Did any of you catch a glimpse of these tang yuan on Mediacorp’s Channel 8 News a few days ago?
These are piggy tang yuan made for the Yuan Xiao Jie (元宵节), which falls on the 15th day of the Chinese New Year.
若想阅读中文版本，请在网页的右边 “Google Translate” 点击选择 中文简体 (Chinese Simplified）或 繁体 (Chinese Traditional) 翻译。可能食谱读起来会怪怪的，所以如果有疑问都可以问哦！
What is Tang Yuan?
Tang Yuan (汤圆) is a type of Chinese rice dumpling, made using glutinous rice flour and water. Tang yuan is usually eaten during Winter Solstice, or on the 15th day of the Chinese New Year.
To make these small bowls of chewy dumplings, some water will be mixed with the glutinous rice flour to form a soft pliable dough. We then roll them into small balls, to be cooked in a pot of boiling water, and then finally serve in a sweet dessert soup or syrup.
These days, we also enjoy eating the tang yuan “dry”, with some sugar peanut mixture – like mua chee!
This is a new recipe with super Q Q chewy dumpling skin. We really enjoy the dumpling skin, which tastes pretty much like mochi, so I am using a higher proportion of the skin. You can also refer to an easier recipe I have used previously, and adjust the proportion accordingly.
>> MORE TANG YUAN RECIPES:
Making of the Tang Yuan
These tang yuan are very easy to make – you can make the dough in under 20 mins! Yes, it’s that fast! It is usually the coloring part that is more time consuming.
For coloring of the tang yuan dough, you can use red yeast powder to tint it pink. For the snort and ears, you can add a little pink food gel color. If you are not comfortable with food coloring, you can do without it too!
For drawing of the eyes, you can add a little water to bamboo charcoal powder. Just a few drops will do, as we need a thick consistency to draw it on.
As you are making the tang yuan, keep a small bowl of water on the counter top. If the ball of tang yuan has creases, you can pat some water on it and roll the creases out. To seal the edges, you can also pat some water around the edges before sealing. This helps the tang yuan to seal better, and the filling is less likely to spill out during the cooking process.
Piggie Deco Tang Yuan 可爱小猪汤圆
- 65 g glutinous rice flour
- 28 g hot, boiling water
- 28 g room temperature water
- red yeast powder (or pink food coloring gel)
- bamboo charcoal powder mix with very little water (or black food coloring gel)
- 5 pcs balls of filling of your preference (about 12-15g each) frozen before use
- Place glutinous rice flour into a medium mixing bowl.
- Add in hot, boiling water in 1 go. Using a pair of chopsticks, mix the hot water into the flour. You will get lumps of flour, with majority of flour not mixed in.
- Now, add in the room temperature in 3-4 additions. Mix well using the chopsticks with each addition. Do note that different brands of glutinous rice flour will absorb different amount of water. I will suggest you reserve about 10g of the water and add little by little at the last stage.
- Using your hands, bring the dough (pic above) together into one big dough. If it becomes sticky due to too much water, add in more glutinous rice flour, little by little till dough is soft to touch, but not sticky.
- Using the red yeast powder, knead into the dough for coloring. If you do not have red yeast powder, you can use pink food coloring. Add in about 1/8 tsp. If color is not to your liking, add in little by little, as red yeast powder can bring quite a heavy color to the dough.
- Divide the dough into 22g x 5 pcs (you can adjust the ratio to your liking). You will have some remaining dough, which you can use to do the decorations. You may want to add in some pink food coloring gel to this remaining dough.
- Place a pc of baking paper, or wax paper onto the bottom of an airtight container. Roll the 22g dough into a ball, make a hole in the middle using your thumb. Thin the dough, from the hole using your thumb and first finger till it resembles a bowl.
- Add in frozen filling. It is always easier to wrap the filling when it is hard. Close the ball of dough and you can pat on some water on the area where you close the dough. Roll between your palms into a round ball.
- Place into the airtight container and cover the top of the container with cling wrap. Do not let the cling wrap touch the tang yuan dough.
- Repeat for all 5.
- Now, for the decorations. Roll out 2 small balls of dough. Using your finger, roll out one end to a tear drop shape. Flatten the tear drop dough and place on the top part of the prepared tang yuan dough to be the ears.
- For the snort, roll out an oval shape dough, flatten it. place onto the front part of the tang yuan dough. Using the flat part of a toothpick, make 2 holes as the "nostrils". If you find it difficult to stick the dough, you can use a thin brush and brush on a little water.
- For the eyes, you can use about 1/4 tsp of black bamboo charcoal powder. Add in 1-2 drops of water to mix into a thick paste consistency. Alternatively, you can also use black food coloring gel. Draw the eyes using a thin brush.
- Prepare a pot of boiling water. Place the tang yuan onto wooden spoon or ladle and gently ease it into the boiling water. Ensure the water stays at a steady boil. If the water is boiling very vigorously, the tang yuan may break. Also make sure the tang yuan do not bump into each other, or onto the sides of the pot.
- You may stir the water so that the tang yuan is moving in a circular motion and not bumping into each other.
- Serve in simple syrup, ginger tea, or on peanut sugar mixture.
This recipe makes really big tang yuan with 22g of dough. So if you would like a smaller size, you can reduce the filling and dough proportion. (But seriously, like this is more shiok! :p)
For a quick sweet soup, I also like to use Gingen ginger tea, as the ingredients are quite natural without additives.
Apologies on this quick post. I hope I’ll have time to add in step-by-step photos soon! In the mean time if you have any questions, feel free to leave a comment!