Thai Sticky Rice Steeped in Coconut Milk, 'Khao Neeo Moon'

Khao neeo moon is a truly authentic Thai recipe. Mixing sweet dessert rice with a sugary seafood topping might seem like a bizarre combination that Food Network might sensationalize on one of their celebrity shows. Yet this is a favorite of Thailand found throughout the country, made interesting by a variety of toppings. Here we demonstrate how to make the rice, and two of the more common toppings.

We prepared the rice in three colors. White, black (using black rice), and yellow (white rice colored with turmeric). In Thai tradition, the shrimp topping should go on the yellow rice.


For 4 Person(s)

Ingredients for coconut milk for topping

Ingredients for khao neeo moon

Ingredients for shrimp topping

Ingredients for custard topping

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Method for Thai Sticky Rice Steeped in Coconut Milk, 'Khao Neeo Moon'

Method for coconut milk for topping

In small sauce pan mix all ingredients well, and heat stirring to prevent lumps. When coconut milk boils, remove from heat. Set aside to be used when serving.

Method For Khao Neeo Moon

In three small mixing bowls: in the first bowl add 1 cup of white sticky rice. In the second bowl add 1 cup of white sticky rice with turmeric powder. In the third bowl add half cup of white sticky rice mix with half cup of black sticky rice. Add water to cover the rice about 2 inches above the rice in each bowl, stir well in each bowl. Let soak over night (to speed up this step, soak each bowl in hot water at least 3 hours). Then rinse each bowl under water and let each drain on colander.

Prepare a stacked steamer by filling 3/4 level of water into the bottom of stack steamer then turn the heat on high let the water come up to a rolling boil. In each layer of the steamer lay a cheesecloth down on the bottom then add each color of sticky rice separately. Put lid on, and let steam over heavy boiling water for 25 minutes (steam each color separately).

While the rice is cooking, dissolve salt and sugar in the coconut milk, and heat, stirring to prevent lumps. When coconut milk boils, remove from heat. Place each color of hot cooked sticky rice in it's own pot with tightly-fitting lid, and pour in one cup of hot (important) coconut milk mixture into each pot. Stir throughly, and cover, and set aside for about 1 hour to allow coconut milk to mingle with the rice thoroughly.

When serving, spoon some of the coconut milk set aside earlier over the rice before adding toppings (see below).

Method for shrimp topping

Chop shrimp and coconut together and add a little orange food coloring. Pound shallot, pepper and coriander powder in a mortar and pestle until ground and mixed thoroughly, and fry in the oil until fragrant, then add shrimp and coconut and fry until done, seasoning to taste with salt and sugar. Remove from pan and sprinkle with sliced kaffir lime leaves.

Method for custard topping

In a blender, mix coconut milk, palm sugar, pandan and eggs until mixed well. Pour into heat proof container such as a ceramic bowl. Place inside stacked steamer over vigorously boiling water for 25-30 minutes.

Serving: As shown below, add coconut milk topping over the white and black rice as you prefer. Add shrimp topping to yellow sweet rice. Custard topping over white and black sweet rice. It's very delicious, savory, exotic and sweet.

Please also see two of our other sticky rice dessert recipes: black sticky rice with sweet coconut milk, and sticky rice with mango.