Friday, 31 January 2014

happy chinese new year, and dessert flashbacks...

Another new year has arrived, according to the lunar calendar.

My parents visited recently, and while they didn't hang around in Australia long enough to spend Chinese New Year together, we still had a grand time.

Just quickly, I want to share with you a couple of sweet treats they made during their time in Melbourne.

First, these blue glutinous rice cakes, made with steamed glutinous rice, flavoured with coconut milk and coloured with homemade dye from blue butterfly pea flower. Some people call these cakes "pulut tai tai", which, I don't know, translates into "lady rice" or something like that. They are also referred to as "kuih kaya", because they are eaten with generous dabs of kaya, a coconut jam (or perhaps more accurately, caramelized coconut curd). In my family, we know it as "kah tak kueh", which means "foot-stomped cake", as the cooked rice grains are traditionally compressed into cake form by literally stepping on them - I think something like banana leaves are layered over so the feet doesn't come in direct contact with the goods, ha. When my dad makes this, he just presses it with his hands, and weighs it down with heavy books. One day, though, I reckon it would be fun if we tried making it with the old-school technique!

Blue pea flower glutinous rice cakes, served with a dab of kaya garnished with a dried blue pea flower.

There is also this fabulous creation that seems to be a twist on tang yuan (a glutinous rice ball dessert which is traditionally served in a sweet ginger soup) - apparently my parents ate it somewhere and then decided to attempt making it at home themselves. So here we have pumpkin tang yuan in a taro-infused coconut milk. Deliciousness.

Pumpkin tang yuan in taro coconut milk.

My parents are super amazing and they make such a great team, don't you agree? I'll wrap this post up with my best wishes for the days to come. Happy Chinese New Year to my fantastic family, and to all of you!

14 comments:

  1. I am drooling! Those look sooo good. Taro infused coconut milk...that sounds like heaven. Happy new year!

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    1. It was heavenly! I think it was basically just steamed taro blended with coconut milk, and then sweetened with a little sugar. :)

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  2. Ps. Your parents do make an amazing team. Now I totally wish I had access to blue pea flower to make dye from too.

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    1. Yeah, if I remember correctly, they picked and dried their own blue pea flowers. So awesome! :D

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  3. Wow they sure know their way around the kitchen, those both sound so interesting!

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  4. Oh yum! I am sceptical about blue food but this does sound good!

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    1. No need to be skeptical in this case, it's all natural and made with pretty flowers. :D

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  5. Happy Chinese New Year! those desserts look beautiful!

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  6. I've never tried either desserts before, they look wonderful, especially the one that's naturally dyed with blue pea flower! You'll have to tell me where to get blue pea flowers in Melbourne!

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    1. Ah, I don't know where to get them in Melbourne either! I think these came from my parents' garden, they dried it and brought it over here. :)

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  7. Happy Chinese New Year! The blue glutinous rice cakes are so pretty.

    Glad to hear that you had a good time with your family. Yes, they do make a good team! :)

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    1. Thank you and happy Chinese new year to you, too! :D

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