Sunday, December 21, 2014

Mushrooms Character Tangyuans (Glutinous Rice Balls)

Tomorrow is Dongzhi (Winter Solstice). Have you made your tangyuan yet?  Did you make your tangyuan in the usual round shapes? I did them in round little balls as well as into cute little mushrooms.  Yes! You heard me right! Mushrooms shaped tangyuan? Who said tangyuan needs to be yuan yuan (round round) ones?

Which mushroom do you like best?

I like the white and yellow one most!

Last year I made marbled tangyuans and I thought they were too normal. I wanted to inject some creativity into my glutinous rice balls this year, hence made these. Hubby said the mushrooms shaped tangyuan looked cute but seemed inedible because they are too colourful, and that made them looked like some poisonous mushrooms. Hahaha! I ate them anyway!

Mushroom Shaped Tangyuan (Glutinous Rice Balls)

Desired amount of Glutinous rice flour

Enough water to be mixed with glutinous rice flour to form a pliable dough that could be rolled into small balls, yet is not too dry to touch and does not crack when rolled.

3 or 4 food colourings - your preference (adequate drops of colours for each portion of dough - remember that less is more, start with 1 or 2 drops first, add on if dough colour does not turn out to your liking)

5 to 6 Pandan leaves (torn into 2 strips each, fold whole bunch and gently secure with 1 piece of pandan leaf)

Brown sugar or caster sugar, to taste

1 or 2 slices of ginger, slightly flattened - optional

Water (for cooking)

1. Place desired amount of glutinous rice flour into a bowl, add some water to mix well with a rubber spatula. Add in more water if unable to form dough. If too much water has been added and mixture turns sticky, add some glutinous rice flour to dry out mixture and to form a pliable dough. Dough is ready for use when it is smooth and easy to knead without crumpling and cracking.

2. Divide dough into equal number of portions. Add in some drops of food colourings into each dough portion and mix well with rubber spatula. For me, I divided dough into 5 portions and used 3 food colourings - red, yellow and green. Made an orange dough with a drop of red and yellow food colouring mixed. Left 1 portion of dough white (without food colouring).
3. Roll out a small portion of preferred colour dough round and shape it into wild mushroom shape. Roll out little round dough with a different colour, flatten gently and gently press it on mushroom head. Repeat the same for other mushroom shaped glutinous rice balls.

4. Put adequate amount of water into pot, place in pandan leaves and bring to boil till slight pandan leaves fragrance is out - this is the soup base.
5. Add in brown sugar and stir to dissolve.
6. Gently drop shaped glutinous rice dough into soup base and stir gently to prevent it from sticking to base of pot. Lower to medium heat and let glutinous rice balls cook.  They will float when cooked.

Made some into the usual little colourful balls

7. Turn off fire and serve.

The above method is my lazy way of cooking tangyuan. If you do not like cloudy soup base due to cooking the tangyuans in them, you can cook them in a separate pot and spoon in the sweet soup over the tangyuan.


  1. Janice, hah..hah.. your mushroom shaped tang yuan are really so cute! I love them! But my grandma will freak out hah..hah...

    1. Thanks Phong Hong :) I thought my mushroom tangyuan looked poisonous and scary. I did it only for the fun, and called it quits after moulding and shaping 8 pcs wahahah. Guess my mum will freak out too if she sees me playing with the dough :P


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