Wednesday, 11 June 2008

ba cheng

ba cheng

A visit to my mum's favourite Chinese supermarket (Kong's Supermarket up the top of William Street in Northbridge) would often see us wandering home with yao chao gwai and these, sticky, savoury rice wrapped in lotus leaves. I've been eating them my whole life, watching my mother steam them and carefully unwrapping the leaves, but it wasn't until last week that I thought to ask what they were called. It's funny, the patterns we learn, and the habits into which we fall. I never needed to know what they were called until I wanted to blog about them and realised I couldn't call them by name.

We had dinner at Lotus about a week ago, and the proprietor waved her hand at the box. "Take for your mum," she insisted, so I took one for me and one for my mum, and turned to D. "Don't even talk to me about food," was the response, so I didn't.

Later, D protested that I'd not picked one up for each of us, so alas, I was compelled to share.

This ba cheng contained delicious sticky rice and a whole lot of mushrooms and it was great. I hope to try my hand at making the ba cheng sometime soon, but for now I am happy to settle for buying them and bringing them home. They take about ten minutes to cook, you can steam them in bamboo or in a steamer but do it on the stove, not in the microwave.

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