I’ve had some personal things happen in my life the last couple of months that have been inspiring, trying, and eye opening. Within a short couple of months, I’ve had experiences and challenges that I have only had to deal with, if ever, once or twice in 30 years. All of these events have been hard as a friend, sibling, and loved one but nothing compares to what each person who is experiencing the event is going through. I’m in awe of their courage. However, this is not the reason for this post.
It’s the year of the snake. A year that allows for shedding of old skin and becoming a stronger self. From these events I’ve been able to reach out to family members and friends for advice, laughter, and company. So, although I’ve been missing from the blog the past couple of months, I’ve not forgotten it. As part of my moving forward, shedding all the old skin, and coming into my new self I’m re-doing my blog. I’ve had the same blog design for the last four years, and it makes sense to change the design as part of the year of the snake. This transition isn’t going to be instant. But I hope, by August 1st, the first day of my 30’s, that you will be looking at a newly designed blog.
Also, it was Duanwu Festival, or Dragon Boat Festival yesterday. So in honor of that, I’m pulling up an old post about Zong Zi, or Taiwanese Sticky Rice Dumplings, from a year ago. It’s important to note, this was definitely a video of firsts: First time I did a video post. First time I made this dish. First time I edited a video. First time I filmed a video. So, lot’s of firsts. But, in my defense it was a year ago, and I feel like I’ve improved. As you can see, it takes a long time to prepare everything and put it together, so if you decide to just buy it, that is ok, I won’t judge.
10 cups Sticky Rice, uncooked and soaking for 3 hours
1 cup dried salted shrimp, rehydrated
2 cups whole dried shitake mushroom, rehydrated
1 cup raw peanuts
2 cups of water
4 star anise pods
1 tbs salt
1.5 lb pork belly, cubed into 1 inch pieces
1/2 cup soy sauce
1/2 cup rice wine
1/4 cup brown sugar
4 large cloves garlic, peeled
35 bamboo leaves, soaking for 3 hours
~place peanuts, water, star anise, and salt in a small saucepan and boil on high heat until peanuts are soft, 15 minutes
~places garlic, brown sugar, rice wine, soy sauce, and pork belly in a large dutch oven and turn on low heat
~braise pork until fork tender, about 3 hours (can be done ahead of time)
Cooking the Zong Zi
~simmer 3 cups of water in a large pot on medium low heat
~place zong zi in pot until just covered by water (use the string to hold it up so they don’t float around)
~simmer for about 45 minutes or until the rice is fully cooked