This sweet sticky rice could well be one of my favorite breakfast items growing up. I don't have much of sweet tooth, less so for breakfast food, I rarely eat pancake or sugary cereal for breakfast. Lupis is an exception. It's no fuss no pretend sort of food. Very peasant dish, if I may. Basically it consists of sticky rice, palm sugar syrup and grated coconut.
99.99% of time, it comes in triangular shapes. Sometimes you will see cylinder/ log shaped lupis, but ....that's just not right!! :) It also has to have a tint of green on it, which primarily from the banana leaves wrappers. I guess it won't have any green tint if it's wrapped in foil or plastic. However, my favorite lupis stall actually tint hers with pandan extract. She sells the regular kind too (no pandan extract ones) but boy, the pandan kind is my favorite! I love love the smell of pandan leaves. Somebody should make it into potpourri!
I prefer lupis being packed in banana leaves, not only for the earthy smell of it, but also the beautiful faint green color it lends to this sticky rice. Unfortunately, my last batch of banana leaves went to Pepes Ikan and I haven't been to Asian grocery store since then. So, foil it is then, which actually make the process much easier. I added pandan extract..mmhh..to recreate the ones I used to eat for breakfast. Also, to get the green color on it. I am a firm believer that we feast through our eyes first.
The combination of coconut and pandan alone can make my day. Add to that, palm sugar syrup. Mmmhhmmhh!! Growing up, whenever I saw my mom/grandma was about to make something with palm sugar, I'd just stand there with eyes fixating to chopping block and pick on cubes or shavings of this sweet block. It's heavenly.
- 1 cup glutinous rice, rinse well and soak in water for about 45 minutes, drained.
- pinch of salt
- 1 tbsp slaked lime water
- 1 pandan leaf, make into a knot (optional)
- 1 drop of pandan extract (optional)
- 5-6 6" foil square, make into triangular pouch/ cone shape
- 1/2 cup gula Jawa/ palm sugar
- 3/4 cup water
- 1 pandan leaf, make into knot
- 1/2 cup unsweetened grated coconut
- After draining rice, toss in pinch of salt, add slaked lime water to rice. Stir. Add 1 drop of pandan extract. Mix well.
- Take 1 piece of cone foil, fill with 1/3 - 1/2 cup rice. Fold the sides and crimp. Pack it in such way that it resembles equilateral triangle, all equal length three sides.
- Put triangles in pot and cover with hot water. Boil for 2 hours. Check every so often and add hot water if necessary. Drain and let it cool.
- To make syrup, just toss in sugar, water and pandan leaf into saucepan. Stir and let it comes to thick syrup. I like my syrup pretty thick, add more water for thinner syrup.
- Once the triangle bundles cool down, dredge on grated coconut.
- Pour syrup on top of it. Actually, dump the syrup on it!! :) Both posted photos show only some drizzle, simply because I don't think glob of dark syrup would look very appetizing. In real life though, with fork in hand, syrup pouring, folks!
I wanted to say slaked lime water is optional, but at the same time, it is sort of alkali that makes the unique texture of lupis and other similar sweet dishes. I am scratching my head here trying to describe it better. Slaked lime water is sometimes used for fried food/crackers to maintain its crunchiness. In lupis though, it gives identical character of 'crisping' up the stickiness of rice so that it is more solid rather than too chewy and soft. It has certain 'give' when cutting and biting to it, think...al dante in pasta. However, if it comes to it, sudden cravings and all, then I would careless about whether there is slaked lime water or not. :D
That said, I am so submitting this to this month - Waiter, there's something in my..Indonesian, hosted by Wine.Scribbler.