Editor's note: The following recipe is taken from the "The Yunnan Cookbook" by Annabel Jackson and Linda Chia. The compendium of 120 recipes was originally published in October 2014, by Hong Kong-based Blacksmith Books.
The dishes contained in the book focus primarily on the cooking traditions of the Han Chinese and the Bai, Dai, Naxi, Tibetan and Wa minorities who all call Yunnan home. For more information on the authors and their works, or to purchase a hardcopy of the cookbook, check out the publisher's website or their Amazon page.
This is an iconic Dai dish, combining two staples of the Xishuangbanna region — pineapples and rice. It is served as part of a meal even though it is quite sweet, but it is not a dessert. Add sugar or honey to taste. The trick is to ensure that chunks of pineapple, rather than pineapple juice, are mixed with the rice, otherwise it will turn almost sloppy. A new trend is to add cooked peanuts with the skin on. The dish looks even more attractive if a combination of white and red rice are used.
1 large pineapple
½ teaspoon salt
115 grams / 4 ounces white glutinous rice, cooked
55 grams / 2 ounces red glutinous rice, cooked
4 tablespoons sugar or honey
cooked peanuts (optional)
• To prepare the pineapple, clean it, flattening the bottom to ensure it will stand up in the steamer.
• Tidy up the top of the pineapple, then cut off the top and set it aside.
• Using a spoon, remove the pineapple flesh, trying to keep it in chunks.
• Place the flesh in a bowl with salt. If the fruit is quite sour, add sugar or honey at this point — up to 2 or 3 tablespoons.
• Dry out the cavity of the pineapple.
• Mix the pineapple flesh with the rice (the proportion should be about half-half).
• Spoon back into the cavity almost to the top, put on the "lid", and steam for 15 minutes.