Tuesday, 14 September 2010

Turmeric Glutinous Rice @ Nasi Kunyit ala Lyn

In the effort of wanting to try something new, I set myself the task of making Nasi Kunyit. Now, I wasn't told in the beginning how long it would take to make this. Little did I know that it would take the better half of the day to produce the perfect sticky consistency that the dish is known for to be eaten with the perfect curry. So for those sticky rice / glutinous rice peeps who wants to know...here's the recipe:


To soak together:
600 grams glutinous rice - washed and drained
enough water to soak glutinous rice in
2 - 3 pieces of assam gelugor 
4 cm turmeric root - skinned and crushed

For steaming:
30 whole white peppercorns (or a handful really)
300 ml coconut cream 
1/4 tsp salt
10 stalks of screwpine leaves / pandan leaves

  1. Firstly, after having washed and drained the glutinous rice, place it in a deep enough bowl or pot. Place the assam gelugor amongst the rice before filling it up with water. 
  2. The turmeric root should be skinned and crushed in a pastel and mortar to get the yellow colouring. Place this crushed turmeric root into a stainless steel sieve (plastic ones with absorb the yellow colouring) and place it in the glutinous rice for the rice to absorb the colour. You can take up to 20 minutes and constantly stir the sieve round the glutinous rice mixture to ensure evenness in the colouring. It acts like a staining agent.
  3. Soak the rice overnight (the best effect is at least 8 hours, if not 5 hours would do).
  4. Prepare your steamer. You have several methods to do this: Option 1 - 1 large pot, an upside plate that can go into the base of the pot and fill it up with water. Option 2 - 1 large pot, a steaming stand and water. Option 3 - a bamboo steamer on top of a wok with water or Option 4 - an actual electric steamer. For Options 1 to 3, ensure the water is thoroughly boiling before placing the glutinous rice in for steaming. Option 4 will automatically boil the water when activated.
  5. Drain the water from the rice and remove assam gelugor. Mix in the white peppercorns and spread in a large enough casserole dish or pan that has been layered with the screwpine leaves  for rice to be steamed. The first stage of steaming is 20 minutes.
  6. Whilst waiting for rice to be steamed, mix the coconut cream and salt together. Once the first stage is done, remove it from the steamer. In a mixing bowl, combine the steamed glutinous rice and coconut cream and mix thoroughly. Place it back into the casserole dish / pan for further 20 minutes of steaming. Top up the water should it have evaporated.
  7. Remove from steamer and let it cool. Serve with chicken curry, beef rendang or anything spicy really.
Just in case you're wondering how to layer the bottom of the casserole dish with the screwpine leaves, do what I did - weave them. It holds the leaves together and ensures that the fragrance of the leaves gets absorbed into the rice as well. At best, do this in advance if you have the time.

For my first attempt, this was indeed a fantastic yummy rice dish. It finished and I had to make white rice because there wasn't enough to go round. 

Anyone up for giving away first month baby gifts (traditionally Nyonya / Malaysian Chinese tradition), this would be the rice to be given away.

Now dreaming how to make Nasi Beryani,
The Innovative Baker

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