Friday, December 23, 2011

i can cook the filled rice balls now

A couple days ago it was 冬至(dong1 zhi4), which was the "arrival of winter," when most Taiwanese (and Chinese) people will cook up some glutenous rice balls 湯圓(tang yuan) to celebrate this day every year.

I love these boiled rice balls with sweet peanut or sesame filling. They are almost like little hot mochi balls... I'd eat them all winter long!

I have not had homemade rice balls for a while. I should really consider hand-making some this winter.

You can easily purchase them in packages of 10, (like these,) in the freezer sections at the Asian markets, which is very convenient for me to do. The reason I haven't been cooking them much is because I never cooked them right, so most of the time the finished rice balls are torn and the filling will be all over the pot, and the inner side of the rice balls would still be hard!

BUT! But this "arrival of winter" I read up a little bit on cooking/boiling these frozen rice balls, and the result was great!

I boiled a pot of water first. As the water came to a rolling boil, I placed the frozen rice balls into the pot, allowed the water to boil again, and turned the heat down to low, and boiled the rice balls until they all floated on the surface of the water. After the rice balls started floating, added a little bit sugar to the water, and cooked an additional couple more minutes and they were done and every little rice balls were intact! :D

These rice balls were soft and slightly chewy... perfect texture of "tang yuan" for me!

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