Yam (aka Taro) Kueh 竽頭糕

By Tuesday, October 18, 2011

The motivation to made this kueh came from Aspiring Baker (AB), hosted by Small Small Baker. Ever since my failed attempt to make a pumpkin kueh last year, I'm been afraid to make any sorts of kueh again. Nobody wanted to eat that kueh, and I had a hard time finishing it (i couldn't possibly share or give it to anyone... it's too embarassing!)

So this time, when I learnt about the theme for this month's AB, I went to dig out a blog post I had secretly marked out... It was a post I bookmarked, hoping that some inspiration will strike one day. It did!

This is a recipe shared by Maameemoomoo. Even before I steamed the kueh, the smell of the dried shrimps and mushroom lingering on my finger (due to my contact with the ingredients from dicing it) smelled so good! In all, it is pretty easy to prepare. The little grouse I have is the amount of dicing I have to do, and to ensure that all the ingredients are chopped finely. It took me about an hour to prepare all  the ingredients. Could this be due to my lack of skills in cutting? I don't know, but I was happy to see that I managed to keep the ingredients about the same size. Yeah.. this means the ingredients are more likely to be evenly cooked.

So how did it all turn out?

I liked it... and with each bite you take, you will be able to taste chunks of soft yam. However, dear found it ok only. He finds the texture too dense for his liking, probably due to the many chunks of yam used. He also feedback it's not as fragant as those sold outside. I can only say it's a healthier version! Overall, it still tastes good (at least to me), and if you want a stronger taste, top off with fried shallots and sesame seeds, or you can eat it with sweet sauce/ chilli sauce.

Recipe: (from maameemoomoo)

Makes 1 round metal container (diameter : 27cm)

300g rice flour – soak in 900ml water, for at least 30 minutes before cooking
700g yam – diced into 1 cm cube, and soak in a basin of water
50-100g lean meat – diced finely *(I use 70g)
6 dried mushrooms – soak in water until soft, wash thoroughly and dice finely
8 tbsp dried prawns – soak in water till soft; pound it up *(As i don't have a pestle and mortar, i just chopped it up finely)
5 tbsp sesame oil
2 tsp of salt
1 tsp of white pepper

1. Using a wok, stir fry pounded dried prawns in sesame oil for 3 mins till fragrant
2. Add diced meat and mushrooms and fry for another 2 – 3 mins
3. Drain diced yam, and add to the fried ingredients and fry
4. Fry well for 2-3 mins till yam changes colour
5. Stir rice water mixture first till well blended, then pour into wok
6. Combine all ingredients and stir vigorously to prevent clumping at the base
7. Add salt and pepper to taste
8. When mixture thickens, turn off fire
9. Transfer half cooked mixture to a container for steaming
10. Steam for 30-40 mins. Test for 'doneness': diced yam breaks easily when you prick with fork
11. Let cool, before cutting it up

Modifications I would make the next time:
  • add in some tapoica flour (according to my reserach, this will make the kueh softer)
  • mash half the yam (for less 'chunky' texture)
  • fry some shallots, keep half to use as garnish, mix half into the kueh
  • keep the oil used for frying shallot to cook the rest of the ingredients (definitely will enhance the fragance)
  • use more lean meat, perhaps 100g  (i couldn't quite taste it in the kueh)
  • some bloggers have also added extra ingredients like dried sausage

As dear liked a less healthy kueh, we pan-fried it the next day. That added a whole new depth to the dish!

If I was asked to choose between eating it steamed or pan-fried, I would definitely go for.... pan-fried!! That being said, it is also nice when steamed. It's up to you how you like to have it =)

You Might Also Like