Red sticky rice


There’s something that’s viscerally appealing to lớn brightly coloured food. Maybe it’s the resemblance khổng lồ beautiful flowers, or maybe that it strikes the more carnal pleasure centres… the flushed pink & blush red. In any case, brightly coloured food is not so easily obtained without the harsh and dangerous chemicals we’ve engineered to lớn be “food safe”. But xoi gac aka red sticky rice, one of my favourite breakfast foods ever, gets its signature vermillion from baby jackfruit.

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Some makers use a combination of red and yellow food colouring to lớn give it an orange hue, but you can tell when it uses baby jackfruit when there are seeds (from the jackfruit) & when the colour is not quite so even. You can also see bits of the fruit pulp in between the rice grains, while artificially coloured sticky rice will just be orange và plain looking. There’s only a subtle flavour of sweetness, either brought out more with sugar or contrasted with salt. Some makers will make it much more savoury or even more sweet, my recipe sits in the middle because I like it a little sweeter but not cloyingly sweet that my family cannot eat it with Vietnamese ham.


They make this a lot for special events lượt thích weddings và Vietnamese New Year celebration because the bright red colour is lucky in Vietnamese culture. That’s why Vietnamese và Chinese New Year share the same red envelopes used khổng lồ give lucky money, và it’s used just about everywhere during the first couple months of the year. Think of how Christmas is basically red and green shoved in every place possible, but replace that with gold-laced red. New year is supposed to lớn start with as much luck & good fortune as possible.

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It’s funny that the Western colour for luck is green, while less positive connotations like greed come to lớn mind when green is used in Vietnamese culture. Funny enough, green is common in both cultures when it comes to lớn envy or jealousy. I wonder why that is. Growing up, I associated green with cold and selfishness until I was introduced lớn the Western associations of colour.


There are lots of other types of sticky rice (I’m sure they’ll show up here at some point) but the main common ingredient is glutinous rice. Worry not, celiac and gluten-sensitive friends, this rice is lượt thích any other rice in the sense that it’s gluten-free. It’s just called glutinous because it is “gluey”. Hence the sticky rice moniker.

To make this, you need to lớn use a pot with a steam layer (aka steamer). Some people may have those bamboo steamers, which would work, but it’ll be a lot harder to lớn manage than if you had a stainless steel steamer. If you use a bamboo steamer, line it with a clean, oiled banana leaf lớn keep the rice from sticking khổng lồ the bottom of the bamboo steamer, và I’m not quite sure what make of steam pot my grandma has, but she got hers from Chinatown. If you want to see a type of steam pot, check out Farberware Classic Stainless Steel 3-Quart Stack ‘N Steam Saucepot & Steamer

 (affiliate link).

This is my last post of 2013, và I want to lớn truly thank you for reading along with JSA! It’s been a wonderful year with so many new things and changes, & I couldn’t have done it without you guys. Happy New Year! Chuc mung phái mạnh moi!