Originally posted December 12, 2011

oily rice (you fan)

oily rice (you fan) by Amah

A lot of people call this sticky rice because it uses sweet rice, but in Chinese it's actually called oily rice. Today, we eat it on special occasions, but traditionally it's made when a son turns one-month old. At this time, his parents cook oily rice and boiled eggs colored with red dye, and they send them to relatives, friends, and neighbors. It serves as a birth announcement. People used to say, "Let's eat oily rice," meaning let's have a boy.

What happens if you have a girl? You keep quiet. You give neither oily rice nor red eggs.


  • 5 rice cups of sweet rice, uncooked
  • 2 oz dried sliced shiitake mushrooms
  • 1/4 cup + 2 tbsp canola oil
  • 8 shallots, sliced
  • 1 lb pork belly, sliced
  • 1/4 cup light color soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • 2 bunches green onions, sliced
  • 1 tbsp fried garlic
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp sesame oil
  • 1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
6-8 servings


Cook sweet rice.

Meanwhile, wash mushrooms and soak in hot water until soft. Drain and squeeze dry.

Heat 1/4 cup oil in a large and deep pan over medium-high heat. Add shallots and cook until they start to brown. Add mushrooms and cook until the mushrooms have absorbed the taste of oil.

Lower heat to medium. Add pork belly, soy sauce, water, fresh garlic, and sugar. Cover and cook until the meat becomes tender (about 15 minutes). Scoop out and set aside.

In the same pan, add the remaining canola oil. When hot, add green onions and fried garlic. Cook until fragrant.

Reduce heat to low. Add the rice and meat mixture, as well as pepper and sesame oil. Mix well, and then remove from heat.

Transfer to a serving dish and top with fresh cilantro.

1 hour



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