Discover Korean Food #23: Dr. Sook-Ja Yoon’s "Yaksik", Sweet Rice with Nuts and Jujubes

Yaksik is a sweet dish made with steamed glutinous rice, honey, soy sauce, jujubes, chestnuts and pine nuts.
It may also be called yakbap (medicinal bap).
It is said that yaksik was prepared and served to the crows as a reward for saving the king’s life in the Silla Dynasty.

Ingredients & Quantity
270 g (1½ cups) glutinous rice, 1.6 kg (8 cups) rice steaming water
Salt water: 45 g (3 tbsp) water, 2 g (½ tsp) salt
20 g (5 ea) jujube, 45 g (3 ea) chestnut, 3.5 g (1 tsp) pine nuts
Jujube stone tea: 5 ea jujube stone, 200 g (1 cup) water
Sweet steamed rice seasoning: 15 g (2½ tsp) soy sauce, 32 g (2 tbsp) sweet steamed rice sauce, 36 g (3 tbsp) yellow sugar, 0.5 g (¼ tsp) cinnamon powder, 6.5 g (½ tsp) jujube stone tea, 38 g (2 tbsp) honey, 24 g (2 tbsp) sugar6.5 g (½ tbsp) sesame oil
Sweet steamed rice sauce: 24 g (2 tbsp) sugar, 4 g (1 tsp) edible oil, 2 g (½ tbsp) starch powder, 45 g (3 tbsp) warm water

1. Wash the glutinous rice and soak in water for about 3 hours, drain water through a strainer for 10 min (330 g).
2. Wipe the jujube with damp cotton cloths, cut the flesh round and cut it into 6 pieces (16 g). Skin the chestnut and cut it into 6 pieces (30 g).
3. Remove tops of the pine nuts and wipe the nuts with dry cotton cloths.

1. Pour water into the steaming pot, heat it up for 8 min. on high heat. When it gives off steam, layer a damp cotton cloths on the bottom, put the glutinous rice and steam it for 20 min. Sprinkle salt water, mix well with wooden scoop, steam it for another 30 min.
2. Put the jujube stones and water in the pot, cover the lid and simmer it for 15 min. on medium heat, strain it (19 g).
3. Put the sugar in the pot, heat it up for 3 min. on medium heat. When the sugar melted, coat the pan with edible oil. When the sugar turns to brownish liquid, add the starch powder and boil it with stirring for 1 min. to make sweet steamed rice sauce.
4. While the steamed rice is still warm, add soy sauce, sweet steamed rice sauce, yellow sugar, cinnamon powder, jujube stone tea, honey, regular sugar and sesame oil into the steamed rice and mix them well. Mix them well again after adding chestnuts, jujube and pine nuts.
5. Put the mixture of above steamed glutinous rice into the steaming pot for steaming in boiling water, steam it for 10 min. on high heat. Then lower the heat to medium, steam for 20 min. mix it well. Reduce the heat to low, steam it for 20 min. mix it again to be admixed with seasonings evenly and steam it for another 10 min.

*To cook good taste steamed rice, rice should be steamed to be pretty tender, neither too hard nor too soft or watery.
*Steaming in boiling water would produce deeper brown colour, better taste and sweet smell.
*Two hours may be proper for steaming in boiling water.
*For the sweet steamed rice sauce, caramel sauce may produce good colour and sweet smell. 


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