Friday, April 24, 2020

[RECIPE] Pan-fried Rice Cake Patties with Pumpkin Seeds, Cinnamon Butter Sauce

A pan-fried rice cake dessert recipe with crispy flour coating and crushed pumpkin seeds toppings. The rich cinnamon butter sauce merged all the flavorful textures with the delicate softness of rice in every bite.

This recipe is such a delight to make, even more so to eat. The idea to make this recipe stemmed from having a leftover cup of rice. I just happened to have a large plate of pancit and rice for lunch, so I decided to not double on carbs by not eating the rice.

I have stated in the About Kitchen Maiden page of this blog,
the best recipes are created by accident.

fried flat rice cake with cinnamon butter sauce

The philosophy of re-purposing resources

My philosophy is not waste on resources, and that goes the same with food. I have to make something out of the leftover rice before it would spoil. If you've been following my recipes, most often I have the serving sizes made only for one. Since I live alone, I only feed myself and my cat and occasionally make a bit more than I normally would whenever my boyfriend is around.

The philosophy of using the most of what you have means using the last morsel of dry ingredients to the last drop of oils or creams, and find recipes for these ingredients to come together and eventually create something new out of them.

fried flat rice cake recipe

I have to find another way to use the rice, and just as I have the last few ingredients to use up like butter and cream, this rice recipe becomes perfect for my afternoon snack. And boy how this rice cake recipe just becomes one of the best recipes I've made in a while. This surely will be added to my signature recipes.

Learning about the amylopectin in rice

The beauty of food is that one food item can become a lot of things all at once. When I created this rice cake patty, I just finished watching Flavorful Origins on Netflix. It's the episode featuring the rice cake origin of Yunnan cuisine in China. Yunnan province has a rice pounding tradition using a huge wooden mallet. In this episode, it requires 8 men for the rice pounding to be carried out. The continuous pounding of cooked rice will let this glucose unit, a component of starch called amylopectin, combine into a firm structure resulting in a rice dough that is sticky and firm as well.

flattened rice dough after being pounded

Asian rice cake inspirations

Like most Filipinos, I grew up eating these traditional rice cake recipes like palitaw, bilo-bilo, and biko. I have made these three rice cake recipes before. I understand that I need either a sticky rice or a grounded version of it should I decide to make them again. But I asked myself, what if I make rice cake by just using the same leftover rice that I have at my disposal? It's going to be a bit labor-intensive for me since I have to pound the rice, but I am always up for the challenge.

Also, I love Chowking's sesame buchi. I've had Japanese mochi. So there are a lot of Asian inspirations I can adopt just to make this rice cake recipe work with my leftover rice.

New rice cake recipe with playful textures of biko dukot and palitaw

The flour-coated crust and the crushed pumpkin seeds gave the patties a crispy crunch while the rice itself gave this rice cake dessert that soft finish in your mouth. The rich cinnamon butter sauce sweetened with brown sugar reminded me so much of the molasses-like taste of muscovado sugar in biko's latik. This cinnamon butter sauce just becomes a perfect pair for this newly invented rice cake recipe.

This rice cake recipe turned out so much better than I expected. I have this tendency to over-compensate with the number of ingredients to put when making new recipes, but for this one, my instinct tells me to keep it simple. I'm glad that I followed my instinct.

Definition of terms:

  • palitaw - traditional Filipino boiled flat rice cake made of grounded sticky rice coated with shredded coconut and sprinkled with white sugar and sesame seeds
  • bilo-bilo - similar to palitaw but is smaller and in ball form. Unlike palitaw, these balls are added as an ingredient to coconut milk stew along with bananas, yams, etc.
  • biko - traditional Filipino sticky rice dessert completely soaked and coated with latik
  • latik - a sugar syrup made from a mix of muscovado sugar, brown sugar and coconut milk
  • biko dukot - biko served with scorched portions
  • buchi - a snack or dessert of sticky rice balls coated with sesame seeds and with bean paste filling
  • mochi - is a rice ball dessert that originated in Japan

pumkin seeds crushed
crushed pumpkin seeds for rice cake patties toppings


Please do not hesitate to find alternatives should I have ingredients in the list that you do not have. My recipes are created out of the things that I currently have. Please make some adjustments so we can all follow this philosophy of using available resources. It's sustainable for the environment and cost-effective.

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  • 1 cup cooked rice
  • 2 tbsp flour
  • 1 and 1/2 tbsp brown sugar
  • 3 and 1/2 tbsp water
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 2 tbsp all purpose cream
  • 1 tbsp crushed/grounded pumpkin seeds
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon powder
  • cooking oil
  1. Rice cake patty: Divide rice into 5 portions. Pound each portion thoroughly using mortar and pestle until forming into thick paste or dough. Do the same to the remaining portions. Next, rub your hands with oil. Prepare a separate plate or tray and also coat its surface with oil to keep the rice cake balls from sticking. Divide the rice cake ball into three then flatten each balls and form into cake patties using the palm of your hand. Prepare flour in another plate. Coat both sides of each rice cake patty with flour. Heat pan in medium-low fire. Add enough cooking oil making a quarter of the patty's base floats in oil. Add rice cake patties and fry until crisp and brown. Flip and do the same to the other side. Prepare a clean plate with paper towel to help remove excess oil. Remove the pan-fried rice cake patties and place on the plate. Set aside.
  2. Cinnamon butter sauce: Heat another pan in low-medium fire. Add water and brown sugar. Mix until sugar crystals are complete dissolved. Add butter, cinnamon and all purpose cream. Mix well. When sauce has thickened, remove from the pan. Pour cinnamon butter sauce in a saucer or ramekin.
  3. To start plating, remove paper towel from the rice cake patties. Keep the same plate and arrange patties. Garnish patties with crushed pumpkin seeds as toppings.
  4. Serve.

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