Tangyuan (汤圆): An Old Chinese Tradition

This is definitely one of those dishes that reminds me of home.  This traditional Chinese dish is made during special occasions such as Chinese New Year, weddings, family homecoming, etc.  The dish is believed to bring good fortune and luck to those who eat it, hence it’s great association as a main dish at Chinese New Year.  I remember eating this a lot when I was a kid and playing with my Ninja Turtle figurines lol, not so much nowadays.  However, when my mom does make it, I make sure I get plenty.  Enjoy!


2 cups of Glutinous Rice flour
1 – 1/2 cups of water
Red food coloring
2 tablespoons of ginger root (I normally do not dice the, I leave them whole)
1/2 cup to 1 cup of sugar (depending how sweet you want it)
4 cups of water
1/4 cup of sesame seeds


Mix the flour and water together, adding water in small 1/4 cup increments until the flour becomes malleable and not sticky.  Roll them into small little balls.  Dush more rice flour if it becomes sticky.  Put on a pot of water and bring it to a boil.  Proceed to put the rice balls with the two tablespoons of ginger in and cook them until they float.  After they are cooked, add in the sugar.  You can add more than a cup of sugar if you want it really sweet…it’s really up to you, but I normally put about 1/2 cup to 3/4 of a cup depending on how much water I use.  It’s only suppose to be mildly sweet, not candy sweet.

After the previous steps have been completed.  Take the sesame seeds and lightly toast them over the pan.  After they are lightly toasted, add them to the mixture and let it cool down before you serve.


~ by thankgoditsfood on December 22, 2009.

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