Cook This: Sesame Crusted Tikoy Prawn and Lapcheong Dumplings

February 5, 2017

Ingredients indigenous to a country or region are used creatively in a wide range of variations. In South America, corn is eaten on the cob, shredded, or ground into masa—the base of the arepa, tortilla, and tamale. While in Asia, rice makes an appearance as a dessert, sides, or a dish in itself. Rice cakes have many names: tteok in Korea, nian gao in China, mochi in Japan, and so on. Its uses vary from the sweet to the savory, but our recipe combines the two flavors in a crisp yet chewy dumpling.

The local tikoy is revived yearly by the lunar new year, locals give away boxes upon boxes of the stuff and who can blame them? The slight sweetness and unique texture turns believers out of the uninitiated every year. But what is initially received with excitement, eventually turns to dread—later on, you ask “how else can these be prepared?” The answer: as sesame crusted dumplings.

Taking cues from the region’s cuisines, this recipe fills rolled out tikoy with prawns and Chinese sausage paired with a refreshing vermicelli salad. Encrusting each dumpling with sesame seeds adds a crunch and a nuttiness to the dish, providing contrast to the soft and sticky texture of the tikoy. Proving the local tikoy can be just as versatile as its other variations, this dish will kickstart your excitement for the rice cake once again.

Sesame Crusted Tikoy Prawn and Lapcheong Dumplings

Yield: 4 portions (around 16 prawns)
Time: 3 hours


  • 8 slices tikoy, about 1 cm x 4 cm
  • 4 pcs lapcheong
  • 500g prawn, peeled and deveined (leave the tail on)
  • salt, to taste
  • 1 cup flour
  • 4 pcs egg, beaten
  • 2 cups panko breadcrumbs
  • ¼ cup white sesame seeds
  • ¼ cup black sesame seeds
  • canola oil, to fry

Ingredients: Salad

  • 2 pcs cucumber
  • 80g vermicelli, soaked in cold water until soft
  • 1 pc red onion, peeled and sliced julienne
  • 6 pcs tomato, cut into quarters
  • ½ bunch wansoy, stems and leaves (roots removed)
  • ½ bunch basil leaves
  • ½ bunch mint leaves

Ingredients: Salad Dressing

  • ½ cup white vinegar
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp cumin seed, toasted and ground
  • 2 pcs garlic cloves, chopped fine
  • 1 pc red chili, chopped fine
  • 2 tsp sesame oil
  • ¼ cup canola oil


  1. Flour a work bench and knead tikoy slices individually until it forms a smooth ball.
  2. Roll out each tikoy ball until thin and resembling a gyoza wrapper.
  3. Cut lapcheong in half crosswise and cut each half into four lengthwise to form long wedges.
  4. Slice the back of each prawn and fit each sausage wedge into the prawn.
  5. Place prawn in flattened tikoy and sprinkle with a bit of salt.
  6. Fold in tikoy over the prawn leaving tail exposed. Crimp ends like an empanada. Set aside.

Procedure: Breading

  1. Mix white sesame, black sesame and panko together and mix through.
  2. Place the egg and flour into separate bowls season flour with a bit of salt and mix through coat prawn parcel in flour dip in egg roll in breadcrumb sesame seed. Set aside when all prawns are done.

Procedure: Salad and dressing

  1. In a bowl place vinegar, salt, sugar, garlic, cumin, and chili. Whisk together slowly whisk in both oils to form a vinaigrette.
  2. Peel cucumber and throw out skin continue using peeler on meat moving lengthwise to create long ribbons.
  3. Mix ribbons with all the other salad ingredients.

Procedure: frying

  1. Heat oil in a deep pot ensuring it doesn’t go above halfway of the pot.
  2. You can test the oil buy throwing a few lose breadcrumb pieces in the heated oil. You’ll know it’s ready when it starts to bubble. Be careful to control the heat of the pot. Don’t let it smoke. (180˚C if you have a deep fryer.)
  3. Place in a few prawns making sure not to crowd pot.
  4. Remove when prawns are golden brown and cooked through.
  5. Toss salad with three tablespoons dressing and serve with prawns.
Bernice Escobar SEE AUTHOR Bernice Escobar

Bernice loves to get nerdy about food and making people hungry. In her free time, she attempts to play with her anti-social cat and fantasizes about all things sweet.

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