Saturday, December 10, 2011

Mom's Chinese-Style Rice Krispies Treats

Chinese moms don’t measure when they cook.  They eyeball ingredients and when someone says “this isn’t quite the same”, they’ll tell you “eat it anyway, it’s good for you.”  Who can argue with a mom who loves to feed everyone who walks in the door?

Mom’s variation of Rice Krispies Treats, made from only the “official” Rice Krispies cereal, is thinner, crunchier, and less sweet than the classic squares.  Chinese sweets often use toasted peanuts and sesame seeds and the addition of these two ingredients give the treats an Asian-centric taste.  If desired, add a small handful of finely cut candied ginger.

Made the same manner as the traditional snap, crackle and pop bars,  Mom’s version has  slight adjustments.

Mom's Chinese-Style Rice Krispies Treats


In a dry medium skillet, toast about 1 cup of raw peanuts until golden and rub off the skins if they’re still on; toss the skins.  While peanuts are cooling, toast about ¼ cup sesame seeds until golden in the same skillet.  Rough chop the peanuts.  Set aside both the nuts and seeds.

Make the Rice Krispies Treats recipe that’s on the side or back of the box: melting the butter and marshmallows, add the Rice Krispies, using either the stovetop or microwave version.  Stir well to mix and add a couple cups or more of Rice Krispies so that the mixture’s not so gooey. This will help crisp up the results.  Stir in the chopped peanuts and sesame seeds (and candied ginger if desired); gently mix well.

Pour mixture onto rimmed cookie sheets (no need to butter).  Spray a non-stick coating onto a sheet of wax paper, cover bars and firmly press so that bars are about 3/8” thick, compressing the mixture to help keep the bars together after cutting. Smooth top using a rolling pin.  It might take 2 cookie small sheets to accommodate the batch.  Cool completely, lightly butter a sharp knife and into 2” square bars.  Store in an airtight container.

Goes well with hot tea and (added bonus) you can enjoy twice as many bars as the originals because these are half as thick!

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