I have a friend that can skip a meal but she cannot live without her desserts. This page is dedicated to my sweet tooth friend. Here are some of the delicious Malaysian desserts I have experimented in my kitchen: Long Life Cake (Ang Ku Kueh 紅龜粿), Deep Fried Bananas (Goreng Pisang), Peanut Pancake (Min Jiang Kuih or Ban Chian Kuih), Pandan Chiffon Cake, 9 Layer Cake (Kuih Lapis). I also attempted other desserts like Black Forest Cake. Here is an easy dessert to make, a great compliment to a cup of coffee, almond crisps.
My husband loves any dessert with red bean. A couple years ago, we were in Richmond Vancouver Canada’s night market with some friends and we tasted warm Dorayaki for the first time.
This next dessert is not necessarily a Malaysian dessert but it has become our family’s favorite dessert. The reason is the cake’s fluffy texture and the flavorful creme filling. A nicely baked Coffee SwissRoll will awe your guests for sure.
Ma Lai Gou (馬拉糕) is my brother in law’s favourite dish. And now, it has become one of our family’s favourite. The original recipe calls for evaporated milk but since I don’t stock that at home, I have substitute that with regular milk and it tastes good. Once, I ran out of fresh milk and I use a water and a little milk powder and that worked well too. The original recipe also calls for baking soda but I completely omit that ingredient as I don’t like the taste of baking soda in my cakes.
There is a local sushi restaurant that serves complimentary Mousse as part of their lunch bento. I am glad to have found this easy Chocolate Mousse recipe, so when I have cravings, I can make it myself.
Ma Lai Gou (馬拉糕)
11/2 cups brown sugar
3/4 cup evaporated milk or fresh milk or water and milk powder
5 drops of vanilla extract
1/2 cup butter (melted)
2 cups flour
1 Tablespoon baking powder
baking pan (10 5/8″ x 12″ x 2 3/8″)
a note on the baking pan: the recipe lists the size as above. Since I only have a square one, that was what I used. I separated the batter into two parts because the cake will rise too high and stick to my bamboo steamer.
1) beat eggs and brown sugar for 5 minutes until thick and cream colored. Add milk, vanilla and melted butter and beat for 1 minute.
2) Sift flour and baking powder and fold into the above mixture.
3) Lined the baking pan with parchment paper. Pour the batter into the lined paper and place it in a high heat steamer. Continue in high heat for 30 minutes. Remove and allow to cool. Cut and serve.
Ang Ku Kuih 紅龜粿
Who wouldn’t want to eat a long life cake? I would like to introduce you to an Asian dessert that is shaped like a tortoise. Tortoise symbolize long life in the chinese culture. The fillings of this desert can be either red bean (Taiwanese Style) or mung bean (Malaysian Style). The skin is made out of glutinous rice. The mold that I use has the word longevity in the center. Quite appropriate, don’t you think? Tortoise and longevity?
I attempted making this dessert using sweet potato paste and glutinous rice for the skin and it was a success. It was my beige-colored tortoise cake.
Traditionally, this long life cake is in red. Hence, the Hokkein name, “Ang Ku“, Ang stands for red and Ku stands for tortoise. Nowadays, health conscience people are starting to omit the red or orange food coloring. The first time I made these tortoise cakes, I used Lily‘s recipe, and substituted banana leaf with parchment paper. It turned out pretty well, right?
Thanks Mom and 4th sister for sending the mold. The following is my latest attempt in making this dessert. Instead of using banana leaf, I used bamboo leaf. For the filling, I used home made red bean.
After mastering the sweet version, I searched on the internet for a salty version. Here’s a link to the Ang Ku with ground pork and chai po filling. If I can eat two of the sweet green bean filling, I think I can eat at least four of the savory version.
Deep Fried Banana
(Goreng Pisang in Malay) is one of my favourite Malaysian hawker food. The batter is a combination of an egg white, water, equal parts of rice flour and all-purpose flour with a touch of salt. This batter sticks very well to the banana. I used the left over batter to deep fry some Sweet Potato slices. In Malaysia, we eat the goreng pisang as is. Over here, I westernized it by serving it in a nice bowl with a scoop of ice cream and decorate it with a cherry.
(Min Jiang Kuih or Ban Chian Kuih)
This is also known as Ban Chian Koay (in Hokkein language). I remember eating this snack, growing up in Malaysia. Sis said that Mom used to buy at the Night Market (Pasar Malam).
Later, when I went to Taiwan to visit my in-laws, I had it again. The fillings were sweetened red bean, instead of peanuts. Eating food at hawker stands is almost never sanitary. I remember one of the hawkers (of course, not the one that was serving my food), had one hand picking his nose, and the other hand scratching his butt. It is strange that you are not aware of this when you are little kids. I highly recommend that you try out this recipe because it is not too complicated and it does not take up a whole day to make it. It will be a great snack or breakfast. My kids love them.
I do not have a cast iron pan, so I used a non stick pan to make this. If you like bigger kueh, use a bigger pan and put more ladle of batter into your pan. After making the first one, you will get an idea, on how much batter to put in your next one. I have used the following recipes numerous times. It is well tested. Please pay attention to my notes in parenthesis. It will ensure that you are successful as well.
(reference: Hawker’s Galore – A guide to Penang Hawker Food)
230 gm plain flour
2 tsp castor sugar
1 egg beaten
2 cups water/milk
3 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
4 tsp oil
Sift flour, baking powder, sugar and salt into a mixing bowl. Make a well in the center and add in egg, liquid and oil. Mix into a smooth batter and allow to stand for at least 2 hours. (Since the batter has egg, make sure you refrigerate your batter.)
4 tsp castor sugar
2 tsp roasted sesame seeds
6 tsp peanuts roasted and ground
4 tsp butter
Traditional pan used for making this pancake is a heavy, cast iron pan used over a coal fire. To obtain best results, it is recommended that a heavy base 16 cm frying pan be used if the original pan is not available. Heat the pan over fairly high heat. Spoon a ladle of the batter in the pan and spread it evenly. When mixture turns translucent, sprinkle sugar, ground peanut and sesame seeds evenly over the surface. Dab with butter. (Turn the heat to low. Cover pan to ensure even heating.) Cook for another 3 minutes; remove pancake and fold in two. Serve hot.
Pandan Chiffon Cake
After many failures, I finally found a Pandan Chiffon Cake recipe that works. Thanks to Little Corner of Mine. Lee Ping’s notes: I usually do step 3 and then step 2. Make sure your bowl and egg beater tool is free from oil. Oil will prevent the egg from rising. If the coconut milk is to thick, it is OK to add a little more water. Also, you can reduce a little sugar. If you reduce too much sugar, make sure you reduce the salt as well. Otherwise your pandan chiffon cake will taste too salty.
1 3/4 cup all-purpose flour,
sifted1 Tbp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup vegetable or canola oil or olive oil
6 egg yolks
3/4 cup coconut milk
1 tsp. pandan paste
6 egg whites
1/2 tsp. cream of tartar
3/4 cup sugar
1. Preheat oven to 350’F (175’C).
2. Combine (A) in a bowl. Stir well to blend. Make a hole in the center of the mixture. Put (B) in the center. Beat with an electric mixer until smooth, from inside first. Note: it is important that you beat well. I took at least 4 to 5 minutes.
3. Put (C) in a clean big bowl, egg white in the center, sugar and cream of tartar on the side. Note: it is important that the bowl and beater is clean. Beat (C) until moist peaks formed. Beat egg white first and gradually incorporate the sugar and cream of tartar into the mixture, until stiff and shiny peaks are formed. Fold 1/3 of the egg whites into the egg yolks mixture, fold to mix and then add the rest of the egg whites. Fold gently but thoroughly. Note: it is important to mix thoroughly, but gently. Turn batter into ungreased 10″ tube pan.
4. Bake for 60 mins or til a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Invert cake and cool completely in pan. When cool, loosen the edges and shake pan to remove cake.
This recipe is from Lily.
I modified it slightly by playing with the colors. I alternated the layers with white and green and end it with red.
Black Forest Cake
Black Forest Cake is a well known dessert all around the world. Typically, this cake consists of several layers of chocolate cake, with whipped cream and sour cherries between each layer. The top layer is covered with additional whipped cream, maraschino cherries, and chocolate shavings. What I like most about this dessert is the addition of Kirschwasser, a cherry liquor.
This is my first attempt at making Lily’s Black Forest Cake. Thank you Auntie Lily for this recipe. I was tempted to cut a small piece of cake to eat when it first came out of the oven because of the cocoa aroma.
The following will continue to be my challenges in my next attempt in making this cake:
1) equal 3 cake layers.
2) perfect spreadable whip cream (whip cream that is under whipped will be runny, whip cream that is over whipped is not spreadable and will taste and look like butter.
Today is a special day because Little Tiger turned 9 years old.
A sister at church shared this recipe with me a couple of years ago. Whenever I serve this biscuit, people always asks me for recipe. My mother in law was so impressed with the taste and the ingredients that she brought this recipe back to Taiwan to share with the relatives. It is low in cholesterol because I use only egg white and olive oil.
The ingredients are 3 egg whites, 1/4 cup flour, 1/3 cup sugar, 2 tbsp oil and 1 1/2 cup thin sliced roasted almonds.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees Celcius. Spread the above mixture thinly across a silpat. If you don’t have a silpat, cover the baking sheet with foil and spray baking sheet with pam (butter).
Bake on mid shelf for 16 minutes. The sides usually turn brown first. I cover the sides with aluminium foil, close the oven door and turn off the heat. Just leave the almond cookie crisps in the oven. Alternatively, you can break the brown sides and put the rest back into the oven, turn off the oven heat and leave the almond cookie crisps in the oven.
When you try to break the cookie crisps, it should be easy to break. If not, it is not dry enough. The oven still has some left-over heat, put it back into the oven.
I like my cookies broken into random pieces. However, it is possible to cut the cookies into equal pieces. The cutting should be done on a cutting board using a pizza cutter while it is still soft before it turn brown and dry.
Dorayaki Japanese Red Bean Cake
Since this was my first attempt, the pancake did not turn out as pretty. Since I did not let the batter rest long enough, the pancake was a little dense. I learned that I have to turn the stove to “low” for making this pancake, otherwise, it will burn. I scoop out about 2 tbsp of batter to make two small pancakes, 1 tbsp each on my non-stick pan. Without much wait, I place a few Red Beans in the center of one of the pancake. When I see the sides begin to set, I gently lift up the pancake and place it on top of the other pancake that has Red Bean.
I am definitely making Dorayaki again because my family loves this.
Pineapple Cake (鳳梨酥)
15 years ago, my student gave me a box of petite square cakes that were wrapped in gold. It was pineapple cake and absolutely delicious. Since then, I have been trying to replicate the recipe. I used square stainless steel molds from Taiwan to create these cakes.
I saved a commercial box from Taiwan and reuse it for presentation. The wrapper and ties were purchased from Taiwan by relatives. Thank you very much!!
Recipe (makes 25)
Butter 3/4 cup (168g) (1stick+4Tbsp)
Shortening 1/4 cup (4 Tbsp)
powder sugar 3/4 cup (105 g)
egg 1 1/2 (90g)
vanilla 1 tsp (5g)
low gluten flour or all purpose flour 3 1/2 cup (385 g)
milk powder 1/2 cup (50 g)
pineapple filling 1 1/4 lb (568 g) I blend a fresh pineapple and cook just the pulp with sugar in a nonstick pot.
Mix all the ingredients except the pineapple filling. Make into 25 balls.
For the pineapple filling, make 25 balls.
Now comes the only challenging part. Put the filling into the pastry ball and then fit them into the square mold.
Bake at 400 degrees Fahrenheit for 10 minutes.
Flip over and bake for another 9 minutes.
I use a silpat for all my mixing and baking. I also use silpat to make almond crisps.
Makes approximately 6 espresso sized cups
70g good quality dark chocolate
1 tsp granulated gelatine
2 tbsp hot water
1 egg at room temperature
1 egg yolk at room temperature
150 ml thickened cream
Melt the chocolate and set aside. Place the gelatine in a bowl and dissolve with hot water, stirring continuously. Strain the gelatine to make sure you get rid of any lumps. In a separate bowl, beat the egg and the egg yolk until light and fluffy, then stir in the melted chocolate. Very quickly, mix in the gelatine.
In another bowl, whip the cream until just thickened and then fold into the chocolate mixture. Fill your cups or moulds with the mousse, then refrigerate for at least 3 hours before serving.
For a mousse variation, try Strawberry White Chocolate Mousse.
If you are hesitant to use raw eggs, the following recipe just calls for two ingredients, heavy cream and chocolate. Super simple!
recipe by Diana’ Dessert (adapted from Jacques Torres)
1 quart heavy cream
14 ounces bittersweet chocolate, melted
Whip the cream to soft peaks and add about 1/3 of the melted chocolate. Fold gently with a rubber spatula. Mix the remaining chocolate into the whipped cream. Mix only until combined, as you will deflate the cream if you overmix. Place the mousse in a large pastry bag and pipe into decorative serving cups.