.

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    2. Thanks Yee Ling! :)

      I'll try it this year since my mom and sis just came back.

      HAHAHAHAHA

      What packaging? The paper bag or the one that the ba kua is in? I don't think you can keep the latter, even though the ba kua is individually wrapped, it's still going to be a bit oily. :)

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    3. LOL...actually I wanted to have the latter but since you mentioned it's oily...to bad can't keep it. U duno, i love to collect junks.ahahahahah

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    4. Haha! I'll bring you something from Sibu when I come back!

      I don't have the return date yet though, am discussing work stuff back here in Sibu so I'll buzz you before I get back! :)

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    5. Heyy....NO NEED! Don't trouble yourself to bring back anything from Sibu.

      Next time I go visit Arthur and if you happen to be there....belanja me makan can edy.

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    6. I'll be bring back stuff anyway! :)

      Yee Ling! T_T

      I'm having a bit of trouble with #3 - was trying it yesterday with my mom and sis (mom collects ang pow and was very impressed with your homemade one).

      What type of castor sugar are you using and what is the sugar to water ratio?

      350 ml water to 100 gram castor sugar
      or
      100 ml water to 100 gram castor sugar (taking the brown sugar out of the equation)

      I can't get it to properly caramelize for the second time and had to wash up. What's the agak agak ratio for water to castor sugar? Or did you not use water?

      Sorry for such a newbie question!

      Thanks Yee Ling! :D

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    7. @@lll **spanks spanks** refused to listen.LOL

      Aijor..the angpow, dun mention la.**shy**

      For #3, FYI...i did not use any water to cook the caster sugar (not sure if is right though, since the method i refer did not mention i need to use any water). Cook the sugar until fully caramelized. Once the sugar starts to melt, keep stirring to distribute the heat and once it turns brown syrup, immediately pour to the flour mixture. Keep stirring until it combine. (must act quick else the caramelized sugar will start crystallizing).

      Normally there will be lumps, just sieve it before you pour to the steaming bowl to steam.

      If you are just using caster sugar :
      ***350ml water is for 350g caster sugar+ 100g caster sugar
      350g caster sugar add to flour mixture and balance 100g caster sugar for cooking the brown syrup****

      Glad to hear you, your mom & sis are working on this project. I am sorry if the steps here confused you and your mom. I am also a newbie..ehehhheh

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    8. I personally think is also fine to use this :

      350ml water to 350g caster sugar. That will be 250g caster sugar (for flour mixture) + 100g (for cooking). Maybe the cake will not be that sweet.

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    9. Hmmm...normal type of caster sugar I am using.

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    10. Okay, thanks for the clarification Yee Ling! :D

      We'll do it again for third day of CNY. Haha! It's fun.

      That's the problem I'm having too! I'll use your advice, put it on really low heat and try to caramelize it using no water. Okay, acting quick, I haven't prepared the flour yet, I always have problems with caramelizing sugar so that's the bit I want to get out of the way.

      Thanks again Yee Ling! Buzz you before I go back. Happy CNY to you and your family! :D

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    11. Aijor...i hope I don't confused you.ehehhehe

      Yes, the process of caramelizing is not easy. It tends to start crystallizing very fast and you need to act quick.ehheheh

      Okok...sure sure. Enjoy your time in Sibu with family and friends.

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    12. Thanks Yee Ling! Can't wait for your next update! :D

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    13. Most welcome....trying my best. Blog constipation.ahahahahaah

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    14. Hahaha! No worries. Relax and rejuvenate your chi Yee Ling! <3

      Delete
  11. pui fook la. you really have the patience to make this.


    hmm make we onder if i steam it in rice cooker will it be "faster" ah...coz hotter mah and no need to check water

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    1. I thought of using rice cooker but can only put one wor. my rice cooker very small.

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  12. 2 hours for those 3 only? Aiyo.. u really have the patience hor?

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    1. LOL...meanwhile I went and watch tv. Ok la...spend 2 hours watching tv and jaga api at the same time

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  13. Wow, I've been seeing a lot of nian gao recipes! Awesome, dear! I'm sure your family & friends will appreciate your effort :)

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    1. Thanks Shirley. My girls only took a bite of it.hahahahah

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  14. I thought Nian Gao making is complicated, but after reading your recipe, it is not as difficult as I thought!

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    1. Not complicated, all it takes is patience. Try it. You will get the full satisfaction when you see the final result.hehehhe

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  15. Wah Lin gou also can make ah. Very geng la you. Looks lovely, Ling.

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    1. NO geng la..merely testing my caramelizing skill.ehhehehe

      Happy Chinese New Year to you and family, Lin.

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  16. Ling , just dropping by to wish you and your family Kung Hei Fat Choi ! May the Year of the Snake bring you happiness , good health and good fortune !

    Oh ! Throw some of that nian gao over here ! lol

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    Replies
    1. Anne, glad to hear from you.

      Thanks for the lovely wishes and same goes to you.

      Okay...throwing now. Catch it!!! ehehhehe

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