Sesame balls

Fried sesame ball is a popular Chinese classic dessert traditionally served during the Lunar New Year or celebrating special occasions like birthdays and weddings. Due to its popularity, vendors now sell them in the streets, and most of the dim sum restaurants have them on the menu. This dessert is better served while it’s still hot, and it’s not suitable for storing in the fridge. Ideally, eat it as soon as possible for the best taste.


  • ½ cup (4 oz). glutinous rice flour
  • 1 and ½ tbsp (.75 oz) regular rice flour
  • 1 and ½ tbsp (.75 oz) all-purpose or wheat flour
  • 5 tbsp potato flakes
  • 1/2 cup warm water
  • 8 tsp water to reach desired consistency
  • 1 and ½ tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 6 cups oil
  • Cheese, cubed into 1’’ squares for filling
  • Sesame seeds



  1. In a big bowl, pour ½ cup of water. Add sugar and salt then mix to dissolve.
  2. Once dissolved, add the remaining ingredients and mix until the dough is slightly dry with a play dough consistency. (Hand mixing is recommended, but a mixer with a paddle attachment or a food processor is fine)
  3. Cover and let the dough rest for 2 to 8 hours. It will slightly rise and hydrate after resting, making it easier to work with.
  4. Pinch off a piece of dough roughly the size of a golf ball. Use your thumb to make a deep indentation in the dough and then the thumb and index fingers of both hands to form the dough into a cup.
  5. Place the cheese in the hole, and shape the dough over the top to seal. It is important to make sure the cheese is completely covered. Continue with the remainder of the dough.
  6. Spread the sesame seeds over a piece of wax or parchment paper. Place a small bowl of water beside the sesame seeds.
  7. Dip a ball into the small bowl of water (this will help the sesame seeds stick to the ball) and roll the ball over the sesame seeds. Repeat the process with the remainder of the balls.
  8. Deep fry the sesame balls at around 285F. Once the sesame seeds turn light brown (about 2 minutes), use the back of a spatula or a large ladle to gently press the balls against the side of the wok or saucepan. Continue applying pressure as the balls turn golden brown and expand to approximately 3 times their normal size. It should take about 11 minutes per batch. You may need to stir them a bit for an even fry.
  9. Drain the deep-fried sesame seed balls on paper towels.
  10. Serve and enjoy!



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