Homemade Eight Treasure Rice (Babao Fan)

As some of you may know, Chinese New Years just passed (January 23). This year, it was the year of the dragon! Rawr!!

To celebrate Chinese New Years, we we had homemade Babao Fan at  a friend’s party (which literally translates to “Eight Treasure Rice”) for desert. It’s a traditional Chinese dish that has been made for centuries as a desert, and basically, the main ingredients are glutinous rice, red bean paste, and some dried or fresh fruit like raisins or cherries (optional).

Here is a picture of our delicious homemade Eight Treasure Rice:

Homemade Eight Treasure Rice (aka Babao Fan)

This won’t quite be like my other reviews because it is homemade unlike my other treats… but let’s get to it!

Presentation: Simple but colorful,and very unique. For some reason, I don’t think it really looks like a desert… maybe it’s just me.

Taste: I don’t think there is any treat out there in the in the world that I know of that tastes quite like the Eight Treasure Rice treat. This is a warm treat, about the temperature of a freshly baked double chocolate brownie (mmm!!). The rice part is sweet and very sticky because every thing is stuck together by a sticky syrup. Surprisingly, rice and syrup goes well together… who knows?

The red bean paste is probably my favorite part. It’s even sweeter than the rice (strange because usually red bean paste is bland), and it really gives the rice some flavor. If you’ve never had red bean paste before it tastes sweet and floury, sort of like marzipan.

I’m pretty sure the orange part was some for of fruit. I wouldn’t like the orange part by itsself, but as a whole, the sour part balances out the sweetness.

Price: It was homemade, so I can only tell you how much the ingredients cost. I would say that the ingredients could cost between 5 to 15 dollars depending on how many of the ingredients you have at home. ( I will have a link for a recipe on the bottom)

Overall: Pretty good! It’s unlike most deserts because of its Chinese origins. It is sweet, and warm, which can sometimes better than cold  desert like ice cream, especially on a cold winter evening!

It takes a considerable amount of effort to make, but it is a very unique and traditional treat that I think many people will enjoy.

Here’s a link to the recipe for Eight Treasure Rice: http://eggwansfoododyssey.com/2011/01/20/eight-treasure-rice-pudding-chinese-new-year-dish/ 

Note: The eight treasure rice treat in this review did not use this recipe, but it looks similar. Try it out though 🙂

Happy belated Chinese New Year!!