Was down with a bad flu since mother’s day weekend but the minute I felt better, was at the market shopping for ingredients to make bazhang. By the way, bazhang is pork dumplings, the actual day this year is 30 May 2017, on which I shall be out of town. It occurs every year on the 5th day of 5th month of the Chinese calendar.
1 kg glutinous rice, 1 kg pork collar, 100 gms dried prawns, 100gms dried shitake mushrooms, 200gms chestnuts, 80gms sweetened winter melon, garlic, bazhang leaves, some pandan (screwpine) leaves, strings for tieing bazhang.
The bulk of work is in preparation to make the dumplings.
1) Soak the rice in water for at least 4 hours.
2) Whilst rice is soaking, wash and soak the leaves and strings to soften for ease of use later.
3) Boil a pot of water to scald the pork pieces before all the marination. Marinate pork with Chinese 5 spices, salt and pepper (heavy dosage), light and dark soya sauces and fish sauce. Marinate for about 4 hours.
4) Soak the shitake mushrooms till plump and soft. Boil them to further soften the mushrooms. Also boil the cleaned chestnuts.
5) Chop garlic, cut the winter melon into cubes, wash the dried prawns, lay them out ready for wrapping the dumplings.
The fun really begins now, when I can make the bazhang, aka by using the leaves to wrap all the goodies within the pyramid shaped dumpling and tie them together using strings.
1) Make a cone
2) Fill in a spoon of rice
3) Pick a piece of pork, a piece of mushroom, a chestnut, some dried prawns, some pieces of winter melon.
4) Cover the top with a spoon or two of rice.
5) Wrap it into a triangular pyramid and use a string to tie it up.
6) Tie using strings.
7) When there’s enough on a bunch, neaten them before submerging in boiling water.
8) In a pot of boiling water, submerge the bazhang for 1 to 1 1/2 hours.
9) After boiling, hang them up to dry and you could immediately serve warm dumplings. Enjoy 😍😍.