Asian Sweet Rice Pudding with Red Bean Paste & 2017 Chinese New Year Party

It seems true that either sweet rice or red / green bean paste is well accepted in America.  Insteresting…  Maybe that is because people haven’t realized how good they are and how many amazing desserts there are when sweet rice and red beans are combined together. 

I make Asian sweet rice pudding with red bean paste every year for our Chinese New Year party.  It is a kind of tradition to present it on dinner table on the last day of lunar year.  It means better life will come with a new lunar year. 

But that is not the reason why I love it.  I love it simply because it tastes great!  And I know a lot of friends will agree with me O(∩_∩)O~

Ingredients:

1 cup sweet rice (sticky rice)
water for cooking the rice (about 1 1/2 cups)
red bean paste
1 handful of lotus seeds
1 to 2 teaspoon lard/pork fat
sugar to taste
honey for topping
dried fruits of your choice (I use raisins and dried cranberries)
water for boiling lotus seeds (about 1 quart)

 

Directions:

Red bean paste is available in most Asian grocery stores.  They are usually sweetened.  So taste it first before you decide how much sugar you need to add to the pudding.  

I make my red bean paste from scratch.  I divide it into small batches.  Pack, seal and freeze in Ziploc bags. 

In a small pot, add water and lotus seeds.  Cook over medium low heat until the seeds become soft.  It might take between 1 and 1 1/2 hours.  Drain well.

Soak sweet rice in water for at least 1 hour.  Drain and add the rice to a medium bowl.  Add water. Steam over medium heat for about 40 to 50 minutes.  Remove from heat and stir in pork fat and sugar when the rice is still piping hot. 

Soak the raisins and cranberries with water.

Grease thoroughly the inside of a round shape bowl.  Add cooked lotus seeds, raisins, and cranberries to the bottom. 

Add a layer of cooked sweet rice, followed by a layer of red bean paste, and then another layer of cooked sweet rice.

Steam over medium heat for about 30 minutes.

Remove from heat and flip the pudding upside down in a plate.  Remove the bowl.

Top with honey and serve immediately.

The pudding goes really well with Chinese tea.

I hosted a Chinese Lunar New Year party at my house.  And I served traditional Chinese food O(∩_∩)O~ 

I was really busy in the kitchen.  I could only squeeze no more than one minutes to point and shoot the dishes.  Most of them are a little blurry.  My bad O(∩_∩)O~

I printed a copy of menu and put it on the table so that everyone knew exactly what they are.  My guests that day were all Chinese.  Sorry I didn’t prepare English menu.

Beef shank and tendon stew with daikon.  The recipe can be found here

BBQ baby back ribs

Duck braised in soy sauce

Pork head cheese

Mini egg dumplings

P1030478 copy.jpg

Mung beans noodles in hot and spicy chili oil sauce

Sweet rice pudding with red bean paste

Stir-fried Sichuan style pickled string beans and ground pork

The other one is stir-fried diced lotus roots with chili paste

Pickled radish

Cucumber and wood mushroom salad

Sweet rice cake with red beans and coconut milk

It is a must have dish on lunar celebrating dinner table.

Pizzelles

I added black sesame seeds to make a bit Asian style

My friend brought another traditional dish: braised pork belly with soy sauce.  She added quail eggs and bamboo shoots to make it extra flavorful.

Another friend brought a duck stew with mushrooms and dakon.  Yum!  I refilled my bowl twice O(∩_∩)O~

Steamed garlic shrimp with fine noodles was from my friend’s husband.  Thumbs up for it too!

A cup of cappuccino was a perfect ending for this great gathering. 

Wish you all a happy 2017 O(∩_∩)O~