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Bánh Chưng

posted Jan 29, 2019, 6:28 PM by Quoc-Anh Vuong   [ updated Jan 15, 2023, 11:43 AM by Ly Vuong ]

Update Jan 15th 2023

Able to make 18 5"x5"x2-1.2" bánh chưng, from following materials
  • 10lbs sweet rice, 6tsp salt
    • Use 1cup to scoop to make thin 2", or 1-1/4 to scoop to make thick 3"
  • 3 bags of mung beans, 6tsp salt, 6tsp ground pepper
  • 3-1/2 bags of banana leaves
  • 3lbs pork bellies
  • 1/3lbs of shallots

The templates to cut banana leaves
  • 7" x 7" - Corners, need 4
  • 10" x 5-1/4" - Sides, need 2
  • 5" x 5" - Top/Bottom, need 2

Ingredients to make 4 bánh chưng, about 5" square.
  • 3lbs of sweet rice
  • 1 bag of mung bean
  • 1 bag of banana leaves
  • 1lb of pork bellies
  • 1/2 bag of shallots
Preparation the night before
  • Soak the rice 
  • Soak the mung bean 
  • Peel and slice shallots
  • Wash and cut pork bellies into 3/4" x 2" strips, add 1 tsp coarse ground black pepper, 1 tsp salt, and shallot slices.
Prepare the banana leaves
  • Cut 16 squares, 8" min - 10" max. Make sure they are square
  • Cut 8 5" x 10" rectangles.
  • Cut 4 5" squares. 
  • Wash and wipe them clean
  • Double fold the big squares into small squares
Use pressure cooker
  • Make sure the water cover the bánh chưng. We have a small pressure cooker, so we do a batch of 2. Set the pressure level of medium, and the temperature 160degree-C, and for one hour. So, in two hours we can cook 4 bánh chưng.

Notes from after eating the batch cooked in the pressure cooker:
  • Less salt in the rice, next time. I had 2 tsp, reduce down to 1.
  • The color on the rice is not as green as the batch cooked in the turkey fryer

Additional Information (Feb 5th, 2021)

  • With 3 new banana leaves bags, and 1/3 last year bag, we can cut & prepare for 15 bánh chưng
  • This time we cooked/steamed three 14oz bags of mung beans, and for each bag we added 3.5 tea spoons of salt, and 6 tea spoon of freshly ground black pepper.
  • We found it's easier to have card-board templates, to use to cut the banana leaves
    • One 7" square, to make 4 corners
    • One 5"x10" rectangle, to make 2 sides
    • One 5" square, to make top & bottom
  • We bought 6lbs pork belly 
  • We bought one bag of shallots
  • On Friday, the day before
    • We steamed the mung beans & mixed it with salt & pepper, and put them in smaller containers. About 2hrs to do this.
    • We cut & wash banana leaves, prepare about 3hrs to do this.
    • We cut 3lbs pork belly, mixed with 4 cloves of shallots, 3 tea spoons salt, and 3 tea spoons of freshly ground black pepper
  • On Saturday
    • We use 1 cup to scoop sweet rice
    • We use 1/2 cup to scoop mung bean
    • About 3 piece of pork belly for each cake
    • Started around 9am, by 11am we made 15 to fit the pot we have, and started the cooking
    • We also use saran wrap outside of each bánh chưng, to contain the blow out, if any.
    • We use the 12" diameter mesh to keep the bánh chưng to submerge under the water
    • We cook inside the garage to avoid the wind and potential snow/rain
  • For each mung bean bag, we used 2 teaspoon salt & 2 teaspoon black pepper
  • For each 5lb sweet rice, we used 3 teaspoon salt
  • For 3lbs pork belly, we used 2 teaspoons salt and 2 teaspoons black pepper