Glutinous rice peanut balls


Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Serves


Appears in

Jackfruit and Blue Ginger

Jackfruit and Blue Ginger

By Sasha Gill

Published 2019

  • About

It would be difficult to overstate the ubiquity of peanuts in Singaporean cooking. And these sweet, peanut-coated rice balls called muah chee are no exception. They were a recess-time favourite of mine at school – no day was complete without a plastic tub crammed full of muah chee. Use a toothpick to skewer them, then eat and let it soothe your rumbling stomach. Pure, peanutty bliss.

Prep time: 15 minutes
Cooking time: 15 minutes


  • ¾ cup (100 g) glutinous rice flour
  • ¼ cup (55 g) white sugar
  • ½ cup (70 g) ground roasted peanuts
  • 3 tablespoons white sugar

Shallot oil

  • ½ cup (125 ml) vegetable oil
  • 5 shallots, finely sliced


For the shallot oil, heat the oil in a saucepan or wok and fry the shallots until golden and crisp. Remove from the heat, letting the shallots infuse the oil until it is cool, then strain into a sterilised glass jar. (You only need a tablespoon of the shallot oil for this, but the rest should keep in a cool, dark place for 3–4 months, and can be used to add extra flavour to stir-fries and curries.)

Set a steamer basket over a saucepan of boiling water. In a heatproof bowl that will fit inside your steamer basket, mix the rice flour, sugar with 1 tablespoon of your shallot oil and ¾ cup (185 ml) water to make a smooth lump-free batter. Place the bowl of batter in the steamer basket and steam for 15 minutes, stirring halfway through with a spatula.

Meanwhile, mix together the peanuts and sugar in a wide, shallow bowl.

When the dough is ready, tip it out into the peanut mixture. Holding a pair of scissors in one hand and a spoon in the other, cut the dough into small balls, and use the spoon to toss them about and coat them in the peanut mixture – this will also help to keep them from sticking together.

For easy eating, serve with toothpicks!