3 Kinds of Chinese New Year Cakes

Haven’t posted for a while. I still haven’t bought a new oven since my last one was broken down. I’m still interested in eating all those high carb food though. The Chinese New Year has just come and I’ve made 3 kinds of Chinese New Year steamed cakes today. They are Chinese Turnip Cake (left), Sticky Cake in the shape of Variegated Carp, and Water Chestnut Cake (top).

Cake in Cantonese/Mandarin pronunciation is the same as “high” in the same language. Therefore we have these cakes meaning for a better life in the new year.

Happy Chinese New Year guys!

Chinese New Year Dumplings 油角

I like dim sum and Chinese festival food, although they are fading as time goes.  I learnt to make some of them from a chef few years before, including the below Chinese New Year sweet dumplings.

I looked for the English name of the dumplings on the internet, and there were many versions: “Fried Triangles” (well they are not triangles), “crispy peanut puffs” (there are other fillings in these dumplings), “Yau Kok” (the Cantonese pronounciation), “Yau Jiao” (Mandarin version). I think we better standardize the English name in order to better promote these delicious food. I now will just call them “Chinese New Year Dumplings” which should be the easiest to remember.

These dumplings consists of a sweet filling wrapped in a piece of dough. They look similar to the savory ones but are sweet and deep fried. The dough is made of egg, sugar, flour, water and lard (or shortening), and let rest for a while before shaping. It’s similar to making a flaky pie crust, so you can imagine the texture of the dumplings is also similar. In the filling, there are sugar, desiccated coconut, peanuts and sesame seeds.

The dumplings resemble ancient Chinese gold ingots, hoping each other to make more money by giving them out or eating them. In the old times people would make them at home before Chiense New Year. It’s less common now. Luckily my brother likes them so I have a chance to make some.

Today is the day before Chinese New Year. Happy CNY!

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