November 28, 2011

Pink Rice Cup Cake

Pink rice cup cakes would always bring me back to the days when the most "happening place" in Sibu was the Tua Pek Kong Wharf where the local villagers would arrive as early as 6 in Sibu to do some buying and selling.

I would be receiving my grandmother and other relatives and in those "days of no family car" as a representative of my parents. I would accompany my grandmother and walked all the l km (only) to my home in Kampong Nyabor. The other relatives would do their shopping and selling of the rubber sheets or ducks or chickens. Grandma would stay one or two nights. (Foochows always say...stay two or three nights..never days..as the meaning would be "pass the night".)

But before doing so my relatives would have a Foochow breakfast at Moi Suong Coffee Shop as a treat for themselves and especially for my grandma. A bowl of bian niik would be a must for her. However if she wanted fish balls we would have to go to another coffee shop called Lok Tien Yuen or Garden of Heavenly Happiness. I love that name...

And one of the tempting and sumptious cakes I would pick up would be the pink rice cup cake or Huat Koh..or Fatt Koh. As a child the pink colour was attractive and I would choose it for its sweet taste too. I would eat it instead of a hard boiled egg or a Toast with Butter from the charcoal stove. I must have developed my sweet tooth from this cake!! Indeed most Foochow cakes are more savoury than sweet.

The beauty of this cake is the cracked top which is actually the scientific result of rice flour mixed with the right proportion of raising agent and the correct steaming temperature. Its special text is a honest proportion of the ingredients. Any cheating would cause the cake to be sticky and lumpy......My grandmother used to say you can even tell the character of the maker from the Huat Koh...Do you agree?

Today the Fatt Koh is smaller and is in a paper cup...To some people it is very easy to make. But to be honest..making a good fatt koh is an honest thing to do...One must never cheat with the ingredients because by doing so the quality of the Merng Goh (Fatt Koh) would deterioriate and there is no Fatt ( or merng) in the cake.....

Many people try to use Eno or 7 up or baking soda and so many other ingredients to make it puff up or double its size...but there is a trick in using traditional raising agent...and the cake will not be sticky or lumpy...I hope I can catch the traditional recipe soon. I often wonder how our ancestors knew so much science to make the cake rise so well....

These Fatt Koh come in pink and white ...and they really look lovely on a marble table inside the traditional Foochow marble table "food glass case which has a lid that opens upwards ". Eating one every now and then would take me back 50 years to the early and honest days of my Foochow people in Sibu....

P/s I would like to have a photo of the traditional glass case for kuih on marble tables in coffee shop. Any one knows what I am hankering for? Even better I would like to buy one....

17 comments:

Anonymous said...

my fren,try eating Fatt koh together with Yau char kuei - meaning take 1 bite of Fatt koh and then next bite a freshly fried Yau char kuei. the combination is heaven -a nice cup of Kopi O a must too.
- Ah Ngao

Daniel Yiek said...

have not tasted this for decades

Sarawakiana@2 said...

Hi Ah Ngao...I wonder if I eat like that I would end up as news in Borneo Post?..You do that in Public???

Hahahaha. May be I should do that..I know a good place to do so in Miri..but the Yie Char kueh shop is a bit far from the Fatt Koh place....

Sarawakiana@2 said...

Daniel..look for good ones in Singapore and tell me. I understand there are some places in Johor you might get the authentic ones..But one never knows..have to know the maker.

wenn said...

we usually put these on the altar.

Sarawakiana@2 said...

Wenn...
Hence even the dialectic groups have differences in their cuisine regarding functions of the food prepared!!

Ann said...

Fatt Ko Gee, a must for Cantonese for all occasions.

Sarawakiana@2 said...

Ann...hahaha I am not Cantonese..and I wish to eat this every day..I would love the All Occasion Cake!! How nice!!

What's Sarah's FIL's name? Quick! hahahahaha

Life Ramblings said...

i love fatt kohs but it's not easy to find good ones these days.

sarawaklens said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
sarawaklens said...

I was never a fan of these...

Sarawakiana@2 said...

Life Ramblings..yes I understand..in Miri I can get some very nice ones from one of the ladies at the Open Market..but I rememeber always the ones sold in Sibu at the corner stall next to Louis Wong's Yu Chiong...there was this old man who sold kuih and soy bean milk from a folding table..and we would stand by the stall to drink the soy bean..it was like from an old Chinese moview..I really liked that in my young days...very nostalgic whenever I bite into a pink cup cake that is really made from rice!!

Sarawakiana@2 said...

Sarawaklens..I am sure you have your own favourite cake...

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