Chinese sticky rice is one of those rice dishes that seems intimidating but is actually quite simple to make with a little patience. I kept this as simple as possible and only used shitake mushrooms and Chinese sausage as the toppings but some other very popular additions include shrimp and egg.
Foolproof way to cook Chinese sticky rice
Methods I don’t enjoy
After soaking the glutinous rice, there are multiple methods you can go about cooking it. Many like to steam the rice which is a great option if you want plain sticky rice. Another way is to use a rice cooker, but I find there is too much guessing involved with the water levels. And more often than not, the rice gets stick together.
The foolproof method I use
There is a method called stir fried sticky rice which involves cooking the rice on a non stick pan. Slowly add 2 tbsp of water or stock into the rice and stir. Then cover with a lid for 2 minutes to steam. You want to repeat this process until the rice is cooked through. This is by far my favorite method because you can constantly check on the texture and add more or less water accordingly. The last thing you want is an overcooked, mushy place of sticky rice and this is the way I get it perfect every time.
How to prepare glutinous rice
Sticky rice aka glutinous rice has a distinct chewy texture to it. In order to achieve this result, you want to soak the rice in water for at least a few hours. This allows the rice to absorb moisture and cook evenly. In the picture below, I have already strained the glutinous rice and you can see that the grains are slightly larger and easier to break in half.
Dried shitake mushrooms and stock for Chinese sticky rice
Dried shitake mushrooms can be easily found in most Asian grocery stores. A quick way to rehydrate them is by soaking in boiling water, then covering with plastic wrap for 45 minutes.
You can do this while the glutinous rice is soaking as well. Once the mushrooms are rehydrated, squeeze out all the excess water in them and dice them up. You will want to reserve the mushroom stock used to rehydrate the mushrooms as the liquid to cook our rice.
Types of sausage in Chinese sticky rice
Chinese preserved pork sausage (lap cheong)
To me, this is the ultimate addition to any rice dish. It is a fatty, and slightly sweet sausage with a firm texture (from preserving) compared to most other types of sausage. I like to cut it up into smaller pieces because there is so much flavor and you want to maximize that throughout. You can find lap cheong in the preserved foods section at an Asian grocery store.
Chinese preserved liver sausage (yun cheong)
So if lap cheong is the younger, more likeably sibling then yun cheong is the older brother. They have the exact same texture and fatty content, however, yun cheong is more rich and less sweet. It’s a hard flavor to describe but together they work perfectly. Another non negotiable protein for my rice dishes. Here is a picture of what they look like after I cut them up:
Why use a nonstick pan?
Usually I use a non stick wok for my recipes, however, using a non stick pan will save a lot of trouble. When sticky rice is cooked, it tends to get…sticky. So if we do not use a non stick pan, the rice will stick and burn while it cooks.
Perfect Chinese Sticky Rice
- 1 large nonstick pan with lid
- 1½ cups glutinous rice
- 4 dried shitake mushrooms
- 2 cups reserved mushroom stock
- 1½ Chinese preserved pork sausage (lap cheong)
- 1 Chinese preserved liver sausage (yun cheong)
- 1 tbsp oil
- 1 tbsp soy sauce
- ½ tbsp dark soy sauce
- 1 tbsp oyster sauce
- 1 tsp sesame oil
- 1 stalk green onions
- Boil 2 cups of water and pour it over our dried shitake mushrooms. Cover with plastic wrap and let them soak for at least 45 minutes and up to overnight as well.4 dried shitake mushrooms
- Squeeze out the excess moisture in the shitake mushrooms and give them a dice. Reserve this mushroom stock for later.
- Dice up our two types of Chinese sausage as well.1½ Chinese preserved pork sausage, 1 Chinese preserved liver sausage
- Strain our glutinous rice which has been soaking for at least 3 hours.
- In our nonstick pan, add 1 tbsp of oil over med heat and add the diced mushrooms and sausage. Stir for 1-2 minutes.4 dried shitake mushrooms, 1 tbsp oil, 1½ Chinese preserved pork sausage
- Add the soaked glutinous rice and stir for 1 minute.1½ cups glutinous rice
- Reduce heat to med-low and add soy sauce, dark soy sauce, and oyster sauce. Stir for 1 minute.1 tbsp soy sauce, ½ tbsp dark soy sauce, 1 tbsp oyster sauce
- Add 2 tbsp of mushroom stock, stir, then cover with a lid for 1-2 minutes to steam. Repeat these 3 steps until the rice is cooked through, should take about 30 minutes. Be sure to only add stock as needed and if you run out of mushroom stock just add water.2 cups reserved mushroom stock
- Once the rice is cooked through, add sesame oil and green onions to top it off.1 tsp sesame oil, 1 stalk green onions
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