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Homemade Wet & Dry Tang Yuan 汤圆 (Glutinous Rice Ball) during Winter Solstice

Happy Winter Solstice 冬至快乐 to everyone. Another year finishing soon, we are celebrating a special Chinese Festival called Winter Solstice whereby serving glutinous rice ball and eat together with family members. This is a festival where we celebrate 1 month before Chinese New Year, there is a myth saying that if it rains today, it will not rain on the 1st day of CNY. So far, I found it quite accurate though.

Well, talking about traditional food during the festive. Glutinous rice ball is my favorite Chinese dessert. In fact, I am eating them not only during these days, simply love their texture and chewiness.
It's my first year to do these homemade glutinous rice ball with filling. And most importantly they are made from natural food colouring.

There are 2 flovours for my homemade tang yuan again, they are suitable for either wet or dry. Wet definition here means serve these glutinous rice ball in the ginger and pandan infused syrup while dry is just cooked and then serve with some crushed peanut which is quite similiar to Japanese mochi. 

The options for my filling today are peanut and lotus paste. Both equally good, if you opt for less sweet option, peanut will be better fit for you.

These are my dry version of milky way and Purple tang yuan. Simply cook them in hot water, scope out and serve with crushed peanut and sugar. Delicious!

I named it as Milky way tang yuan, this is because I include milk in the rice ball. They are slightly smoother and softer than conventional or traditional tang yuan. They can be kept or refrigerated up to several days. I combined them with peanut filling, a little bit sweet and saltiness.

From the beginning, I feel like this tang yuan is made from Purple potato. In fact, I'm using the natural colour combination of my homegrown blue pea flours and fresh raspberries in making these rice balls. Believe me, you will feel more comfortable when eating these natural colour tang yuan rather than those colouring tang yuan. These filling are lotus paste.

Homemade Tang Yuan 汤圆 (Glutinous Rice Ball) Recipe:
Ingredients for Rice Ball
1 cup of Glutinous Rice
1 TBSP rice flour (optional)
1/2 cup water (adjust according to the dough)
2 TBSP milk

Natural colouring
5-8 fresh blue pea flowers\
4 fresh raspberries

1 cup Crushed peanut
1/2 cup caster sugar
1 cup lotus paste

2 cups of water
2 stalks of fresh pandan leaves (tie into knot)
1/2 cup of Gula Malacca (aka coconut sugar) or you may substitute with brown sugar
1 tiny slice of ginger


Step 1: Boil the water together with ginger and gula malacca.

Step 2: After boiled, put the pandan leave. Set aside.

Step 3: In separate bowl, mix all the ingredients of glutinous rice balls. Knead until combined together.

Step 4: Separate the dough into two. Use and filter natural food colour to mix both blue pea flower and raspberries, mix in one of the dough.

Step 5: Roll the dough into 10-12g each. Wrap with cling fim, set aside.

Step 6: Roll the filling into ball shape. Wrap them into the dough in step 5.

Step 7: Cook glutinous rice ball into syrup which prepared in step 2. Cook until the rice ball float on top of the syrup broth and it is done.

Step 8: Serve in the bowl.