Level 1, Grand Millenium Kuala Lumpur,
160 Jalan Bukit Bintang, Kuala Lumpur.
Tel: 03-2177 4219
For reservations and enquiries, email lcy.gmkl@milleniumhotels.com
or visit the restaurant?s Facebook page at www.facebook.com/laichingyuen.

ON THE subject of rice dumplings like bak zhang or zongzi, it is said that Chinese peasants cast these leaf-wrapped treats into the river where statesman-poet Qu Yuan had committed suicide, to prevent fish from eating his body.

Traditionally made from glutinous rice, these dumplings are the traditional offering on the fifth day of the fifth month of the Lunar Calendar and Grand Millenium Kuala Lumpur?s Lai Ching Yuen Restaurant has prepared a range of dumplings for patrons to savour.

Led by dim sum chef Thye Yoon Kong, the range comprises three savoury recipes and one dessert. These dumplings are big and would be best shared, although if you can finish it alone, why not?

This review begins with chef Thye?s recommended Traditional Rice Dumpling with Dried Scallops and Roasted Duck, priced at RM48, which is a perennial favourite among patrons.

The rice dumpling also contains traditional filling comprising pork belly, roast pork, salted egg and mung beans, mushrooms, chestnut and Chinese sausage, among others.

For a rich aroma, mei gui lu (Chinese rose essence wine) is added.

The Rice Dumpling with Pork Belly and Preserved Vegetables (mei cai), came next and are priced at RM38 per piece.

This recipe has also been modified from last year?s offering, to include Chinese sausage and plum fragrance.

For added filling, Thye has also included yellow beans.

For best results, these two dumplings should be taken together with Thye?s specially concocted soy sauce, which is mixed from three types of soy sauces and cooked with coriander for a aroma.

Then, there is also shrimp belacan, which goes well with either the Traditional Rice Dumpling or the Hakka Rice Dumpling, also priced at RM38.

Certain ingredients are common in most dumplings and the Hakka version is no exception, with items such as roast pork, salted egg and chestnuts included.

But Thye modifies it further with items such dried shrimp and shredded clams thrown in, as well as red beans for taste and texture.

Dessert rice dumplings are usually alkaline water (lye water) dumplings and the final offering, Sweet Glutinous Rice Dumpling with Red Bean Paste, RM18 a piece, does not disappoint. Brilliant yellow, the dumplings are spongy and are usually eaten with sugar or something syrupy.

Lai Ching Yuen?s rice dumpling promotion is from May 22 to June 12, and is available for dining in, takeaway or both.

The restaurant is a non-halal Chinese restaurant, and is open daily from 12pm to 2.30pm (lunch) and 6.30pm to 10.30pm (dinner).

This is the writer’s personal observation and is not an endorsement by StarMetro.

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