Recipe : Rice wrapped in lotus leaf

I am so pleasantly surprised that my first attempt at making this turned out so well. Usually, the only time I get to eat rice wrapped in lotus leaf is at Chinese weddings or dim sum restaurants.

It being an economical event (i.e. Chinese sit-down dinners), the ingredients are usually pretty standard. As for the dimsum servings, I do not fancy eating rice in the morning, preferring dainty dimsums instead.


2 cups glutinuous or sticky rice – soak for at least 3 hours

1 cup normal rice

300 grams meat (preferably with some fats) seasoned with soya sauce, five spice powder, Chinese wine, dark soya sauce

5 Chinese dried mushroom – soaked and cut into quarters

1 handful of dried shrimps

Pound 5 garlics and 10 shallots

Optional ingredients :

15 dried chestnuts (soak overnight, remove reddish husk)

1 pair of Chinese sausage (or if available, waxed duck)

3 dried scallops, soaked and break into pieces

5 dried oysters – soaked and cut into smaller pieces

3 salted duck eggs yolk, cut into quarters

(remember that these are optional, so you can either ignore or use whatever is available).

Method :

Soak two lotus leaves till soft (takes a few hours). Boil some hot water and put the leaves in plus add some oil. Wash the leaves under running water.

Fry pounded garlic and shallots till fragrant. Add dried prawns. Then, add in meat, mushroom and all the ingredients. Pour in rice with some water and continue stirring. Add some dark soya sauce, light soya sauce, pepper and once mixed, turn off fire.

Let the rice cool a bit for easier handling.


Put the lotus leave in a huge bowl, pour in the rice mixture. wrapped it up and steam. It may takes about 3 hours! But I did it within 30 minutes. The chestnuts were fluffy too. (Omit chestnuts if you are using normal steamer because it is hard to cook.)


The rice, when ready, looks very stylish. It will be very impressive to serve at potlucks. The lotus leaves can be easily cut open to reveal the rice. It is really delicious because the lotus leaves lend the special aroma to the rice.


I am going to try making lotus leaf wrapped chicken next. It is rather fun to wrap the huge leaves. Surprisingly, the leaves are very tough and not easily torn. Give it a try and tell me your experience.

*thanks to one of the commentor in my earlier post , Sharon who gave me tips on preparing the leaves. I made sure the leaves were oily and hence, the rice did not stick to the leaves. I use only minimal oil in my rice, unlike those from the restaurants which is usually very, very oily.*

21 Replies to “Recipe : Rice wrapped in lotus leaf”

  1. wah very nice 🙂 looks very delicious. I should try that when I can get some lotus leaves. How much water did you put in Lilian???

  2. Looks so good! 🙂 I don’t like rice very much so can’t wait for your lotus wrapped chicken! Can do it with the same leaves they use to wrap bak chang? But those a bit too small huh? But do you think it could work with small pieces of chicken?

  3. Haha.. is me… first reply 😀

    I’m still not having my b’fast yet.. drooling !!!
    May I know where did you get the lotus leaf? R u using pressure cooker to steam the rice?

  4. Inevitable – Hahaha.

    Lay See – Bought from Kwong Tuck in Campbell St., next to Woo Hin. They sell all the expensive China products. I think in wet markets, those stalls selling dried seafood also got sell. I got a new pressure cooker, WMF brand bought from Parkson during the last sale. RM999.

    Sue – Sure will show you a pic. when I do it.

    babe – It really is simple. Just gulung up the whole thing.

    romantic – When I fry the rice, I did not add water but it is rather moist from the soaking. As for the water in the pot, it is as high as the trivet allows. I put a trivet (like a base), put on a steamer (that comes with the WMF) tray and that’s it.

    Celestine – I belanja you when you come to Penang.

    boo – The leaves is really fragrant.

    pik – 🙂

  5. Lilian,

    just want to ask you the recipe here is for how many servings? Plan to try it out one of these days, but scared too much can’t finish 🙂

  6. Hi nice site you have here and mouth watering recipe. Im also bloggin on my recipe collection maybe you might wanna peek. Thanks and goodluck

  7. can someone tell this amateur cook what is dried chestnut in cantonese or hokkien? i am dying to try this dish. Also. where do i get lotus leaves from?

  8. mom2one – Lat chee (as in those sold in roasted chestnuts?) But this one dry and needs to be soaked for a while. The lotus leaves only found from those old-old Cantonese grocers selling China foodstuffs, maybe from Petaling Street? You can get the chestnuts from the place where you buy the lotus leaves. good luck!

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