Ring in Chinese New Year with homemade Nian Gao (Recipe)

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Nian gao is a sweet rice cake made from glutinous rice that is commonly eaten to mark the new lunar year as it symbolises prosperity. Of the m any Chinese New Year desserts, it is arguably the most popular.  Although made from just a handful of ingredients, the time-consuming preparation required to produce the distinctive squishy, sweet dessert makes it an arduous task. That is, unless you have a thermomix.

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shutterstock_1397406731INGREDIENTS:

  • 400g Chinese brown sugar, roughly cut into 1cm pieces
  • 500g glutinous rice flour
  • 500g hot water
  • 10g rice bran oil, or coconut oil
  • pinch of salt
  • 1200g water, for steaming

METHOD:
1. Grease two round 17cm (7 inch) sandwich tins and set aside.
2. Place sugar in TM bowl and mill 15 sec/speed 9. Scrape down sides of bowl with spatula and mix for a further 10 sec/speed 9. Cook sugar 10 min/Varoma/speed 2.
3. Add 500g hot water, oil, salt and flour to TM bowl and mix 20 sec/speed 5. Scrape down sides of bowl with spatula and mix 10 sec/speed 5 or until mixture is well combined.


4. Cook 10 min/100°C/speed 3. Pour mixture into prepared tin and cover with foil (This prevents the water condensation from dripping onto the cake during steaming). Alternatively, cover the tins with a muslin cloth and secure with an elastic band.
5. Place a pair of chopsticks on the bottom layer of the Varoma dish and position tin on top. Place the second tin on top of the Varoma tray .
6. Pour water into the mixing bowl (there is no need to clean the bowl) and carefully place Varoma into position and cook 60 min/Varoma/speed 1. Upon completion of the first hour of cooking, steam for a further 15 min/Varoma/speed 1.
8. Remove tins from Varoma and allow to cool (Be very careful when removing the Varoma to avoid scalding yourself with hot steam). Once cool, carefully remove the cakes from the tin.

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The cake will become firmer after a few days and can be cut into 1.5cm thick slices and pan fried until soft.


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