- Prepare four round tins by lining them with banana leaves (circumference and base). Use 5 to 6 leaves per tin. Leave enough leaf to extend above the tin so that it can be folded back around the rim of the tin. Tie with a rubber band. Brush the insides with oil. Set aside.
- Place sugar in the pot and slowly bring to simmer. Let it cook slowly until sugar starts to brown and caramelize (beware not to cook for too long or else it will be bitter).
- Spoon 2 – 3 tbsp hot water on the sides to loosen the crystallized sugar. Stir well and gradually add in the remaining water. Continue to stir until a clear brown syrup is formed. Rest sugar syrup until it is completely cooled.
- Add sugar syrup to the glutinous rice flour and stir until smooth. Sieve and pour into lined tins to about 3/4. Cover with tins with aluminum foil to prevent water from dripping into the Nian Gao.
- Using Panasonic Cubie Steam Convection Oven NU-SC100WMPQ, steam high for first 30 minutes and reduce to steam medium for the next 2 hours and 20 minutes. Remember to add water to the water tank. Remove tins from the Cubie Oven and wipe off water from aluminum foil.
- To serve, steam grated coconut with ½ tsp salt for 5 minutes.
- Shape Nian Gao into small balls and coat with freshly grated coconut.
- 380 g sugar
- 450 ml hot water
- 400 g glutinous rice flour
- Banana leaves for lining the tins (washed and blanched)