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Dongzhi Tang Yuan (Sweet Dumplings)

Dongzhi Tang Yuan


Dongzhi Tang Yuan (Sweet Dumplings) Recipe

Serves 4 | Prep Time: 20 Minutes | Cook Time: 20 Minutes


Ginger Syrup

1/3 cup sugar
1 1/2 cups water
2-3 pandan leaves or screwpine leaves, tie into a knot
One 2-inch piece ginger, peeled and slightly pounded with a cleaver

Glutinous Rice Dumplings

2 cups glutinous rice (sticky rice) flour
7 oz water
Red and Yellow food coloring


To prepare syrup, boil the water in a pot. Add the screwpine leaves and ginger and bring it to boil on medium heat until you smell and ginger and pandan leaves aroma. Add sugar and let it simmer for another 15 minutes minutes. Add more or reduce the sugar, to taste. Set aside.

In a big bowl, mix glutinous flour with water and knead with hands to form a dough. The dough is done when it doesn’t stick to your hands anymore.

Divide the dough into 3 portions, with the plain dough the biggest portion. Add 2-3 drops of each food coloring to make the pink and yellow dough.

Pinch the dough into small balls and roll them in between your palms into round balls. Set aside on a flat surface lined with paper or a slightly damp cloth.

Boil another pot of water, drop the dumplings into the boiling water. As soon as they float, transfer them into the syrup water. Serve immediately.

Cook’s Note:

Adjust the water level to the flour. Add more water if the dough is too dry. Add more flour if it’s too wet.

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8 COMMENTS... read them below or add one

  1. Patricia Huang

    Dear Bee
    I would like to commend the elders in your family who had/have passed on the recipes and culinary skills to you.Your recipes are sincere and easy to follow. I do cook and I am from Penang too so I am qualified to say that they are truly authentic and coming from your heart.
    I told my own daughters that they should refer to your recipes if they miss Malaysian food.
    Keep up the good work!
    God bless
    Aunty Pat

  2. Henry

    hi bee,

    i just finished with my tang yuan, thanks to you. the taste was good. but the color wasn’t so bright and the syrup wasn’t that clear either, unlike yours. any tips?

  3. I am so sorry to hear of your aunts passing but happy to hear of the traditions and memories she has left with you. I am an american who find great joy in learning and celebrating traditions from other cultures being that america does not have its own deep routed traditions. Thank you for sharing this recipe with us all. As I make this I will surly think of the memories you had of your aunt.

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