Chinese New Year Cake – Nian Gao

Chinese New Year Cake or “Nian Gao” 年糕 is a must have new year necessity in Chinese New Year. It symbolise a raising of oneself taller in each coming year. It’s a sticky sweet snack made of  glutinous rice flour, sugar and some other ingredients.

In those days, the process of making Nian Gao is bounded with taboo, whereby the person who make the cake must speak good words and think of good things all the time while in the process of making Nian Gao. Failure to comply with the taboo will result the cake turn to failure. Well, this is something said by the oldie in those days.

During the visit to Penang Chinese New Year Cultural & Heritage Celebration 2013 event, I only managed to catch up with the back end process of making the cake. Therefore, I can’t share on how the flour, sugar and etc is mixed. Anyway, I still able to share some back end process with whatever photo I managed to snap.

Chinese New Year Cake / Nian Gao

The size of the cake is determined by the can itself. Usually the maker will use the condensed milk cans as the cake mould  However, to some professional cake maker, they will use some other customized size aluminium cans as the mould. The mould is then covered with banana leaf. The mixture of flour is then put into the mould before put into steamer.

Chinese New Year Cake / Nian Gao

This is the steamer for Nian Gao. It takes a few hours to steam the cake.

Chinese New Year Cake / Nian Gao

The cake is cooked after few hours later. This is the outcome of the cake. It left a side to bring down the temperature to ambient temperature before packing.

Chinese New Year Cake / Nian Gao

This is the final product of Nian Gao. A cake with sweet and sticky is ready to eat now!

Author: seehong

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