Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Soon Kueh

After successfully making chwee kueh over the weekend, it seemed appropriate to try my hand at making soon kueh as well. How difficult can it be? Well, I realised that it needed lots of time and patience to be able to roll these little dumplings out, which, I did not have. 

There a few steps to making these dumplings.  First, the ingredients for the filling need to be prepared.  That involved shredding the turnip and carrot (by hand) into juliennes or little matchsticks, then cutting them again into shorter strips. These are then stir-fried with pork mince and mushrooms, and then left to cool. This was the easy part.

Next comes the dough, which is made up of rice flour, tapioca starch, boiling hot water and oil. These are combined to form a soft dough, a bit like mushy sticky rice. The trick is then to roll these out into thin flat rounds, fill them with the turnip mixture and seal them without breaking them. And then these are transferred to a greased pan and steamed for 10 minutes.  My pan could only take 3 to 4 pieces at a time, and my batch yielded 17 (I threw away one which fell apart during the wrapping process). The next tricky part was removing the cooked dumplings from the pan without tearing the skin. Getting around this problem involved brushing lots of oil onto anything that came into contact with the dumplings. Otherwise, I'd find myself in a real sticky situation.

The dumplings came out fine, looking close enough to the real thing. The earlier batches were better though as I rolled out the dough thinner. That was before little J woke up and I had to speed things up a little after that. But hey, now I know how soon kueh is made, and it's actually not that hard. All you really need is time and patience (and don't do it on a hungry stomach).

The prepared filling for the dumplings - diced turnip, carrots, mushrooms and pork mince.

Dumplings fresh out of the steamer

Soon Kueh served with ABC chilli sauce, crispy prawn chilli and drizzled with some kecap manis. YUM!