Friday, November 5, 2010

Soon Kueh

My little girl loves to eat Soon Kueh, those with BangKwang (沙葛 or turnips) fillings, and not with the real "soon" (笋 or bamboo shoots).  While Soon Kueh is available from most hawker centres, I find most of the Soon Kueh has too much MSG or too heavily spiced with pepper, such that you need to down a glass of water after eating one.  Why not try making it at home, I thought.

Soon Kueh

Since this is the first time that I am making this, I bought a pre-mix packet of Soon Kueh flour (from supermarket) where the various flours (rice flour, tapioca flour, wheat flour, corn flour etc) are proportionately mixed in one packet. Ingredients for the fillings are quite standard - bangkwang, carrot, dried shrimps, mushrooms.  

Ingredients (makes about 18 Soon Kueh)
260g Soon Kueh Flour
1 medium bangkwang, approx. 400g (shredded)
1 to 2 carrots (shredded)
2 tbsp dried shrimps (soaked and roughly chop, reserved liquid)
3 to 4 Chinese mushrooms (soaked and sliced, reserved liquid)
3 cloves garlic (minced)
2 slices ginger
5 to 6 shallots - sliced
Seasonings: 2 tbsp oyster sauce, 1 tsp sesame oil, salt/pepper to taste.

1) In a wok, fry shallots in oil till light and crispy, drain on kitchen paper.
2) Pour shallot oil into container, leaving 2 tbsp in wok.  Add ginger and mushrooms, stir fry till fragrant.  Add dried shrimps and garlic, stir fry till fragrant.
3) Add bangkwang and carrots, stir-fry together with all the ingredients in wok.  Add water (including water used to soak dried shrimps and mushrooms) to reach half the height of the ingredients (as the bangkwang will release water during cooking).  Add oyster sauce.
4) Cover and simmer over medium-low heat for an hour.  Check and give it a few stir in-between simmering to ensure even cooking and adjust salt to taste.
5) Add sesame oil, half the fried shallots, a dash of pepper and give it a quick stir.
6) Let the fillings cool completely before wrapping.

Making the skin dough
1) Pour 500ml boiling water to 260g Soon Kueh flour.  Add 1 tbsp oil and stir with chopstick.  
2) Pour sticky dough on clean counter top (or silicone mat) and use a scraper to mix the dough.  Let it rest for 10 minutes.
3) Roll the dough, divide into 18 pieces and roll each into a round disc.  Alternatively, you can roll the whole dough into a large sheet and cut round disc using a rice bowl.  You will need some more tapioca flour to dust your hands and rolling pin while working on the skin dough.
4) Scoop one tablespoon fillings on each soon kueh skin, fold into semi-circle and seal by pinching the edges. 5) Place on well-greased steaming rack and steam over high heat for 10 minutes.
6) Brush the soon kueh with shallot oil.

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