Thursday, July 5, 2012

A short tale of Kuihs - Red Hot Spatula

As most of you are aware, Carolanne and I organise the Perth Clandestine Cake Club (CCC), and last months theme was gluten free. To see the awesome range we got from our talented bakers, have a look at THIS post. It was a day of cake heaven! One of the cakes that was a real standout was the one that broke the rules of the CCC - ONLY CAKE ALLOWED! These were mini cakes, and as Yvonne from Red Hot Spatula explained, thats just how they are served in Singapore, where they originated. So it was totally fine with us when Yvonne showed up with these renegade cakes. They had a really unique texture, a subtle flavour and loads of fresh coconut mixed with a bit of salt on top. They were really something special!

So you guys are all lucky enough to get the recipe, and this guest post from Yvonne of Red Hot Spatula!

A short tale of Kuihs

Growing up in Singapore, I was always spoilt for choice when it came to food. The absolute favourite time of day –especially weekends- was afternoon tea. In Asia there are dedicated shops selling all manner of savory or sweet delicious bites. 

One huge thing I took for granted was all the gluten free options we had. Back when I was little, gluten was not even thought of as a meal definer. Now, practically every other person you meet wants to have some sort of gluten free option available.

The local bakery – which is now a huge baking franchise in South East Asia – had more than just one or 2 things on their menu which I now know is gluten free. So, feeling nostalgic for tastes of the yesteryear and wanting to create a gluten free option for the Clandestine Cake Club I decided to bring out the Kuih Kosui – a fabulous bite sized cake made with rice flour, green pea flour and tapioca flour with the added plus of being dairy free, as well as using coconut sugar. I did not even know it, but I had hit the motherload of the holy trinity of what a percentage of people are now learning to use (to think I was brought up on this)!

Kuih – the Malay/Bahasa name for cake- is always served in small individual serves and in a variety, being, of course, the spice of life, in comparison to western cakes which are whole and often shared as such.

Now, the story behind the Kuih Kosui is quite interesting – it is a cross culture cake brought in from Indonesia, loved in Singapore and greatly duplicated by everyone.

Asian Kuih’s are mostly steamed, not baked, and always using natural colourings to bring forth a variety of festive colours. Some Kuihs are made traditionally to celebrate weddings, birthdays and even 1 month anniversaries of a baby’s birth. 

I can go on at length and wax lyrical about the history of the Kuihs – because there are heaps and heaps of tasty options, some savoury and some sweet. It’s more interesting to talk about the recipe though!


180 gm wet rice flour* (knead 105g rice flour with 75ml water and knead it)
50 gm green peas flour
30 gm tapioca flour
240 ml water
1 tsp alkaline water (lye/ki water - from asian shops)

240 gm dark coconut sugar
540 ml water

To serve
200g fresh desiccated coconut
1/2 tsp salt

Boiled ingredients (B), set aside.

Combine all ingredients (A) and mix well.

Mix in the ingredient (B)in the flour mixture and strain.

Use LOW heat to cook the batter until slightly thick.

Pour into a small tart mould and steam on a high heat for about 15 minutes until cooked.

Steam the coconut for 10 minutes after you remove the Kuihs from the steamer. Mix in the salt and toss well.

Once the Kuihs are cooled, roll them in the dessicated coconut.

Ready to serve!

Check out Red Hot Spatula on their facebook page, as well as at Subiaco Farmers Market where they sell their delicious range of spice pastes! See also this post from Col Panna with a special deal on her products!

1 comment:

  1. This was one of my highlights, thanks for sharing the recipe Yvonne!