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Kunming Er'kuai

Rice cake, referred to as Er'kuai in Yunnan, is a popular snack and always served for breakfast; people also offer Erkuai to each other when spending China's Spring Festival. As described in a poem of the Qing Dynasty, the northerners eat dumplings in Spring Festival, while people in Kunming cook Er'kuai rice cakes, Er'kuai could be prepared by frying, boiling, stewing and roasting etc; in the morning, you can see lots of people take Er'kuai as breakfast. Sometimes, you can take even it as Yunnan's fast food of KFC or Mc. Donald.

Er'kuai is in fact Rice Cake. As one of the household snack in Kunming, Er'kuai is made from steamed rice by pounding and kneading. Er'kuai can be kept in different shapes and can also be prepared by frying, boiling, steaming and baking etc. 

(A picture shows the overall process for making Er’kuai)

The traditional technique for making Er'kuai in Guandu Old Town has been officially accepted as one of the intangible heritages in Kunming. In January 2011, Guandu Er'kuai Techniques Exhibition Center was opened in Guandu Ancient Town. The Center is aimed to showcase the traditional ways for making Er'kuai and make citizens look back on “Old Kunming”.

1-Steaming rice is only the beginning for making Er'kuai


2-Pounding is the key step for making Er'kuai; the pounding mill is totally worked by muscles


3-Kneading the pounded rice into different shapes


4-Er'kuai traditionally made can have a shelf life of 6 months


5-Baking is the most popular way for Kunming locals to prepare Er’kuai

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