Ingredients (makes two serves):
½ cup of white sticky rice
½ cup of black sticky rice
4 roasted cashews (whole)
12 roasted pinenuts (whole)
4 roasted peanuts (chopped in half)
4 roasted almonds (chopped in half)
2 boiled dates
1–2 tbs red-bean paste
¼ cup sugar (for sauce)
3 tbs sugar (for rice)
1 tbs starch
2 dashes of osmanthus flower syrup (available from most Asian grocers)
Note: The white and black rice need to be cooked separately.
Pour the white sticky rice into the rice cooker. Hand-wash the white sticky rice by adding cold tap water to it and gently stirring by hand. Drain and repeat until the washed water becomes clear. (Be aware to not throw all the rice away when draining. The trick is to be patient!)
Add water to the rice cooker (water level should be approximately one inch above rice level) and steam the rice. Once cooked, scoop out the white sticky rice into a clean bowl. Let the white sticky rice cool as you cook the black sticky rice.
Repeat the previous preparation and cooking method with the black sticky rice.
By now you should have two bowls of sticky rice, one white, one black.
Mix both the white and black sticky rice into one bowl with three tablespoons of sugar and one tablespoon of oil. Mix well (without crushing the rice, though). Taste to see if it is sweet enough, then put aside.
Take a new small bowl (or ramekin) and coat with oil. Loosely mix and then halve these ingredients: roasted almonds, cashews, peanuts, pinenuts, sultanas and boiled dates.
Place one half of the fruit-and-nut mix at the bottom of the bowl. Add a layer of the white and black sticky rice mix (about 2 inches thick). Add red-bean paste in the middle (about 1½ tablespoons or to taste). Add the white and black sticky rice mix on top to cover, and flatten the top. Repeat the steps above with the remaining fruit-and-nut mix, rice mix and red-bean paste.
Place bowls in a steaming basket large enough to fit both, cover with the lid and steam both bowls for one hour. Stick a chopstick through to feel if they are soft. Using a spoon, carefully trace the outline of the inside of the bowls to unstick the rice. Flip the both bowls upside down to remove the pudding and present on a separate plate (be careful! The bowl is very hot. Use a wet tea towel!).
Making the osmanthus sauce (optional)
Using a new bowl, mix ¼ cup of sugar, 1 teaspoon of starch and a pinch of osmanthus. Add enough water to create a syrupy consistency and quickly stir thoroughly to avoid clumps.
Drizzle over both puddings, and serve with optional coconut ice cream. Enjoy with tea and a buddy.
This piece was produced in partnership with the new CONNOISSEUR Empire Collection, which includes the Emperor Jing Zong ice cream with red bean and coconut.