“Lihing” (rice wine) the local Kadazan alcoholic beverage.

by | May 15, 2015 | 0 comments

Lihing is a type of rice wine which is brewed by the indigenous Kadazan people of Penampang.
It is made from a type of glutinous rice that is known as “Vagas Pulut”.  Vagas Pulut is used because it is rich with sugar.  Lihing is fermented by using “Sasad” which is a natural yeast.

How to Brew Lihing

1. Firstly, you have to cook the glutinous rice. To brew a few bottles of Lihing, a “Sagantang” ( or about 3.5kg) of “Vagas” (rice) is normally required. Pour water with the ratio of one “Puut” (cup) of water to one puut of rice (1:1).  Cook the water and rice mixture over a slow burning fire. Traditionally, the rice is cooked with “Suduvon” (firewood).

2. Once the rice is cooked, you spread it out on a “Kohintung” to cool. The Kohintung is a tray that is made from young bamboo strips and sometimes rattan.

3. The third step is to prepare the yeast while you wait for the rice to cool. The yeast typically comes in blocks from the local market so you have to pound the sasad  until it become a fine powder.  

4. When the rice has cooled sufficiently it is time to pour the sasad on to the rice.  The rice and sasad must be mixed well or you might have trouble with the fermentation process.

5. The last step before fermentation is to dump the mixture into the “Bunduon” (ceramic jar).  Once the jar is full, you will cover it with “Loun Timadang” (Tarap Leaves) and let it sit for a month.

6. After a month open the lid then put a “tataas” (scoop made of bamboo) into the Bunduon to scoop out the Lihing and transfer it into a bottle.
Lihing is normally served as a drink during all major indigenous celebrations, it is also used for cooking especially to cook the “Sup Lihing” ( chicken soup mixed with rice wine).
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