Chinese Food Lesson of the Day: ZongZi

If you see this bamboo wrapped treat in Chinatown, it’s called a ZongZi. It is pronounce Zz-Ong-Zi. The “ong” part is pronounced like the ‘Ong’ in Ong Bak, the name of the Thai martial artist. Savory ZongZis are some of my favorite things to eat, there are also sweet varieties of it too.


A savory ZongZi’s is filled with sticky, glutinous rice that is filled with fatty meat, peanuts, salty duck egg yolk, chestnuts and mushrooms. My mouth is watering just thinking about that. Or maybe it’s because I’m smelling the homemade pizza in my oven.

Sweet ZongZi’s are usually filled with a red bean paste. It is a very rich tasting dish, and all that richness shows in the calorie and fat content, but when you are eating good food, try not to think about it. My favorite place to get them is from the kitchen of one of my mother’s best friends. Since she would probably get really upset if I posted her address on my website, I’ll just direct you to your nearest Chinese supermarket. Go to the refrigerated section. Some smaller food shops may even sell homemade ones.

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