Among the celebratory dishes that revolve around Dragon Boat Festival, none are as central as the rice dumpling – or bak chang as it is fondly known in Singapore. Here are eight places in Singapore where you can savour both sweet and savoury varieties, and indulge in the spirit of the festival on Jun 22, 2023.
Fullerton Hotels Singapore
Fullerton pays homage to Chinese and Singaporean culture with a selection of beloved classics as well as heritage-inspired rice dumplings. A new addition is the Ginseng Chicken Rice Dumpling – featuring succulent kampong chicken and black chicken infused with Korean ginseng and paired with ingredients such as black mushrooms, dried scallop, mung beans, and Chinese ham.
Share the joy of the auspicious occasion with a gift hamper for loved ones and associates, presented in an elegant, reusable woven basket. Included in each are locally-inspired flavours like the Blue Pea Nyonya Rice Dumpling, which harmoniously marries braised pork belly and candied winter melon; the Hokkien Hae Bee Hiam Rice Dumpling; and the Hokkien Salted Egg Yolk Rice Dumpling.
Orders can be placed online at shop.fullertonhotels.com, or physically at The Fullerton Cake Boutique, for delivery or self-collection. A two-day pre-order is required for online orders, with the last day for takeaway orders on Jun 18.
Perfect as edible gifts this dumpling festival are the handcrafted rice dumpling creations by one-Michelin-starred Shang Palace.These fragrant parcels brim with quality ingredients wrapped in glutinous rice.
Newly launched this year are the Plant-based Meat with Preserved Vegetables Low-GI Brown Rice Dumpling and 20-year Tangerine Peel Red Bean Lava Rock Rice Dumpling. Popular signatures to tuck into include the generously portioned Shang Palace Signature Barbecued Pork Rice Dumpling with Yunnan Ham and Conpoy, Traditional Nyonya Rice Dumpling and Truffle Pork Rice Dumpling with Salted Egg.
You can also consider getting the Heritage of Asia Rice Dumpling Gift Set or Shang Palace Rice Dumpling Gift Set for loved ones or business associates.
Shang Palace rice dumplings are available for order online, for self-collection at Shangri-La Singapore and delivery from now till Jun 22 at bit.ly/DBF2023.
Thye Moh Chan
The well-established Teochew pastry shop Thye Moh Chan ushers in the Dragon Boat Festival with an irresistible trio of bak chang flavours. Making a return is the perennial favourite Teochew Double Delight Bak Chang, made with pandan-infused glutinous rice and brimming with stir-fried succulent pork belly, juicy shiitake mushrooms, chestnuts, and homemade sweet tau sar (mung bean paste).
Another evergreen pick is the Teowchew Salted Egg Bak Chang, a classic package with umami notes of dried shrimp and salted egg. New this year is the Teowchew Vegetarian Chang, which is chock-full of ingredients such as sweet dried radish, mock mutton meat and mushrooms.
The dumplings are available for sale at all Thye Moh Chan, BreadTalk and Toast Box stores, with selected exclusions. Purchases can also be done via www.breadtalk.com.sg/shop until Jun 22.
Elevate your celebration with a luxurious offering from Xin Cuisine, Holiday Inn Singapore – the abalone and cumin pork rice dumpling. The dumpling is made with glutinous rice, pork spiced with cumin, and abalone, which not only gives it an umami burst of flavour, but also has high nutritional value, being rich in protein with anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties.
For those who prefer a homely taste, Xin Cuisine carries traditional rice dumplings filled with five-spiced braised pork belly meat, salted egg yolk, mushroom and shrimp. There’s also something for the sweet-toothed: Xin’s Red Lotus Seed Paste Rice Dumpling, a smooth and sticky dumpling that oozes creamy lotus paste with chestnuts and gingko nuts filling; paired with Xin’s osmanthus dipping sauce that exudes a fragrant, floral scent.
Orders can be made until Jun 19 through singaporeatrium.holidayinn.com/eshop. For more information, visit singaporeatrium.holidayinn.com/rice-dumplings-offer.
Can’t decide between sweet or savoury dumplings? Take your pick (or have both) as Crystal Jade Group presents two new highlights for the Dragon Boat Festival. New on the menu is the Scallion Oil Chicken with Preserved Vegetable Cai Po rice dumpling. Reminiscent of local chicken rice, courtesy of the homemade scallion oil, each bundle reveals juicy nuggets of chicken thigh meat and stir-fried cai po (diced and preserved radish), permeated with the aroma of spring onions.
Another new offering is the Petite Red Bean Paste with Tangerine Peel Rice Dumpling, inspired by Chinese tong shui (sweet broth). Each mini rice dumpling is dotted with homemade red bean paste, infused with the heady scent of quality aged tangerine peel.
Man Fu Yuan
Taking center stage at Man Fu Yuan at InterContinenal Singapore this year is the new, limited-edition Man Fu Yuan Classic Cantonese XL Rice Dumpling with Red Quinoa, a gargantuan 1kg dumpling packed with ingredients such as two 5-head South African abalones, five-spiced pork belly, giant dried shrimps, dace fish, roasted duck, and quinoa.
Only 88 pieces are available for purchase this year. Also debuting is the Cured Kurobuta Pork with Spicy Dried Shrimp Rice Dumpling, which uses sambal dried shrimps to complement the intense, robust flavours of the cured pork. Meanwhile, the Japanese Sweet Potato with Sesame Rice Dumpling and Australian Pumpkin with Quinoa provides a refreshing change from the usual savoury flavours.
Man Fu Yuan’s rice dumplings are available for collection, dine-in during lunch period, takeaway, and delivery until Jun 22. Orders can be made via singapore.intercontinental.com/dragonboatfestival.
Celebrate the season with handcrafted rice dumplings from Peach Blossoms at Parkroyal Collection Marina Bay, Singapore. Made from the finest ingredients, this year’s selection features four delicious options. Not to be missed is the Premium XO Cantonese Rice Dumpling, a hearty dumpling that is good for four persons and includes luxurious items such as abalone, conpoy, and Kurobuta pork belly.
Vegetarians are not left out, as there is the meat-free Vegetarian Rice Dumpling, packed to the brim with nutritious vegetables and herbs such as black truffle, cordyceps flower, and morel mushroom.
The Traditional Hakka Kurobuta Pork Belly Rice Dumpling is a classic option, featuring fermented bean curd, Japanese flower mushroom, dried shrimp, chestnut, and salted egg yolk. Meanwhile, the Hokkaido Sweet ‘Lava’ Rice Dumpling – filled with Hokkaido sweet potato custard in butterfly blue pea rice – is sure to satisfy any sweet tooth.
Place your orders at Peach Blossoms’ e-shop at bit.ly/prsmb-eshop from now until Jun 22.
Yan’s Dining, known for its authentic Shanghai cuisine, has launched a series of handmade rice dumplings in conjunction with Dragon Boat Festival. Over the years, the restaurant at Mandarin Gallery has introduced different flavours of Shanghai and Jiangnan rice dumplings including – salted egg yolk, fresh pork, red bean paste and others.
The meat-based rice dumplings are made with premium ingredients such as tender Iberico pork belly from Spain and soft glutinous rice from Dongbei. The pork is braised with a special sauce made by the chef who has more than 30 years of experience in Shanghainese cuisine. Yan’s has also rolled out its new Shanghainese rice dumpling which combines braised Spanish pork meat with abalone.
For something truly indulgent, try the Seven Dragon Ball Deluxe Rice Dumpling which combines 7 salted egg yolks with Iberico pork belly. Equally delicious are the sweet versions from the Classic Osmanthus Red Bean and Chestnut Dumpling to the Sago Crystal Rice Dumpling with three unique flavours: Sago Crystal Custard, Sago Crystal Matcha, and Purple Sago Crystal (purple yam).
For more information, visit www.yansdining.co.
A version of this article first appeared on epicure.