I am a fan of Nyonya Kuehs, I always like to buy the kuehs from Bengawan Solo and treated as a dessert to complete my lunch. Many a time if I didn't feel like eating a proper lunch, I just ate the Nyonya Kuehs with a cup of coffee. My favorite Nyonya Kuehs are Ang Ko Kueh, Kueh Da Dar and some other Durian kuehs.
I find Nyonya Kueh in Malaysia is tastier than Singapore. It's so rich and fragrant. Everytime I go to KL or Malacca, I always like to hunt for it.
In Singapore, beside Bengawan Solo and a handful good one out there, others are not up to mark. Many of them, their texture is so tough and not much taste. It's just chewy with a lot of colouring.
When I noticed our higher certificate's syllable includes Nyonya Desserts module, I thought it was weird as Nyonya desserts are mainly steamed and cooked stuffs, how that fit into Baking and Pastry. Anyway, I was quite happy since I had no experience making Nyonya Kueh, it's a good opportunity to learn something new. Moreover, both I and my elder daughter love to eat Nyonya Kueh, I would be able to make it myself after acquired the techniques.
In fact, making Nyonya dessert is not difficult. We learned how to make Onde Onde, Kui Bingka Ubi, Goreng Pisang, Pulut Inti, Pulut Hitam and Kuih Koci. The key ingredients in Nyonya desserts are rice flour, granted coconut, coconut milk, Pandan leaves, Gula Melaka, tropical fruits and dry spices.
Talking about ingredients, we learned how to prepare the Gula Melaka, Panda leaves, Banana leaves, Goreng Pisang, Coconut, Glutinous Rice, Tapioca and etc. Some of the take away here.
- Gula Melaka - dissolve Gula Melaka in the water over medium heat and before using, it should be strained to get rid of sediments and impurities.
- Pandan Leaves - Rub the Pandan leaves to release fragrant and tie them to a knot. Only add them to the end of the cooking (5-10 mins before) to minimize fragrant dissipate.
- Banana Leaves - Run the Banana leaf under running water or wipe with a damp cloth. Before using, it should be blanched for a few minutes so that it becomes pliable for wrapping and folding.
- Goreng Pisang - Oil has to be preheated to high temperature before frying to achieve crispiness and golden brown colour. Always heat the oil to regain the desired temperature between each frying batch.
- Fresh coconut and coconut milk - Always steam it or parboil it before using to ensure the coconut is sterilized without turning bad.
- Glutinous Rice - Always soak them over night to reduce cooking time.
- Tapioca - Always soak it in water for a few hours and squeeze out the water to remove the bitterness.
I was overdosed with coconut, glutinous rice and Gula Melaka by end of the module, I think I can take a break from eating Nyonya Kueh for a while. I need to on diet after this higher certificate course as I have been consuming high calories and unhealthy desserts since the course started :<
So glad that this week is a short week for us, only 2.5 days class. Now, I'm free to enjoy and celebrate X'mas holiday!