We are Teochews, and this ‘pink kueh’ is a Teochew delicacy. My mother-in-law always makes ‘pink kueh’ for my girls when they go back to visit Singapore. It is one of the snack we have come to expect when we arrive late at night in Singapore. She would fire up the wok in the middle of the night and pan fry the kueh till the skin was brown and crispy to satisfy our cravings. We like to drizzle lots of sweet soy sauce over it.
My daughter came home for Thanksgiving and asked for the ‘pink kueh’. Hope my attempt is at least half as good as Grandma’s. For the real deal, they have to wait for the next trip home.
(A) Glutinous Rice Filling
- 500g glutinous rice
- 8 dried shitake mushrooms, soaked
- 2 pairs of Chinese sausage, diced
- 1 cup chopped Chinese celery
- 2 Tbsp minced garlic
- 1/2 cup thinly sliced shallots
- 1 can (5.3 oz) braised peanuts, drained
- 1 Tbsp soy sauce
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp white pepper
- 1 tsp chicken bouillon granules
- 3 Tbsp canola oil
- 320g rice flour
- 120g tapioca flour
- 600 ml boiling water
- 2 tsp salt
- 4 tsp shallot oil
- 4 drops pink food coloring
To prepare the filling:
- Soak glutinous rices in water for 3 hours. Drain and set aside.
- Squeeze and dice the soaked mushrooms.
- Brown diced Chinese sausage in wok, drain and discard the oil. Set browned sausage aside.
- Heat oil in wok and fry minced garlic and shallots until it starts to brown. Add the diced mushrooms and fry until fragrant.
- Turn up the heat and add the glutinous rice, braised peanuts, chopped Chinese celery, soy sauce, salt, pepper, and chicken bouillon granules. Stir fry for 3 minutes. Stir in the browned Chinese sausage.
- Transfer the glutinous rice mixture to a round shallow pan. Spread the glutinous rice out evenly and add water to just below the surface of the glutinous rice.
- Steam the glutinous rice for 20 minutes or until the water has dried up and the rice is cooked. The rice should not be overcooked or it becomes too soft and mushy.
- Rake the glutinous rice with a fork and set aside to cool.
To prepare the dough:
- Mix rice flour and tapioca flour in a large bowl.
- Boil 600ml water and add salt and pink food coloring to the boiling water.
- Make a well in the center of the flour mixture. Pour the boiling hot water in it. Mix the flour quickly with a wooden spoon until a dough is formed. Add shallot oil and mix well.
- Turn the dough out onto a cool surface lightly dusted with tapioca flour. Dust your hands with flour and knead the dough until it becomes smooth, about 15 minutes. Divide the dough into 22 dough balls and cover them with a wet towel to avoid drying out.
- Roll each dough ball into a round disc. Dust the ‘png kueh’ mold with a little tapioca flour (turn it over to knock out the excess flour). Place the rolled out dough loosely over the mold and scoop some filling into it.
- Press the filling into the mold gently, then flip the dough to cover the top. Seal it by pressing the top gently with your hand/fingers. Turn the mold over and press down on the work surface.
- Unmold the kueh by give the mold a gentle knock. Trim off excess dough using a knife.
- Line the steamer with a large piece of greased banana leaf and bring the water to a boil.
- Arrange the ‘png kuehs’ on the banana leaf and steam over low heat for about 15 minutes.
- Brush some shallot oil on the ‘png kuehs’ when it is cooked.
- Serve steamed kueh warm with sweet soy sauce.
- Alternatively, pan fry the kueh in a skillet until the skin is brown and crispy.