Thursday, 22 September 2011

Weird Science

There are a lot of weird Asian foods.

Nope, I'm not touching that. There are so many things I won't even discuss because they're too weird to think about.

But if you've ever thought about it, how many Asian desserts can you spout off the top of your head?

Of course there are things like deep fried green tea ice cream and maybe coconut or mango rice creations. But that's about it.

Really Asian desserts don't exist.

So today I am exploring the lesser known area of Asian desserts with gloves off.  Hopefully you like what I make, even if only for the creative factor. :)

Sesame Dumplings with Baked Rhubarb

1/4 cup black sesame seeds
1/4 cup sugar
3 tablespoons butter
1 cup glutinous rice flour
3/4 cup water
2 cups rhubarb, cut into 4 inch chunks
2 tablespoons sugar

1. Start with baking your rhubarb. Sprinkle 2 tablespoons sugar on rhubarb and bake at 350 degrees for about 20 minutes or until rhubarb begins to soften. Remove rhubarb from the oven and let cool slightly.

2. Next, start on the sesame seed dumpling filling. Crush sesame seeds using a mortar and pestle, leaving many seeds in large pieces. Transfer to a pan at medium heat with remaining sugar and butter and stir until a paste forms and thickens. Let this cool and harden. Set aside.

3. Mix flour with water in a medium bowl until a paste forms and no longer sticks to your hands.

4. Form 12 balls from the dough and press your thumb into the middle of each one to fill.

5. Fill each hole with a little of the sesame crunchies.

6. Pinch each dumpling shut.

7. And roll them into balls again.

8. Now you have a choice on how to cook the dumplings.

Choice 1: bring a pot of water to boil and cook the dumplings like you would pasta, when they float to the top they're done.

Choice 2: bring a pot of water to boil and place a cabbage leaf lined steamer on top, steam the dumplings until they are done.

I cooked mine in boiling water, but I think steaming them would taste better. Let me know if you try?

9. Now plate up and enjoy! If you have a little juice in the bottom of the rhubarb pan, spoon some on the plates too.

10. And if you have a bit of the sesame seed crunchy mix left, sprinkle a little around the plates too.

And whether it turns out to be to your taste or not, it's definitely worth trying as a fun-filled-Asian-night-science-adventure.

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