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Nian Gao “Onde-Onde”

Don’t these bite-sized morsels remotely resemble onde-onde (popular Nonya kuih)? They are actually nian gao in disguise. With the leftover nian gao I have from making pan-fried sweet potato nian gao, I decided to try something different from the pan-fried versions I am more familiar with.

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Nian gao becomes soft and sticky after steaming, so you can easily roll them in the grated coconut. Though they are not perfectly shaped or taste like real onde-onde, they do taste good. My family who have a sweet tooth loved this version, but for me, it’s a little too sweet for my liking. If I were to remake this dish, I would buy freshly grated coconut from the market, instead of the packet desiccated ones I picked up from the supermarket which is “stiff” and not as soft as I would like it to be.

Step-by-Step Photos

Scatter a 1-cm layer of grated coconut on a plate with a pinch of salt. Toss to coat evenly. Arrange cubed nian gao one layer on top of grated coconut without overlapping.

Steam at high heat for about 8 minutes. Using a pair of kitchen tongs, roll each cube in the grated coconut.

Nian Gao Onde-Onde

9 comments on “Nian Gao “Onde-Onde””

  1. Cute and yummy treat!

  2. Oh that’s an interesting experiment with nian gao! We have plenty leftover and while I love the fried eggy version, this sounds like a great alternative. Plus here in N California, it’s hard to find onde onde! So any form of substitute works too. Thanks for the great idea.

  3. yum!! Those look amazing.. so soft and sweet

  4. Hi! I like this although fresh coconut would taste better than the dry dessicated type. I used to eat nian gao this way when I was young!

  5. It also looks like those Nonya kueh – tapioca kueh in grated coconut! I like all those kuehs and you have a creative way to make some using nian gao!

  6. I loved this way of eating nian gao too. If we make our own nian gao, it is very soft on the first day so I can just slice it and coat it with ground peanuts + sesame seeds and eat it.

  7. What a creative creation. :) Very good use to Nian gao and transform them to another treat. Yeah, I think you’re right. Freshly grated coconut sounds good and easier to roll here. :) Too bad I don’t have any Nian Gao left overs, otherwise I would definitely make these.

  8. This looks like a great sweet treat! Sounds lovely with freshly grated coconut too.

  9. Oh my! This is absolutely delicious!

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