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Friday, October 21, 2011

Kuih Talam

A lack of proper sized tray led to the extra wide kuih talam

Kuih Talam is one of my favorites. I never fail to order this whenever I gave myself a Bengawan Solo treat. I would have loved it even more had it not been for the bitter layer , due to the alkaline water ingredient.

And here, while I crank up the kuih momentum, I decided to fix the bitterness once and for all. Baking soda was used in place of alkaline water and the addition of gula malaka erased all un-yummy experiences I had with all the  kuih talams in the world.

After the outcry of the less than generous coconut custard top of the previous project ( seri muka ), I wanted to do right by this one.

Needless to say, I was pleased with the end result ; earthy gula without the bitter aftertaste and a generous amount of coconut layer with sugar tweaked low to satisfy my craving without adding on the carbo guilt.

There is always areas to improve in the looks department, but for now, I am taking baby steps while celebrating the success of my first kuih talam.

Ingredients for bottom layer:

25g rice flour
6g tapioca flour
1/2 tbsp hoonkueh flour
70g gula malaka , melted
1/2 t  pandan paste ( from Phoon Huat  )
120g water
1 tbsp coconut milk,
1/8 tsp baking soda dissolved in 1/8 tsp of water

Ingredients for top layer:
2 tbsp rice flour
2 tbsp hoonkueh flour
1 tbsp sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
250 g  coconut milk

Preparing bottom layer :

Microwave to melt gula malaka in a cup, 20 sec with 1/2 T water.

Combine  flours in a pot.

Mix pandan paste , water with the flours until well combined.

Add  soda water.

Drizzle a steady but thin stream of gula into the batter, whisking constantly.

Pour mixture over a low fire until batter becomes fairly thick and translucent but still runny. 

Pour batter into a steaming tray ( I use an aluminium tray, 7x3x2 inches ) .

Steam bottom layer of the kuih until batter is firm and cooked,  15 minutes.

Prepare  the top layer :

Combine flour, sugar and salt into a mixing bowl; gradually pour in coconut milk, stir well until smooth.

Cook on low heat  until mixture thickens slightly.

Strain the coconut cream batter on to bottom layer. Steam on medium heat , foil covered,15-20 minutes.

Cool thoroughly. Chill at least 4 hours.

To serve, cut  with a very sharp knife. 

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