Celebrate Chinese New Year with Easy Eight-Treasure Rice & Steamed Rice Cakes!

I made a basket of hometown goodies for a Chinese New Year party, and my non-hometown coworkers requested recipes! Here are 2 simplified version of traditional southern Chinese rice desserts with my own twists. 

Eight-treasure rice: (missing many common 'treasures', but lotus seed and picked plums are kinda out of everyone's way to get; there are no hard rules anyways, as long as you have 8 ingredients it counts, & even if you don't it's just as delicious!)


for the rice:
1/2 cup forbidden rice
1/2 cup purple sticky rice
2 tbsp brown sugar
1 tbsp butter

for the filling:
2oz purple yam
2 tbsp coconut milk
1 tsp brown sugar (or to taste, depending on how sweet your yam is)

toppings: dates & walnut

Cook the forbidden rice & purple sticky rice together in a rice cooker. Use the brown rice setting if you have it.
While the rice is cooking, make the filling. Slice & steam a purple yam for ~20 min, or until softened. Smash it with a mortar & pestle. Add coconut milk & brown sugar. Mix until fully combined
Once the rice is cooked, stir in butter & brown sugar. Mix until fully combined.
Start assembling! - line the bottom of a bowl with nuts & dates. Slowly add rice & fill the bowl half way. Add in the fillings. Fill up the rest of the bowl with rice. Cover the bowl with a plate and flip the whole thing upside down. Remove the bowl, take a picture, & dig in!

Steamed rice cakes: (who's got the time & patience to make invert syrup? not me! this is a 3-ingredient rice cake, if you don't count water)

1/2 cup mochi flour 
1/3 cup rice flour
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/3~1/2 cup water

Whisk mochi flour with rice flour. Slowly add water while stirring with a chopstick or fork. You're looking to wet the rice flours & turn it into crumbles, but not dough or paste. Add water a little at a time, keep wetting the dry powders until you get all crumbles & no dry powders. Stop adding water as soon as you reach that stage! Do not over-water! Dig in with your hand and loosen up the crumbles. Pass them through a mesh strainer if you have one. Now lightly sprinkle your baking containers with rice crumbles; fill each container up half way. Sprinkle with a layer of brown sugar. Fill up the rest of the container with rice crumbles. Steam for ~20 minutes. Enjoy while hot!
*Note: rice cakes will harden when cooled. Just reheat in steamer or microwave & it'll soften again.

Share with your friends! Fwiw, they're all gluten-free! XD


  1. Wow, I am drooling! Can't wait to try this amazing recipe. Looks wonderful. Happy New Year!

    1. Thank you!! Didn't see the comment til now; hope you enjoyed the recipe! Belated Happy New Year! :)


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