Half-Moon Rice Cake (Songpyeon) Recipe

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Ian Modified: December 8, 2021
Half-Moon Rice Cake (Songpyeon) Recipe

 

How To Make Half-Moon Rice Cake (Songpyeon)

Songpyeon is a Korean rice cake that is typically prepared for special occasions. This half moon cake is chewy, nutty, and just a bit sweet.

Prep: 20 mins
Resting Time: 30 mins
Cook: 30 mins
Total: 1 hr 20 mins
Makes:

Ingredients

  • 3 1⁄4 cup short grain rice flour, (mepssalgaru 멥쌀가루 or ssalgaru 쌀가루), sifted
  • 1 cup blueberries, washed and drained
  • 2 tsp yellow water, from gardenia fruits
  • hot water
  • kosher salt
  • honey, (or sugar)
  • 1⁄4 cup fresh beans, (cranberry beans or any fresh beans)
  • 3 tbsp pine nuts
  • 3 tbsp sesame seeds, ground, toasted
  • pine needles, washed and pat-dried with kitchen towel
  • 1 tbsp sesame oil

Instructions

  1. Combine 1½ cup rice flour, ¼ teaspoon kosher salt, and ¼ cup hot water in a bowl and mix it with a spoon until the dough is cool enough to knead by hand.
  2. Knead for about 1 minute until smooth.
  3. Roll it into a ball and wrap it in plastic wrap. Set aside.
  4. Put a little more than 2 tablespoons rice flour and 1½ teaspoons gardenia fruit water into a small bowl. Mix it with a spoon and then roll it into a ball with your fingers.
  5. Wrap it in plastic wrap and set aside.
  6. Place 1½ cup rice flour and ¼ teaspoon kosher salt in a bowl. Set aside.
  7. Heat a thick pan over medium high heat and add blueberries. Press and break the blueberries with a potato masher (or a large wooden spoon) while cooking them, until all the berries are broken. Let it bubble for a few minutes, stirring with a wooden spoon.

  8. Remove from the heat. Put it into a mesh strainer over a fitted bowl. Press down and stir it with a wooden spoon to strain.

  9. Add ¼ cup to the rice flour. Mix it with a wooden spoon until the dough is cool enough to handle by hand.
  10. Knead the dough for about 1 minute until smooth.
  11. Roll it into a ball and wrap it in plastic wrap. Set aside.

Fillings:

  1. Put the beans into a small bowl and mix with 2 teaspoons honey.
  2. Fold the the pine nuts into a piece of parchment paper on your cutting board. Pound the nuts through the paper or roll them with a rolling pin until they’re crushed. Put them into a small bowl and mix with 1 tablespoon honey.

  3. Put the sesame powder in a small bowl and mix with 1 tablespoon honey and pinch of salt.

Shape songpyeon:

  1. Take a piece (about 1 ounce) of white or purple dough and roll it into a ball.

  2. Work your thumb into the center of the ball to create a small cup out of it. Fill the cup with one of the fillings: beans, sesame seeds, or pine nuts.
  3. Seal it using your thumb and index finger and shape it into a half moon. You can leave it like that, or for some variation you can roll the half moon into a smooth ball and shape a little ridge on the top.

  4. Keep rolling and filling until all the dough is finished, about 12 to 14 songpyeon. Leave about 1 ounce of white and purple dough for flower petals.

How to make rice cake flowers:

  1. Take a tiny amount of purple dough, about size of rice grain, and roll it into a ball. Press the ball with thumb and index finger to make a flat petal. Shape it into a petal.

  2. Gently attach the petal to a white songpyeon. Add four more petals to make a flower.

  3. Make a pistil with the yellow dough by rolling tiny amount of the dough and putting it in the center of the petals.
  4. Repeat with the rest of white, purple, and yellow dough.
  5. Add 2 inches of water to a large steamer and bring to a boil. Turn off the heat until we’re ready to steam.
  6. Line the steamer basket with a cotton cloth and fresh pine needles.
  7. Add all the songpyeon and put another cotton cloth on top of the basket and close the lid. This will stop water from dripping on the songpyeon while its being steamed.
  8. Turn on the heat to medium-high and steam for 30 minutes, then for 5 minutes at low heat.
  9. Remove from the heat and uncover. Let them cool for a few minutes, then take them out of the steamer with a spatula and a spoon. Brush each songpyeon with a little bit of toasted sesame oil.
  10. Serve them by themselves, or with tea. Keep any leftovers in the freezer when the rice cake is still fresh and soft.

Nutrition

  • Sugar: 6g
  • :
  • Calcium: 91mg
  • Calories: 915kcal
  • Carbohydrates: 193g
  • Fat: 7g
  • Fiber: 10g
  • Iron: 3mg
  • Monounsaturated Fat: 2g
  • Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g
  • Potassium: 477mg
  • Protein: 17g
  • Saturated Fat: 1g
  • Sodium: 8mg
  • Vitamin A: 893IU
  • Vitamin C: 17mg
Nutrition Disclaimer
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