Singapore’s Ministry of Culture, Community and Youth shared a graphic to its Facebook feed showing the six types of popular Zong Zi (rice dumplings) from various dialect and ethnic groups in Singapore. Zong Zi are made of glutinous rice stuffed with a variety of fillings and wrapped in bamboo leaves, or other large flat leaves, and are cooked via steaming or boiling. In the U.S. you will see them on Chinese menus listed as sticky rice dumplings or steamed sticky rice with Chinese Sausage. Zong Zi are most commonly eaten during the Duanwu Festival, or Dumpling Festival or Dragon Boat Festival, which occurs on the fifth day of the fifth month of the Chinese lunar calendar, but this dish was also a form of “fast food” for many farmers working in the fields (much like the Pasty for Cornish miners). These rice dumplings can range from sweet and desert like with red bean filling, to savory and salty with pork belly and salted duck egg filling, to spicy and numbing with Sichuan peppercorn, chili powder, and preserved pork filling.
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