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Sweet Zongzi with Bean Paste

Dim Sum and Other Snack Foods

Sweet Zongzi with Bean Paste
2 Tablespoons sweet rice (also known as glutinous rice)
2 Tablespoons oil
2 Tablespoons lime water
36 dried bamboo leaves, approximately
10 ounces red bean paste
String to wrap them into packages
sugar, honey, or syrup (optional)
1. Wash sweet rice and soak in water overnight. Drain rice and add oil and lime water and mix well in a big bowl.
2. Wash and soak dried bamboo leaves. Trim the pointed ends so that three to four sheets put together lattice fashion form a rectangle with a pointed top like a pyramid. Keep leaves soaked in clean water until ready to use.
3. Divide the rice mixture into twelve equal parts. Put one part on one of the rectangles formed by three to four bamboo leaves.
4. Divide the red bean paste into six parts. Put one part of the red bean paste on top of the rice mixture already on the bamboo leaves. Add another part of the rice mixture on top of the red bean paste. Fold the bamboo leaves over length-wise and cover the rice pile. Bend the ends under on both sides and loosely tie a piece of string around the bamboo package. After tying up the package, shake it gently to see if you can hear the rice rattling inside. If you cannot hear any sound, the package is tied too tightly. Untie and do it over again.
5. When the materials are evenly distributed and wrapped, put the packages into a big pot and fill the pot with water to cover them. The ingredients should yield six large packages or twelve smaller ones. Then, bring the pot to the broil, lower the heat to medium, and cook them for about six hours. Use tongs to take out the packages. Untie and then unwrap them. Serve, or cool and store for later use.
Note: These packages freeze well. You can serve them with sugar, honey, or syrup.

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