One of my favourite clients recently asked my test kitchen team to create a classic rice and barbecued pork stuffed lotus leaf recipe for her publication. I’d never made this dim sum classic before so, I got right on the job, researching a variety of recipes and buying a prepared sample from T&T supermarket to compare to our test kitchen results.
Although I’m by no means a dim sum expert, my family loved the finished recipe so much that I’ve made variations of the original at home a couple of times already. Once I combined the sticky rice with pieces of Chinese roasted duck blended with gingery mushroom
stir-fry and once I made a vegetarian version that combined rice with teriyaki sauced stir-fried vegetables.
While we like the flavours and that’s reason enough to make these little bundles again soon, I also still have quite a few dried lotus leaves to finish up (one leaf makes four bundles – they are huge!). Another good reason to make rice stuffed lotus leaves is that these yummy bundles can be made a day or two in advance and steamed any time – a bonus for busy parents and hosts who like make ahead recipes!
Although I can’t give you the detailed recipe yet (my client hasn’t published the original), here are the basic steps to follow when stuffing lotus leaves:
• Quarter dried lotus leaves
• Soak in hot water for 1 hour
• Blot dry and cut into quarters
• Lay leaves dark green side down
• Mound some cooked sticky rice on each leaf. Top with stir-fried yummies of your choice
• Top with another mound of rice and mold using wet hands
• Wrap leaf tightly around food
• Refrigerate until ready to heat in a parchment paper- or cabbage leaf-lined bamboo or other steamer.
Until I found this video, I was cutting my lotus leaf bundles open with scissors. Looks like I still have more to learn!