All you need to know about Ciba

Updated: 2016-02-04 08:46

By Yang Jie(

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All you need to know about Ciba

As the annual Spring Festival or Chinese New Year approaches, President Xi Jinping paid a three-day visit to East China's Jiangxi province.

The tour took Xi to Ji'an, Jinggangshan and Nanchang, where he visited villages, enterprises, schools, local communities and revolutionary base museums, and extended holiday greetings to all citizens and military personnel.

Besides, President Xi also made Ciba, a local festive snacks, with residents. If you don’t know what Ciba is, here is a handy guide.

President Xi pounds cooked glutinous rice to make Ciba with local villagers in Jiangxi on his three-day visit to the eastern province. [Photo/Xinhua]

What is Ciba?

It is a sticky traditional Chinese snack made with cooked glutinous rice paste. It may take the shape of balls or cakes with various seasonings.

When do people eat it?

Traditionally, Ciba is served at festivals, especially Spring Festival. Ciba can be served whenever there are guests at home.

Where is it popular?

It is popular mostly in South China including Guangdong province, Guangxi Zhuang autonomous region, Guizhou province, Sichuan province, Hunan province and Hubei province.

There are similar foods in Japan, South Korea and other places, but preparation and eating methods are slightly different.

What does Ciba symbolize?

Most Ciba are round, meaning reunion, and making Ciba cakes is often a collective activity which requires the cooperation of many people from a big family or several families. Therefore, Ciba cakes often represent family reunion and good luck in the New Year.

All you need to know about Ciba

How to make it?

Follow these steps to make Ciba.

1. Process high grade glutinous rice, preferably red glutinous rice with thin shells, into glutinous rice flour.

2. Soak the glutinous rice in water thoroughly and then steam it in a wooden pot.

3. Grind the glutinous rice with a pestle and mortar, which gives the name "pounded Ciba".

4. After several rounds of hard pounding, divide the rice dough into dozens of egg-sized rice balls or cakes.

5. Put fried rice, peanuts, sesame seeds, brown sugar and other seasonings on the balls or cakes to produce a sweet, delicious taste and smooth texture.