The story appears on

Page B5

March 1, 2012

GET this page in PDF

Free for subscribers

View shopping cart

Related News

Home » Feature » iDEAL

Mung bean cake a delicate summer treat

LUDOU gao (绿豆糕), mung bean cake, is a popular snack around China, especially in early summer.

As its name indicates, the most important ingredient is mung bean powder, mixed with pea powder, sugar and sweet-scented osmanthus flower.

After mixing everything with water, the dough-like substance needs to be shaped in small cubes and steamed. A good mung bean cake has a subtle, fresh taste and is light green or yellow in color.

As the cakes are common in China, there are different styles. The two main strains are the northern and southern styles.

Beijing mung bean cake is typical of the northern style, which is made without oil. The cake is dry and tastes fluffy.

The southern style - Suzhou and Yangzhou mung bean cakes - uses oil, which contributes to its greasy taste. It may also contain such stuffing as sweetened bean, red date or sesame paste.

The mung bean cakes in Shanghai mainly follow the southern style.

According to traditional Chinese medicine, mung beans help relieve internal heat, quench thirst and are good for detoxifying the body. Thus, mung bean cake is considered a healthy food with the same benefits.

The best season to eat mung bean cake is early summer, around the Dragon Boat Festival (this year it's June 23). It was one of the most beloved snacks during the festival in the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911).

Every year before the Dragon Boat Festival, traditional restaurants such as Wangjiasha and Gongdelin will produce fresh mung bean cakes. Also, some Western bakeries are making the snack nowadays, adding new flavors such as pumpkin.


Copyright © 1999- Shanghai Daily. All rights reserved.Preferably viewed with Internet Explorer 8 or newer browsers.

沪公网安备 31010602000204号

Email this to your friend