Making your own Nyonya Chang ( an Asian Delight) by backpackies

Firstly we have to admit, we were abit skeptical about writing a blog solely on “Glutinous Rice Dumplings” aka Nyonya Chang in Hokkien Dialect.
Because we don’t do food blogs!!

But  since our friend posted up some pictures of these colorful dumplings on our facebook page, we were so tempted to try out these traditional treats. All these pictures are courtesy of Mandy Choong. Thank you so much for letting us use your pictures!

So here we are following her step by step guide to making your own home made Nyonya dumplings.

Lets just get two things clear.
ONE: These aren’t your regular “Chang” or dumplings. They are called Nyonya Chang because,  these dumplings were made by the Nyonya – descendents of the late 15th and 16th-century Chinese immigrants to the Nusantara region during the Colonial era.  Nyonya is the term for the ladies and Baba for the gentlemen.
TWO: …Chang, Zhong, Zonzi,  they all mean 1 thing; glutinous rice with yummylicious fillings wrapped in bamboo/lotus/banana leaves. Chang is eaten on the 5th day of the 5th Lunar Month

Penang nyonya chang

Making your own delicious dumplings

Step 1: Get your self some glutinous rice. Soak it over night.

Penang Chang

Pea flower extract used to make blue coloring

To get its nice ocean blue color –  2 tablespoon of the coloring (extracted from the butterfly pea flower) into 150g of rice (from the 500g of glutinous rice). Then leave to soak overnight.

Penang Nyonya Chang

Glutinous rice and its ingredients

After the ingredients are ready, fold the leaves in to a cone shape. Then put in your fillings. A mix of prepared pork belly, winter melon and Chinese Mushroom.candied winter melon, pepper, chopped garlic, chopped shallots.

penang nyonya chang

After putting in a layer of glutinous rice, you then put the filling in

Then top it up with glutinous rice. Make sure its nice and compact.

Nyonya Chang Penang

Putting the rice into the leaves

Penang Nyonya Chang

Wrap the ingredients up nicely with the leaves


nyonya chang penang

Wrap it nicely and compact

After you have wrapped the dumplings. You can practically leave it before you want to eat it.
Before eating, just steam dumplings over boiling water in a wok/steamer for 30 minutes to heat it up.

penang nyonya chang

Chang without coloring and one with blue coloring

Voila…your own Nyonya Chang. I’m sure you can find plenty of step by step recipes online. But we just wanted to show you how unique we found this Dumplings to be. We just love the bright blue color of it.

penang nyonya chang

Cutting up the nyonya chang

Usually made on the 5th of the Lunar month, somewhere around June,if you are around Asia do give this a try.
If you are Muslim, make sure its a halal version. Most of these dumplings use pork meat and lard to give it extra taste.

Finally Happy Dumpling Day from all of us at
Like always if you do have a facebook account, please do add us on backpackies is on facebook!

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Filed under backpacking, Penang, Penang Famous Hawker Food

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