Talam Kacang Merah (Steamed Cake with Red Beans)

Talam Kacang Merah

Talam Kacang Merah

Talam refers to a tray or in Malay, a dulang whereas Kacang Merah means Red Beans or in this case Red Mung Beans. So I guess the name refers to Red Mung Bean cake in a tray. But  you may say isn’t a cake a kueh in Malay? Honestly, though I am a Malay, I am just as confused between a kueh and a talam. As far as I know, a kueh in Malay typically refers to a snack or dessert. So my guess is, back then it was given this name due to the fact that this kueh is cooked in a metal tray or some may say a wide cake pan which was also used as a tray for serving. Well at least that’s my take on this issue.

I hope I didn’t confuse you with my explanation. Now, the word kueh is more well-known than a talam so you will be understood if using just the word kueh.

I have explained to you the characteristics of traditional Malay kuehs in my previous post and Talam Kacang Merah is no different. It is a steamed cake, made primarily  of rice flour, coconut milk and sugar. It has two layers, one of which contains red beans and is sweet and is usually the bottom layer. The top layer is usually unsweetened, in fact, has a tinge of saltiness, to balance the sweet bottom layer. This top layer is usually thinner than the bottom layer. As for the color, you can color both which ever way you want but rule of thumb is to color each layer differently.

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Serimuka (Steamed Rice Cake with Coconut Custard)

Serimuka aka Putri Salat

Serimuka aka Putri Salat

This is a Malay traditional cake. It is one of the most common cakes you can find in Singapore. There are several common characteristics you will notice in most traditional Malay cakes. They are mostly steamed cakes and almost all makes use of coconut milk because coconuts are aplenty in this region and use rice flour instead of wheat flour because rice is easily and more commonly available in this region.

Traditionally, I was told, rice flour were home-made. The women would soak the rice overnight then drained and grounded to a paste the next day. It will then be wrapped tightly in a piece of cloth. A heavy object is then placed on top of it to exert pressure and squeeze out the water making it to become dry.

But we have come a long way since and now we can buy rice flour in packets from the supermarket. Thank God for that 🙂

Today I will be sharing the recipe for Serimuka or Putri Salat. It is an easy cake to make but there are no shortcuts. This cakes like most Malay cakes, have two layers. The rice layer at the bottom and the custard topping on top. Please see the recipe below.

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Kueh Lompang

Kueh Lompang

Colorful Kueh Lompang

My daughter had an Eid celebration in her school. Days before the event she kept reminding me to bake something for her to bring to class. The refreshment for the event is supposed to be potluck. So I had to come up with something fast.

I decided to make Kueh Lompang because it is sweet and colorful and the children will love it. It is also a simple dessert to make. On the day of the event, I made the Kueh Lompang and she brought it to school. It was a hit. The kids loved it and there were no leftovers.

Kueh Lompang is a traditional Malay cake. It is usually the size of a small cup with a little dent or a small well  in the middle. It is a sweet cake topped with steamed grated coconut that had been seasoned with little salt. This is to balance the sweetness of the cake and give it a creamy taste. It is a colorful cake.

The cooking method is by steaming the batter in little cups until cooked or firm. To store any leftovers, the cakes should be stored in the fridge in an airtight container. You need to microwave it if you intend to eat it after it has been chilled. Store the grated coconut separately from the cakes.

It is great for children’s parties and you can add flavor to the batter.

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Kueh Makmur (Properous Biscuit?)

Kueh Makmur Tradisional

Traditional Kueh Makmur

Hmmm..I don’t really know the English translation for this cookie’s name  however I do know that makmur in Malay is ‘prosperous’ in English. And maybe  kueh makmur is just a name and does not mean anything. Anyone care to shed some light?

By far, this is the most difficult biscuit or cookie (I always don’t know which word suits best so I will refer to all kueh as cookie in my blog).

Ok, where were we? Oh yes, I spent a sleepless night trying to finish this cookie. I have never in my entire life, dozed off trying to make a cookie but it happened. I was truly exhausted and it was taking too long. I ‘accidentally’ dozed off for a second or two.

There I was in the middle of the night, alone, sitting by the kitchen table with bowls of raw dough waiting its turn to be shaped. Waiting its fate. As I was just about to start, it began to rain. Light showers first then the thunders came but it did not deter me. Once I have completed everything, it was already time for sahur (pre-dawn meal before the fast starts). Continue reading

Kueh Tart (Pineapple Tarts)

Kueh Tart for baking“Selamat Aidilfitri pada saudara serta saudari, setahun hanya sekali merayakan hari yang mulia ini…”  As I listened to this song by Saloma it lifted my spirits and I seem to enjoy more in whatever I am doing and I just can’t help myself but hum along with it. We are just two days shy of the celebrated Hari Raya and I can’t wait for the big day to come. I hope my Muslim readers look forward to it too.

Honestly, I have a backlog of recipes I want to share with you but just couldn’t find the time to type and post recently. But now that I have completed all my baking, I have spare time to blog.

The recipe today as my title suggests is Kueh Tart or Pineapple Tart. It’s a popular cookie found in most Malay Muslim household during the Hari Raya celebration and also during Chinese New Year celebrated by the Chinese in Singapore. Continue reading

Kueh Bangkit

Kueh BangkitIn my last post, I told you of my experience trying out the recipes I found online. I have started making the cookies for Hari Raya Aidilfitri in full steam. My second biscuit recipe I want to share is Kueh Bangkit.

I have made so many adjustments to the original recipe I found in a magazine that I felt that the writer don’t deserve the credit for me to mention him. As usual there was no mention how long to bake, he even forgot to mention what to do with an ingredient he listed in the recipe and the most important step to toast or bake the flour or else you will end up with a tough cookie 😦 Yes, I went through that painful process and yes, this is my second attempt.

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Biskut Suji (Semolina Biscuits)

Biskut Suji (Semolina Biscuit)

Biskut Suji (Semolina Biscuit)

Hari Raya Aidilfitri is just around the corner. Time passed by so fast and the next thing you know, you have to get busy with the preparations. One of the many things most Malay households have to prepare are the kueh-mueh or the Hari Raya biscuits or cakes. The usual question is “Dah beli kueh? Beli ke buat?” in English it’s “Have you bought the biscuits or cakes for Hari Raya? Did you make or buy it?”.

Well, this year after so many years I am making it myself. The hubby suggests to buy it as usual. But I want to try baking the biscuits. This is a good opportunity to test recipes and compile the best ones for future use and share it with my loved ones and friends. So I started with something simple (or so I thought..) like making Biskut Suji. Continue reading