February 4, 2010

tikoy (Chinese sweet steamed cake)

(1) the steamed and cooked tikoy ready to wrap and refrigerate (2) tikoy is easier to slice when it's cold (3) the slices dipped in beaten egg (4) pan fried tikoy ready to eat and enjoy.

(1) my weekend breakfast...warm tikoy slices (2) my husband found a sweeter way to enjoy tikoy...with maple syrup...and I have to agree, it was good.

Chinese New Year starts on Valentine's Day this year. I will always associate tikoy with this big event which is celebrated with colorful festivities every year at Manila's huge Chinatown in Binondo. By now, most of the food stores there must be selling this popular steamed rice cake. They are usually round in shape and packaged in bright red boxes. It's traditional to give away and eat this especially during the Chinese New Year season for it's believed to bring good luck. I have many Chinese-Filipino friends and have met a few more when I worked as a garment designer for a retail chain in Manila. We used to have generous suppliers who would start distributing tikoy at the office about this time. We also grew up eating them as my parents used to buy and receive them as gifts. For many weeks we would have boxes of tikoy in the refrigerator, ready to slice and cook. Tikoy is one snack food that I remember well from my childhood so I was very delighted when my cousin found this tikoy recipe online and shared it with me to try.


2 1/2 cups glutinous rice flour (available in most Asian groceries)
1 cup sugar
1 3/4 cups water

Combine and mix all the ingredients well using an electric mixer or wire whisk. Line a 8" or 9" round pan or glass dish with foil then brush the foil well with oil or coat evenly with non-stick spray. This is an important step which I missed the first time so the tikoy stuck to the non-stick foil I used. Steam for 40 minutes up to an hour depending on the thickness of the rice cake. It will look set and feel firm when it's fully cooked. Cool then seal in plastic wrap and refrigerate for a few hours or overnight. Slice then dip in beaten egg. Pan fry in a little canola oil over medium heat. Serve warm.
2010 is the Year of the Tiger

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