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Thursday, January 19, 2017

Turnip cake / pudding aka Loh bak goh


It's nearly that time of the year again ! 

I really need to start my spring cleaning .......


Chinese around the world are busy preparing for their most important festival , the Chinese New Year which will start on January 28th . Mention Chinese New Year and what immediately comes to mind is food ! Okay , lai-see packets as well lol 

Many foods consumed during Chinese New Year are symbolic . Loh bak goh , Cantonese for steamed turnip cake or pudding is an auspicious food which symbolizes good fortune , a must-have in most Cantonese households during this festival . Basically made with grated radish / turnip , rice flour and Chinese sausages , mixture is steamed then serve pan-fried .


Making this yum cha staple is pretty easy but grating the radish takes patience .  As I love to eat it during the winter season , grating more than a kilo of turnip / radish is like a walk in the park or library to me hee hee ! 

If you want to try it , make the half recipe I listed below , you can adjust the seasoning according to preference . The trick to make it easy to unmould the cake / pudding especially if you using an aluminium cake pan is to grease it generously with oil , if using a 6-inch pan , use about 2 teaspoons of oil .

I fried the steamed cake/ pudding 2 ways - the first one is the usual way , cut into squares and pan-fried both sides until golden brown . The other version is to cut the cake into small cubes , pan-fried until brown and crispy then XO sauce is added . XO sauce is a condiment made from dried seafoods like scallops , shrimps and fish and usually use for stir fry dishes .


Recipe adapted from 必學的中西節日美食 = Festive delicacies / [黎楊惠玲作].
黎楊惠玲

Grease one 22-cm square tin ( with 2-inch height ) or two 20 x 10-cm loaf tins or one 22-cm round tin ( with 3-inch height ) or two 15-cm round tins

1.2 kg turnip / radish
3 ( 120 grams )  Chinese sausages
30 grams dried shrimps
5 dried mushrooms
1 tablespoon ginger juice ( squeezed from about 40 grams grated fresh ginger )
1 tablespoon Chinese wine
300 grams rice flour
40 grams wheat flour
800 ml water ( including juice from drained grated turnip ) divided

Seasoning : 

3 teaspoons sugar
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon sesame oil
1/4 teaspoon ground white pepper

Garnishes :

1 stalk coriander
1 stalk spring onion
1 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds

* Soak dried shrimps and dried mushrooms until soft , cut into small dices . Rinse and steam Chinese sausages over high heat for 5 minutes , let cool down a bit before cutting into small dices . Wash and dice spring onions and coriander .

* Wash , peel and grate turnip . Strain the juice and add water to make 400 ml , set aside .

* Sift rice flour and wheat flour in a mixing bowl and add in 400 ml water , mix until batter is lump-free and smooth .

* In a large pan , heat 1 tbsp oil , stir-fry diced sausages , mushrooms and shrimps . Transfer sausage mixture into the bowl with batter , stir to combine , set aside .

* In the same pan , add in the drained turnip and pour in the 400 ml turnip juice mixture , add in seasoning and cook , covered , for 5 to 8 minutes . Add in ginger juice and wine , mix well to combine , pour in the batter , mix and adjust taste , keep stirring until mixture thickens .

* Pour in the batter mixture into the greased tin(s) , smooth the top . Steam over high heat for 30-40 minutes . Take out from the wok and let cool down to room temperature ( it'll take several hours )  , ran a small knife gently around the sides of the pan and unmould the cake . Transfer into a serving plate , top with diced spring onions and coriander , sprinkle with sesame seeds . Cool turnip cake until firm .

* Cut into slices , pan-fry both sides until golden brown . Serve hot with chilli sauce or hoisin sauce .

* For fried turnip with XO sauce : Cut loh bak goh into 2 to 3-cm cubes , fry pieces until golden brown and the surface is crispy . Wipe off excess oil and add in 1 tbsp XO ( adjust amount according to preference and quantity of the pudding ) stir until pieces are evenly coated , add in some diced spring onion . Dish up and garnish with more diced spring onion and sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds . Serve hot .

My half recipe : Makes one 6 x ( about ) 3-inch steamed cake 

588 grams ( peeled weight ) white turnip / radish
2 Chinese sausage
3 dried mushrooms
15 grams dried shrimps
2 teaspoons ginger juice
1 teaspoon Chinese wine
400 ml water ( radish juice included )
150 grams rice flour
20 grams wheat flour

Seasoning : 2 tsps raw sugar , 1/2 tsp sea salt , 1/2 tsp chicken powder , 1/2 tsp sesame oil and a generous dash of ground white pepper





3 comments :

  1. Anne, this could have been the prettiest turnip cake I have ever seen. Wish I could taste some of yours...

    ReplyDelete
  2. I'm thinking this is the first turnip cake I've seen a recipe for! This combination of ingredients sounds so flavorful and tasty. And if it brings me good luck, all the better!!!

    ReplyDelete
  3. it was interesting to read what in this part of the World is your tradition!

    ReplyDelete