The Chinese New Year starts TODAY, February 3, 2011. So I wish everyone “Gung Hey Fat Choy!” But the just concluded Midwest Blizzard makes mobility an issue, so no chance to go out and eat some yummy Chinese food. So I just made the traditional Tikoy and Chinese Fried Rice, plenty enough for us to welcome the year of the Rabbit. Rabbit must be loving the diced carrots in my fried rice.
Sweet New Year’s Cake (White Tikoy)
Made only of 3 ingredients, this steamed cake is believed to symbolize good luck, good fortune and better family bonding for the whole year. And this is a breeze to make…but it makes me wonder why people pay a fortune to buy these from Chinese stores.
1 1/4 cups hot water
1 cup white sugar
3 cups glutinous rice flour (sweet rice flour or Mochiko)
Make a rice paste. Start with stirring sugar in the hot water until sugar is completely dissolved; let cool. Place the rice flour in a medium mixing bowl, then slowly pour the sugar mixture, mixing continuously with a wire whisk. Beat until rice paste is smooth.
Line a round baking pan (or store-bought aluminum foil pan) with trimmed plastic wrap. Pour the rice paste into the prepared pan. Steam in a bamboo or aluminum steamer, over boiling water for 1 hour. Test for doneness with a toothpick.
I usually wait another day to let the tikoy or rice cake to harden for easy slicing; I store cooled cake in the refrigerator overnight. Thin slices of this cake are then dipped in beaten egg and fried in hot oil until nicely browned. The frying gives it more personality. Others will take this to the next level. Place these slices in eggroll wrapper (lumpia) with cheese or red bean paste), roll them and then fried.
Shall we say, the more tikoy you eat, the more lucky you will be…oh no, Jillian and Bob must not like these Chinese New Years. Oh well, just hope everyone gets into the treadmill at the end of the day.
Chinese Fried Rice
2 eggs, slightly beaten
enough oil to fry eggs
3 tablespoons sesame oil
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1 medium onion, finely chopped
1 large carrot, peeled and diced
1/2 cup frozen peas
1/2 cup to 1 cup leftover ham slices or sliced chinese sausage
3 cups packed leftover or day old cooked white rice
4 to 6 tablespoons soy sauce
Start frying the beaten eggs in hot oil in a wok or skillet, until nicely scrambled. Cut into small pieces. Transfer to a plate; set aside.
Add sesame oil in wok. Stir in minced garlic, chopped onions, diced carrots, peas, ham or sausage slices, and saute until heated through. Lower heat and add the rice and soy sauce. Blend well and stir fry to combine all. Add back scrambled eggs and mix well. Serve hot.
Enjoy your Chinese New Year!
P.S. In case you are curious like me…these are some of the famous Hollywood musicians and stars born in the Year of the Rabbit:
Frank Sinatra, Roger Moore, Andy Williams, Neil Sedaka, Tina Turner, Melissa Manchester, Charo, Luther Vandross, Sting, Vanessa L. Williams, Whitney Houston, Brad Pitt, Nicolas Cage, Drew Barrymore, Michael Bublé, and Hilary Duff.
And add to this list….Sarah Palin.