This a simplified version of a Chinese dessert called tang lian’ou, in which sticky rice is stuffed into the holes of a whole lotus root, and then the entire assemblage is boiled in sugar water, then sliced. You can achieve the same basic effect with a sweet congee, with the added flavor of dates.
Sweet Lotus Root and Sticky Rice Congee
Yield: 8 servings
- 1 lb lotus root
- 3/4 cup sticky rice
- 100 g rock sugar OR 1:1 mix of white and brown sugar
- 5-10 dried dates
- Place sticky rice in a bowl, fill bowl nearly to top with water, and soak for 2 hours.
- Peel lotus root and cut into 1/4-inch slices.
- Cut dried dates in half with scissors, making sure to avoid the pit. If you want, you can cut out the pit. Or you can just chew carefully.
- Drain sticky rice and place in large pot. Add lotus root slices, sugar, and dried dates into pot.
- Pour in enough water to cover all the ingredients.
- Bring to a boil.
- Simmer, covered, and stir occasionally, until the lotus root slices and sticky rice reach desired softness. (I simmered the congee for 1 hour.)