Mum had her first try making Nian Gao using the Philips Pressure Cooker (PPC) last Chinese New Year. It was a big success and her Gula Melaka Nian Gao are the best in the world. The girls and I heart them to bits. The Nian Gao were often polished off in a jiffy and often not enough to satiate everyone.
Yesterday we finished off the last Nian Gao that’s been in sitting in our freezer for months. I was too lazy to prep it but I had to finish off that year-old Nian Goa to make space for another batch, which mum just made yesterday (in Ipoh). I can’t wait to dig into them!
How to Prep Steamed Nian Gao The Easy Way!
Actually prepping the Nian Gao ain’t too messy and difficult. I discovered a super easy way of prepping it.
When the Nian Gao is half thawed (thus not sticky), cut it into bite size pieces. Line baking paper on the steaming plate for easy cleaning as the aftermath on the plate can be very messy and sticky without the baking paper. Place the bite size Nian Gao on the lined plate and once the water starts to boil, put it on the steaming rack and steam for 5-8 minutes. Be careful not to over-steam the Nian Gao or it will melt and turn into a messy pile of sticky goo which is hard to pull out from the plate, not to mention looks disgusting 🤭.
Below – just out from the wok. As you can see, the Nian Gao pieces are still intact but they are already very soft. Poke through the Nian Gao with a toothpick to check the doneness. Coat the pieces of sticky cake with freshly grated young coconut and sprinkle a little salt (optional).
Steamed Nian Kao / Lin Ko / Kuih Bakul is my top favorite CNY snack, besides meat jerky. I do like the CNY cookies, bee hives and muruku too but now that I’m eating clean, I’ve stopped indulging excessively in these snacks. I still do give myself a treat in small quantities. After all, what’s CNY without indulging yourself in these once-a-year treats, right?
Mum’s freshly made Nian Gao, using the PPC:
What’s your favorite CNY snacks?
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