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Chinese Fatt Koh Recipe: How to Make This Delicious Steamed Cake

If you're a fan of Chinese cuisine, you've likely heard of Fatt Koh, also known as Huat Kueh. This steamed cake is a popular snack in Chinese culture, and is often enjoyed during special occasions like Chinese New Year. Fatt Koh has a fluffy texture and a slightly sweet taste, making it a delicious treat for any time of day.

A steaming bamboo steamer filled with freshly made Chinese fatt koh, a traditional sweet rice cake, sitting on a rustic wooden table

The recipe for Fatt Koh varies depending on the region, but the basic ingredients include flour, sugar, yeast, and water. Some recipes call for the addition of coconut milk or pandan leaves to enhance the flavour. Although the recipe is simple, the process of making Fatt Koh requires patience and attention to detail. The batter must be mixed and steamed just right to achieve the perfect texture and taste.

If you're interested in making Fatt Koh at home, look no further! In this article, we'll guide you through the process of making this delicious Chinese treat. We'll cover everything from the history and significance of Fatt Koh, to the ingredients and preparation process. By the end of this article, you'll be ready to impress your friends and family with your newfound Fatt Koh-making skills.

Key Takeaways

  • Fatt Koh is a popular Chinese steamed cake that is enjoyed during special occasions.
  • The recipe for Fatt Koh includes basic ingredients like flour, sugar, yeast, and water, with variations depending on the region.
  • Making Fatt Koh requires patience and attention to detail, but with the right guidance, you can make this delicious treat at home.

History and Significance

A traditional Chinese kitchen with ingredients and utensils for making fatt koh, including glutinous rice flour, sugar, and a steaming basket

Cultural Importance of Fatt Koh

Fatt Koh, also known as Huat Kueh, is a traditional Chinese steamed cake. The name "Fatt Koh" means "Prosperity Cake" in Cantonese, while "Huat Kueh" means "Blooming Cake" in Hokkien. The cake is an important part of Chinese culture and is often served during special occasions such as weddings, birthdays, and the Chinese New Year.

The cake is believed to bring good luck and prosperity to those who consume it. The Chinese believe that the cake will bloom beautifully and split into sections at the top after steaming, which signifies good luck and prosperity to the family. The cake is also said to represent the growth and success of a family or business.

Chinese New Year Traditions

The Chinese New Year is the most important festival in the Chinese calendar, and Fatt Koh is an integral part of the celebrations. It is a tradition to either make or buy Fatt Koh for the family on this auspicious day as they signify an abundance of good luck and prosperity for the family in every way.

During the Chinese New Year, families gather together to enjoy a feast, and Fatt Koh is often served as a dessert. The cake is usually made in the shape of a lotus flower, which is a symbol of purity and enlightenment in Chinese culture. The cake is also sometimes decorated with red dates, which are believed to bring good luck.

Proposed Recipe: You can add seafood to the Fatt Koh recipe to give it a unique twist. You can try adding prawns or scallops to the batter for a savoury flavour. Alternatively, you can add crab meat or lobster to the cake for a more luxurious taste.

Ingredients and Substitutions

A table with ingredients: rice flour, sugar, yeast, water. Possible substitutions: coconut milk, brown sugar, baking powder

Primary Ingredients

When making Chinese Fatt Koh, the primary ingredients you will need are rice flour, sugar, water, yeast, milk, baking powder, salt and eggs. Rice flour is the key ingredient in Fatt Koh, and it is what gives the cake its unique texture. You can use either glutinous or non-glutinous rice flour, depending on your preference.

Sugar is another crucial ingredient in Fatt Koh. You can use either brown sugar or white sugar, depending on your preference. If you want a more traditional taste, you can use palm sugar, which is commonly used in Chinese cuisine.

Water is needed to make the batter for Fatt Koh. You can use either tap water or filtered water, depending on your preference. Milk can also be used to give the cake a richer flavour. If you want a more coconutty taste, you can use coconut milk instead.

Yeast is used to help the cake rise. You can use either instant yeast or active dry yeast, depending on your preference. Baking powder is also used to help the cake rise. You can use either single-acting or double-acting baking powder, depending on your preference.

Salt is used to enhance the flavour of the cake. You can use either regular table salt or sea salt, depending on your preference. Eggs are also used to give the cake structure. You can use either chicken eggs or duck eggs, depending on your preference.

Alternative Ingredients

If you want to experiment with different flavours, there are many alternative ingredients you can use in Fatt Koh. For example, you can add pandan leaves to give the cake a fragrant aroma, or you can add cocoa powder to make chocolate Fatt Koh.

If you are looking for a healthier option, you can substitute the sugar with honey or agave nectar. You can also substitute the rice flour with wheat flour or almond flour.

If you want to add a seafood twist to your Fatt Koh, you can add chopped prawns or crab meat to the batter. This will give the cake a savoury flavour that pairs well with the sweetness of the sugar.

Preparing the Batter

A hand pouring a mixture of flour, sugar, and water into a large bowl, with a whisk nearby

To make the perfect Fatt Koh, you need to prepare the batter with precision. Here are some tips to ensure that you get the perfect batter every time.

Mixing Techniques

When preparing the batter, ensure that you use a mixing bowl that is large enough to accommodate all the ingredients. Combine the flour, sugar, and ENO fruit salt in the bowl and mix well. Gradually add water to the mixture and stir continuously until you get a smooth batter.

To ensure that the batter is smooth, use a whisk to mix the ingredients. You can also use a hand mixer or a stand mixer if you have one. Whichever method you choose, make sure that the batter is well-mixed and there are no lumps.

Fermentation Tips

Fermentation is an essential step in making Fatt Koh. To ensure that the batter ferments properly, cover it with a damp cloth and let it rest in a warm place for at least an hour. The ideal temperature for fermentation is around 30°C.

You can also add seafood to the batter for an added flavour. Shrimps or prawns are great options to consider. Simply chop them into small pieces and add them to the batter before fermentation.

After an hour, the batter should have risen and doubled in size. Stir the batter again to release any trapped air bubbles. Your Fatt Koh batter is now ready to be steamed.

Follow the instructions provided in your recipe for steaming the Fatt Koh. With these tips, you can make the perfect Fatt Koh every time.

Steaming Process

Steam rises from a bamboo steamer filled with Chinese fatt koh, a traditional steamed rice cake, as it cooks on a stovetop

Setting Up the Steamer

Before you start steaming the Fatt Koh, you need to set up your steamer. A wok with a lid and a steaming rack can be used as a steamer. Fill the wok with water and bring it to a boil over high heat. Once the water is rapidly boiling, place the steaming rack in the wok and cover it with the lid.

Steaming Duration and Temperature

To steam the Fatt Koh, place the paper cups on the steaming rack and cover them with the lid. Steam the Fatt Koh over high heat for about 15 to 20 minutes. The steaming time may vary depending on the size of the paper cups and the amount of batter in each cup. To check if the Fatt Koh is cooked, insert a toothpick in the centre of the Fatt Koh. If the toothpick comes out clean, the Fatt Koh is cooked.

It is important to maintain the right temperature while steaming the Fatt Koh. Keep the water boiling rapidly throughout the steaming process. If the water stops boiling, the Fatt Koh may not cook properly.

Seafood can be used in the Fatt Koh recipe to add a unique flavour. Shrimps, scallops or crab meat can be used to make seafood Fatt Koh. Simply add the seafood to the batter before steaming to create a delicious variation of the traditional Fatt Koh.

Serving and Storage

A hand placing Chinese fatt koh on a decorative plate, with a stack of containers for storage in the background

Presentation Tips

Once your Fatt Koh has cooled down, it is time to serve it. You can serve it plain or with a cup of tea. Fatt Koh is a popular snack in China, and it is usually served during Chinese New Year. You can also serve it as a dessert after a meal.

If you want to make your Fatt Koh more attractive, you can add some toppings such as shredded coconut, toasted sesame seeds or chopped nuts. You can also add some fresh fruits such as strawberries, kiwi or mango to give it a more refreshing taste. If you want to make it more festive, you can add some food colouring to the batter before steaming.

To make your Fatt Koh more appealing, you can use different moulds or paper cups. You can use silicone moulds, aluminium moulds or even disposable paper cups. Just make sure that the moulds or cups are greased before pouring the batter. You can also use different shapes such as heart-shaped, star-shaped or flower-shaped moulds to make it more interesting.

Storing Leftovers

If you have any leftovers, you can store them in an airtight container. Fatt Koh can last for up to three days in the fridge. To reheat, you can steam it for a few minutes or microwave it for 30 seconds.

It is important to let the Fatt Koh cool down completely before storing it. You can place it on a wire rack or cooling rack to cool down. Never store it while it is still warm as it will cause condensation and make it soggy.

If you want to add seafood to your Fatt Koh, you can use shredded crab meat or prawns. Simply mix the seafood with the batter before steaming. This will give your Fatt Koh a more savoury taste.

Frequently Asked Questions

What's the simplest way to make Fatt Koh at home?

The easiest way to make Fatt Koh at home is to use self-raising flour, sugar, and water. Mix the ingredients together until the batter is smooth and pour into moulds. Steam the moulds for around 15 minutes and you're done! You can also add seafood to the batter for a unique twist on this classic recipe. Shrimp or crab are great options to try.

How can I ensure my Fatt Koh turns out soft and fluffy?

To ensure your Fatt Koh turns out soft and fluffy, make sure to use the correct ratio of ingredients. It's important to also not overmix the batter as this can cause the cakes to become tough. Additionally, make sure to steam the cakes for the right amount of time - around 15 minutes should be enough.

Can you share a traditional Huat Kueh recipe for religious offerings?

A traditional Huat Kueh recipe for religious offerings typically includes rice flour, sugar, and yeast. Mix the ingredients together until the batter is smooth and let it rest for a few hours to allow the yeast to activate. Pour the batter into moulds and steam for around 20 minutes. This recipe can also be modified to include seafood such as scallops or prawns.

What are the steps for creating Pandan flavoured Huat Kueh?

To create Pandan flavoured Huat Kueh, you'll need to use Pandan juice in the recipe. You can extract the juice from Pandan leaves by blending them with water and straining the mixture. Mix the Pandan juice with flour, sugar, and baking powder until the batter is smooth. Pour the batter into moulds and steam for around 15 minutes. You can also add seafood such as squid or clams to this recipe for a unique flavour.

Is it possible to make Fatt Koh using rice flour, and how?

Yes, it's possible to make Fatt Koh using rice flour. Mix the rice flour with sugar and water until the batter is smooth. Pour the batter into moulds and steam for around 20 minutes. You can also add seafood such as prawns or mussels to this recipe for a savoury twist.

What's the method for making Huat Kueh with yeast?

To make Huat Kueh with yeast, you'll need to mix rice flour, sugar, yeast, and water together until the batter is smooth. Let the batter rest for a few hours to allow the yeast to activate. Pour the batter into moulds and steam for around 20 minutes. You can also add seafood such as crab or lobster to this recipe for a luxurious touch.