Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Pan-fried Glutinous Rice Cake Fans (Nian Gao/Tnee Kueh)

First of all, to all a belated
新的一年新的希望, 新的开始,新的展向
身体健康 龙马精神

This year, we celebrated Chinese New Year in Arizona with our family and friends who are living there.  As usual, I visited my aunt, and received glutinous rice cake as a gift.  Glutinous rice cake is made of glutinous rice flour.  In the olden days, they would actually have to soak the rice over night, then grind it the next day into a fine flour, or take it to the mill to be grounded, before making this sticky cake.  This is the Vietnamese version of glutinous rice cake, which I was not used to when I first moved to the States.  That's because my grandma used to make it herself and hers came out like bricks of dark, caramel colored jewels.  Oh, did I mention it always smells so, so wonderful when she's making em?  Oh, those good ol' days...

Having been gifted with a round of glutinous rice cake, I decided to do what my aunts do, pan-fry it with egg.  It's simple, it's sweet and slightly salty, it's chewy, and it's delicious too, although different from my grandma's.  And here's how...

1- Any shape is great, just slice it about 1/4-inch thick so it doesn't have to cook as long.
2- Eat it while it's warm, because it won't be as chewy when it's cold.

Pan-Fried Glutinous Rice Cake Fans

Glutinous rice cake, sliced into 1/4-inch thick, and slightly triangular in shape
1 egg
Pinch of salt
A little oil for pan-frying (about 1-2 tbsp)

Heat some oil in a frying pan over medium-low heat.
While the pan is heating up, break an egg in a small bowl and lightly beat with a pinch of salt.
Dip and cover the glutinous rice cake slices in egg, and place in the hot frying pan.
Turn the glutinous rice cake slices over in the pan about 30 seconds later.
It is ready when the egg looks golden brown and the glutinous rice cake slices are soft and bounces back when you poke it with your spatula.
Serve hot!

Happy Chinese New Year again to all, and best of wishes to everyone in the coming year!!


  1. Looks good! I have not have a white one before, but white one just used white sugar only mah. Since it's also a Vietnamese version, must taste similar to mine. I need to alter and play with that recipe next year.

  2. Thanks Ching, I haven't tried yours either ley, but from your blog sounds like it's not what you expected it to be ley...

  3. family favourite. I have never seen a white nian gao. But I'm sure they taste great fried with eggs, too. Thanks very much for sharing. MaryMoh at

  4. Hi Mary, thanks for dropping by. :) I've never seen a white nian gao before moving to the States, cuz M'sian ones are always caramel-colored right? :)

  5. When I was 10, I helped my granny lined the bamboo basket with banana leaves from her garden. She burned each joss-stick when steaming....acts like a timer to add more water into her wok for steaming , It took about 10 hrs to off the fire ....the smell was so good & colour was brown although she used white sugar. Those were the good old days.

  6. Good old days indeed, Christina :) My grandma used tin cans mostly, since she only had a few bamboo baskets. I remember we weren't allowed to ask how it's coming along. Pantang, she said. ^.^