I’ve been eating yuan for as long as I can remember. Come to think of it, I never really knew why my mom made it, she just did. Apparently, it’s to celebrate the Winter Solstice. The round shape symbolizes family unity. It can be made either savory or sweet, we always have the savory, which I prefer. And nowadays, mine is a vegan version.
This last time I helped out with the prep work – cutting the napa cabbage, mushrooms and daikon. While cutting the daikon, mom walks by and tells me I’m cutting it all wrong. It’s at the wrong angle dummy and you’re too slow but you know in a kind, motherly sorta way. Meanwhile, she was making the glutinous rice dough into the round yuans and by the time I was done with the cutting, she was done with the yuan making. I guess I really was slow. I was going to measure and write down the recipe but she’s already finished. Okay, I’ll just get it next time. Mom said I can make it anytime, it’s easy. Ha! I once tried making the yuans myself, rolling a piece of the dough between the palms to make the round shape. They came out kinda lumpy looking, poor misshapen balls. Then mom showed off by making two at a time. I said shut up but you know in a loving, daughterly sorta way.