The Winter Solstice Festival falls on 21st December 2016 this year. Adzuki beans or red beans have very high nutritional value. They are rich in protein, iron, magnesium, vitamin B6 and calcium. Great for people with anemia, to replenish the body after menstruation or even after delivery of a baby.

Chinese people celebrate the arrival of winter solstice or the coldest time of the year by having a bowl of glutinous rice balls in sweet soup. Traditionally, the number of glutinous rice balls should correspond to one’s age to mark the passing of yet another year. Winter Solstice Festival is really just another excuse to spend quality time with family members and friends.

The preparation of glutinous rice balls is dependent on the region of one’s origin. Some prefer having glutinous rice balls in sweet soup made of peanuts, sesame seeds or brown sugar with ginger. While others enjoy their glutinous rice balls coated in dry peanut powder or with red bean paste filling. The variation is truly endless.


Portion: 2 servings


  1. 1 cup of Adzuki beans or red beans
  2. 1/4 cup of sugar
  3. Dry mandarin peel – optional
  4. 2 cups of water
  5. Pinch of salt
  6. 1 cup of glutinous rice flour
  7. 1/4 cup of water


  1. Soak red beans in cold water for 2 hours.
  2. Boil red beans together with mandarin peel in 2 cups of water for 1.5 hours until beans soften. Add more water when necessary. The bean soup should not be too runny. Remember to remove mandarin peel.
  3. Add sugar and a pinch of salt.
  4. Prepare glutinous rice dough by adding 1/4 cup of water to a cup of glutinous rice flour in an empty bowl. Depending on humidity, more water may be needed.
  5. Roll dough into small balls about 2 cm in diameter.
  6. Cook glutinous rice balls in boiling water until they float to surface.
  7. Drain rice balls and transfer them to a bowl of red bean soup.
  8. They taste even better with a scoop of vegan green tea ice-cream.


Lots of Love,




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