NIAN GAO ( Steamed Sticky Chinese New Year Cake )


             Nian Gao is a sticky steamed rice cake, made from glutinous rice flour and brown sugar. Usually this cake only eaten on chinese new year. They believe that this nian gao is a symbol of reunion of the family and bring a good luck for the family member. Althought it only a belief but there is no reason not to trust either.


         I made this nian gao last chinese new year but only publish the recipe now. Some recipe need to be steamed for several hour but for my opinion it doesn’t necessary. They used granulated white sugar instead of brown sugar and the reason why they steamed it for more than 2 hour is to caramelizes the sugar to get a nice brown colour for the cake…and another thing that i notices  is the longer you steaming the cake the softer and stickiest it will be. I prefer mine to be medium sticky that is why i only steam it for 1 half to 2 hour depends on it size. Again , this is only my humble opinion.. , i am not an expert…i believe they have a good reason for it and i still need to learn more.

NIAN GAO ( Steamed Sticky Chinese New Year Cake )    


Ingredient :

500 g glutinous flour
500 ml water
450 g palm sugar ( gula melaka )
35 g -40 g oil


1. Steam your banana leave for 20 min or until it soft. Wipe any access water on the surface. Line your baking pan with banana leaf neatly. Shining side on top or facing out. Grease your banana leave with oil. When i said neatly is to make sure all side of the pan is covered with banana leave. This is to prevent the batter from slip out from banana liner and result an ugly side of nian gao.

2. Heat water and brown sugar in medium pot. Keep stiring until brown sugar is dissolve. Turn off heat and let it cool completely .

3. Sift the flour in a large bowl. Pour cooled brown sugar mixture to the flour. Stir constanly. Strain the batter ( important step ) this is to removed some waste on the palm sugar and undissolve glutinous flour. Pour into the baking pan and steam for 1 half hour to 2 hour. Let it cool for 3 to 5 hour before cutting.  

♡ slice your nian gao to thin slice and dip with egg mixture and fry. It’s taste good too.



Tips: UPDATED!!!

1. You can store nian gao into freezer .
2. Add little oil to get a shiny nian gao. At the beginning i was thingking that the oil make my nian gao softer but i was wrong it make my nian gao more shiny and i loved it..
3. After a lot of experiment i can conclude that 2 hour is perfect for steaming nian gao.
4. Use medium heat only from the begining until you done.

Baking With Kelly