I am not afriad of tomorrow, for I have seen yesterday and I love today~William Allen White

Sticky rice dumplings

I always feel very lucky when my grandma or my aunt make traditional home cooked dishes or special holiday foods.  In HK, June 6th is a public holiday, known more commonly to people as a day to party outdoors and cheer on dragon boat teams as they pedal furiously to the finish line in Stanley.

As with all holidays, there are special foods associated with each festivities, and the special food for this special day is sticky rice/glutinous rice dumplings.  These rice dumplings are wrapped with bamboo leafs and the typical ingredients include yellow bean paste, dried mushroom, a slice of pork, salty duck egg yolk, and dried scallop.  commercially to maximize sales and dollar value, vendors will advertise  adding “expensive” ingredients such as abalone, but those are all gimmicks to me. 

I like homemade sticky rice dumplings!  After steaming it for about 15-20 minutes, add a bit of soy sauce and what a great meal!

my aunt made me the salty variety, i am not a fan of sweet sticky rice dumpling, which my mom love eating with brown sugar


yes auntie, i love your homemade dumplings, i don't want your voucher for chain outlet made rice dumplings with abalone and MSG. HOMEMADE = the best!

So you ask, why eat sticky rice dumplings during the dragon boat festival?  Ahhh.. I have heard this tale since I was a little kid, I love it when my mom tell me, I keep having these images and pictures dancing in my head.  The story goes that there used to be a very honest and respectful adviser that is beloved by all the people in China.  Because of jealousy and incompetence of other aids and advisors to the emperor, they banded together to have the honest man thrown into the ocean to die.  When fishermen heard of this, they immediately get into their boats and head out to sea to look for his body.  As they head into the water, they beat furiously on the drums in hope of scaring the fish away and throw little rice dumplings into the water to feed the fish so they wouldn’t eat this hero’s corpse.  This is the story celebrating the hero called “Qu Yuan” and on the date of his death of June 6th, people continue rowing dragon boats and eating rice dumplings to remember him.


Comments on: "Sticky rice dumplings" (6)

  1. interesting story…. & I love sticky dumplings too….in Singapore it’s called Bachang….what’s it called in HK? I like the Nonya Bachang best…..a bit sweetish.

  2. I’m a huge fan of dumplings! My favourite is the Nonya variety that bookjunkie mentioned—it’s a pleasant combination of sweet and savoury. I also like the lotus-wrapped sticky rice served on menus in most dim sum joints… are those considered dumplings, too?

  3. sorry, I use the word “dumpling” very loosely, i pretty much use it for every type of food that is “wrapped”. Haha, I am pretty sure it’s called sticky rice dumplings, though when you eat sticky rice with lotus leaves in dim sum restaurants, they’re just called sticky rice right? OMG, I don’t even know, what a good question!

  4. Oooohhh… pillow dumplings! Is that conpoy I’m seeing? My gramma makes those pyramid-ish ones. I think those are the Fujianese variety 😛 Are you going to Stanley tomorrow?

  5. I have given serious thoughts of heading into Stanley for the dragon boat races, espeicaly since my alumn (UBC) is competing. BUT IT IS SOOOOO hot!!! Heading down to Causeway for a quick stroll and lunch and prob bum at home with the a/c…yes, I am very lazy….

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