Okay, so I am reminising the many sweet, savory, deep-fried and wonderful snacks and breakfast options of South-East Asia, and there so many different wonderful choices for a fun breakfast each day of the month. My Cheerios cereal gets pretty boring after a while. Today, I wanted to make chwee kuih. It's nothing fancy, and it's kinda like that greesy cheeseburger that I crave once in a while. Okay, so chwee kuih is not that greasey (just the toppings), but it's loaded with carbs if consumed it in mass quantities. Used to hop down to the food court to get chwee kuih every Sunday morning as a kid, and there were usually 4 packets of oily chee kuih lathered in spicy chili paste and one without (mine). These soft, little rice cakes are steamed and topped with saute minced garlic, dried radish (chai-po) and seasonings. Some years ago, I had some homemade ones at a friend's house that was made by her mom with some minced meat added to it, and it was yummy. Finally found this recipe on the web, made it, and wolfed in down with a a ice cold glass of Milo. Craving's gone.... for now, or until I find another better recipe (heh).
Recipe adapted from asiarecipe.com/sindesserts.html#Kway
1 cup rice flour
2 1/4 cups water
1 heaped tbs corn flour
3 tps oil
170g Lard (omitted)
half tsp salt
2 tsp sesame seeds
2 cloves garlic, flattened with cleaver
2/3 c vegetable oil
2/3 c chopped, preserved, salted radish
dash of pepper
dark soy sauce
1 tsp sugar
To cook rice cake
Mix two types of flour with water
Add salt and 1 tsp of oil, beat well
Stir mixture over low heat till it thickens, keep stiring to prevent lumps
Arrange steel moulds in a bamboo steamer over boiling water and steam empty moulds for 5 mins
Pour mixture into moulds and steam for 10-15 mins or till well cooked
Remove from bamboo steamer and leave to cool for 10mins before serving.
Note: test the constituency of the rice cake mixture first by steaming 1-2 moulds. If rice cake is too hard, add more water to mixture. If rice cake is too soft, add more rice flour.
To cook the radish
Toast the sesame seeds till golden brown
Fry garlic in remaining oil in a saucepan until brown
Add radish to remaining oil, cook over low heat for 30mins, stirring occasionally to prevent burning
Add sesame seeds, stir well. Add pepper, soy sauce to taste
Remove rice cakes from moulds after 10 mins of cooling
Place a spoonful of cooked radish onto each rice cake
Serve with chilli sauce if desired.
Firstly, I half the recipe.
My version - For the rice cakes, I added finely chopped green onions into the batter to add a little variety and texture into the cakes. For the radish, you can substitute dried shrimp (haebee) for the toasted sesame seeds, but my family liked the taste of sesame seeds better. I used seasoned ground turkey with the garlic oil and a small amount of radish when I made this today so as to get some protein into my kids who were enjoying their steamed rice cakes. Also sprinkled some paprika on top for color. Not very authentic, but taste good with the ground turkey.