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Salty Zongzi

Dim Sum and Other Snack Foods

Salty Zongzi
2 pounds sweet rice (also known as glutinous rice)
1 teaspoon oil
2 pounds mung beans
1 Tablespoon sugar
4 ounces dried shiitake mushrooms
2 teaspoons salt
8 salted egg-yolks
8 fresh chestnuts, peeled
2 teaspoons five-spice powder
4 ounces of lotus seeds, cleaned
2 teaspoons thin soy sauce
24 dried bamboo leaves
8 dried lotus leaves
1 pound roast pork, cut into eight pieces (optional)
String to wrap them into packages
1.Wash and soak rice and mung beans separately in clean water overnight. Drain each ingredient separately, and set aside.
2. Add oil, sugar, and salt to rice and mix well. Then divide the rice mixture into sixteen parts. Divide the mung beans into sixteen parts and set aside for later use.
3.Prepare the leaves by washing and soaking both the lotus leaves and the bamboo leaves. Then trim the lotus leaves, or fold each one into a square and remove or trim the pointed ends of bamboo leaves.
4. Put three bamboo leaves on top of one square of lotus leaf.
5. Clean and cut the stems off shiitake mushrooms and soak them in clean warm water until they are soft. Remove and discard the stems.
6. Prepare the (roast pork,) lotus seeds and chestnuts, as follows: If using dried lotus seeds, pre-soak them until they are soft; discard any bitter shoots inside. Cook the chestnuts until soft.
7. Put the (roast pork,) chestnuts, lotus seeds, and mushrooms in a bowl and add five spice powder and soy sauce and mix them well and divide this mixture into eight equal parts.
8. On the stack of lotus and three bamboo leaves, put one part of rice mixture, one part of mung beans and (one part of the roast pork mixture and on the pork mixture) add one salted egg-yolk. Put another part of mung bean on this and then another of the rice mixture.
9. Pick up the four sides of the leaves and wrap the mixture into a cube-like package and tie it up with some of the string.
10. Repeat Steps 9 and 10, making these packages until all the materials are used. This makes eight packages.
11. Put the packages into a big pot and fill with enough water to cover. Bring the water to a boil, reduce the heat to low and simmer for about seven hours. Drain and either serve, refrigerate, or freeze the packages until ready to eat them. Before eating, remove the string and leaves, and serve.
Note: In the North, people use soy sauce as a dip; in the South, some prefer theirs with granulated sugar.

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