My Mom’s Baked Coconut Sticky Rice Red Bean Paste Cake is perfect for celebrating Chinese New Year. The sweet bean paste filling makes this sticky rice cake extra special.
Chinese New Year is next Monday, so I’ve been digging through my mom’s sticky rice recipes. It’s the year of the Monkey (my oldest son and my sister are both monkeys!). If you were born in the years 1920, 1932, 1944, 1956, 1968, 1980, 1992, 2004, 2016, then you’re a monkey. Monkeys are supposed to be witty, intelligent, and have a magnetic personality. They are also mischievous, curious, clever and naughty (they like to play practical jokes – that’s definitely my son!)
Last year, I made my mom’s Coconut Milk Sticky Rice Cake recipe, which my mom made when I was growing up. This year, I wanted to try another of her sticky rice recipes. I have a binder full of her recipes, and I created a section called “Sticky Rice Recipes” because she has so many of them. My mom loves sticky rice, can you tell?
A few years ago, I made my first baked sticky rice cake (it’s my Aunt Florence’s Baked Coconut Sticky Rice Cake.) Traditionally, sticky rice cake is steamed, but the baked version is easier to make if you don’t have a big steamer. So, when I spotted my mom’s recipe for Sticky Rice Bean Paste Cake which is also a baked sticky rice cake, I wanted to try it. It sounds similar to the one my aunt makes, but has a filling of red bean paste, which is essentially sweetened pureed adzuki red beans. Red bean paste is very popular in Asian desserts.
Sticky rice is considered good luck for Chinese New Year because it’s symbolic of family cohesiveness, and it’s Chinese characters sound like “getting higher with each year,” implying prosperity in business, better grades, and promotions. This recipe calls for sweet rice flour, which is not actually sweet, but is ground up rice that has a sticky quality when cooked.
My mom’s recipe calls for milk as the liquid, but I swapped coconut milk for the milk, adding some water to thin it out to more of a milk consistency.
I shipped off half of this Baked Coconut Sticky Rice Red Bean Paste Cake to my parents to share the Chinese New Year. Happy Chinese New Year Mom and Dad!
Mom's Baked Coconut Sticky Rice Red Bean Paste Cake
- 3 eggs
- 1 1/2 cups organic sugar
- 1 can coconut milk + enough water to make 2 1/2 cups in total
- 1/2 cup flavorless oil
- 1 pound ~ 4 cups sweet rice flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 can red bean paste
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
In a large bowl, beat eggs; add sugar, coconut milk/water, and oil and beat until blended. Sift together sweet rice flour and baking powder. Add to liquid mixture and mix well.
Pour half of batter into lightly greased 9" square pan. Bake for 10-15 minutes.
Take pan out of the oven and spread red bean paste on top.
Pour remaining batter into pan and spread over red bean paste.
Bake another 35-40 minutes until lightly browned on top.
If you like this Baked Coconut Sticky Rice Red Bean Paste Cake, you might also like these two sticky rice cake recipes:
If you’re interested in learning more about Chinese New Year traditions, read this old post.
If you’re planning on celebrating Chinese New Year, try these Chinese dumplings (symbolizing wealth since they resemble the shape of gold ingots), noodles (long life), chicken (a whole chicken symbolizes family unity), and other “good luck” foods. Chinese Hot Pot is also a great way to celebrate Chinese New Year.