The best cooking time for bánh chưng to achieve a soft and delicious texture while still retaining the green color of the leaves

Many people wonder how long it takes to cook bánh chưng.


How long to boil banh chung?

In ancient times, due to being busy during the day, people used to cook banh chung at night, so there is a story that there was a person who cooked banh chung poorly because they didn’t add boiling water to the pot on time. Nowadays, with the development of the economy and technology, the process of boiling banh chung has become simpler. Now, let’s analyze the different methods of boiling banh chung and the factors that affect the cooking time of your family’s banh chung.

If you boil banh chung using a traditional wood stove or charcoal stove, it should take at least 8 – 10 hours. If you use an electric cooker, it will be faster, about 6 hours. Do not overcook the banh chung as it will become mushy and easily break apart. Also, do not undercook it, as the inside will not be fully cooked.

To preserve the green color of the leaves, the banh chung should be boiled for about 4 – 5 hours after the water starts boiling. Take the banh chung out, soak it in cold water, and then wash off the outer leaves. Continue boiling until the banh chung is completely cooked.

To ensure that the banh chung is firm and does not deform, use a suitable weight to press it. This will help drain out excess water and allow the banh chung to cool naturally.

During the last days of the year, although every family is busy, they all want to wrap and cook a pot of banh chung to create the Tet holiday atmosphere. This is also an opportunity for generations to come together and learn how to wrap banh chung from the older members of the family. There is nothing happier than moments when the whole family is together. These are definitely beautiful memories that children will never forget.

Factors affecting the boiling time of banh chung

The cooking time depends on the following factors:

Type of pot used for boiling banh chung

The type of pot you use will greatly determine the cooking time. It can be a regular aluminum pot, a pressure cooker, a steamer, or an industrial electric cooker, etc.

If you use an aluminum pot on a wood or charcoal stove, the cooking time can range from 6 – 8 – 10 hours, depending on the quantity and size of the banh chung you wrap.

If you use an electric rice cooker to cook 1 – 2 pairs of banh chung at once, it will take about 4 – 5 hours.

When using a pressure cooker, the cooking time will also vary from 4 – 5 hours, depending on the capacity of the cooker. During the cooking process, you still need to open the lid of the cooker to add water and flip the banh chung.

With a large industrial electric cooker, when cooking several dozen banh chung at a time, the average cooking time will be 6 – 10 hours.

Quantity of banh chung

The more banh chung you cook, the longer the cooking time. When stacking the banh chung, pay attention not to pack them too tightly or too loosely. Maintain a moderate spacing, as the cooked banh chung will expand and be thicker than the raw ones.

If you stack them improperly, the banh chung can easily break apart. Before putting the banh chung into the pot, line the bottom with a few layers of leaves. This helps preserve the color and thoroughly cook the banh chung, as well as prevents the pot from burning.

Size of banh chung

Depending on each family’s preference and tradition, the size of banh chung can vary. The small size is about 7cm, the medium size is 10cm, and the large size is 12cm or 15cm, etc. The smaller the banh chung, the faster it cooks, reducing the cooking time. You will have to rely on previous years’ experience of cooking banh chung to adjust the cooking time according to the changing size of the banh chung.

Preparation of ingredients for making banh chung

The preparation of ingredients before wrapping the banh chung also affects the cooking time.

Some families soak the glutinous rice overnight to make it expand, which will shorten the cooking time. Other families only clean the rice without soaking, which requires a looser wrap and longer cooking time. Some even steam the rice briefly before wrapping to further reduce the cooking time.

As for the mung bean filling, you can either remove the skins and wrap directly, or cook and grind it before wrapping. Steaming the beans beforehand will definitely shorten the cooking time.

Additives for boiling banh chung

If your family specializes in making and selling banh chung, reducing the cooking time is essential. Time is money, and it greatly affects the revenue.

Some people add lemon juice to the boiling water or soak the rice in rice-water to create an alkaline environment, which helps the banh chung cook faster and become softer. Another popular method is to dissolve baking soda in the pot to make the banh chung cook faster.

For every 10 – 12 banh chung, add 2 – 3 teaspoons of baking soda. If the quantity of banh chung increases, add more additives accordingly. This helps save a considerable amount of time without compromising the quality of the banh chung or the health of consumers.

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