Friday, June 20, 2008

Kuih Kasui

It's been a long time since I last put up a recipe. It's not that I have not been cooking - I have been cooking quite a bit lately - but it's because of the orders I get.

Yes, I have been doing some catering (with a friend) lately and have been taking orders too for my baking!

How exciting is that? :)

Well, very, very exciting - for me, at least.

Due to the nature of the business, I am more inclined to cook more Malaysian flavours nowadays - my friend is an expert in Beriyani Johor so I guess that is our speciality at the mo, but we also cook all sorts of stuff so anyone out there who may be interested in our catering, big or small, feel free to contact me via this blog or email!

That's my bit of advertising done.

I know that some people may think that one shouldn't share recipes if one is in the food business but I believe that all beneficial knowledge should be shared and spread around...after all, all this knowledge is from Allah and it won't be any use to any of us in the hereafter right? On the contrary, lagi banyak dapat pahala if we share our knowledge together, I think... :)

So here's my Kuih Kasui recipe for you to try.

The recipe originally came from an aunt who is a connoisseur of malay foods but I have tinkered with it a little as her recipe was not exact , as normally old recipes are and I think the result is pretty good.

The trick for the kasui is to make sure the batter is not thick AT ALL. Otherwise the kuih will be pretty hard and tak sedap.

Here's the recipe:

1.5 cups plain flour
1.5 cups rice flour
0.5 cup tapioca flour/ tepung sagu
0.25 cup sugar
2.5 cups water
1 Tbs lye water/ air kapur/ alkaline water

*1 cup brown sugar/ gula melaka
*2 cups water

Boil * until dissolved and leave to cool.

In a medium size bowl, mix all the other ingredients, blend well (in a blender or just use a whisk, which I did). Add the cooled sugar mixture, mix well and sieve into another bowl. Let rest for half an hour.

Heat up the steamer. Make sure your apam moulds are oiled lightly before pouring the batter into them so that the kuih will be easy to take out. Pour the batter into the moulds using a measuring cup - it's easier that way. Cook for about 20-25 minutes.

If you use a tin, you have to wait for the kasui to cool before cutting it I think. But if the mould is used, you can straight away use a knife/ spoon to scoop it out really, without ruining the kuih much.

Don't forget the coconut on top. That should be steamed too for about 10-15 minutes (to make it last longer) with a little bit of salt. If you use dessicated coconut, steaming is a very good way to soften the coconut bits and transform it into something similar to freshly grated coconut.

Good luck!

Friday, June 06, 2008

One more thing I bought..

Got these books too at that car boot sale where we bought Zoyot (see entry below). Bought the whole lot for £5, which makes each one about 20p.

They're a collection of Enid Blyton's Secret Seven and Famous Five books - not the complete set but I think they were a bargain indeed - considering they were the early editions and they are in pretty good condition!

I would have been in absolute ecstasy if I were to be given these a few decades ago. But at my age, I still had a wide grin on my face when I bagged these books off the seller.

Now, I'm hoping to transfer some of my happiness to Big H - he is slowly beginning to read the first of the Secret Seven books, albeit with a pencil and a paper beside him to write those words he could not understand...

Monday, June 02, 2008

Dearest Yoyot...

Yoyot during one of his surgeries.

For those of you who know my family or myself in person, you may know about Big H's cuddly toy, Yoyot (named after a doll (Yoyotte) in the lovely French film 'Ponette').

Yoyot has been with us since Big H's first birthday when I gave him the cuddly toy monkey as a birthday present. I myself fell in love with the monkey when I first saw it at Toys 'R' Us at Mid Valley nearly 7 years ago hence the reason why I bought it for Big H.

Little did I know that Big H would be so attached to it that he can't go to sleep without his Yoyot - even now!

So Yoyot, from the fluffy and cuddly soft toy that he was, is now a limp and sickly looking monkey which has undergone a few 'surgeries' on my operating table when I mended a torn tail or arm or fixed a 'dislocated' filling due to too many times in the washing machine and due to being thrown here and there, pulled, grabbed and jumped on - as young boys normally play with their toys, no matter how much they love them.

Some parents may be concerned about their kids being too attached to a certain item e.g. a blanket, a doll, a pillow but I am not really worried about his attachment to Yoyot as he actually has slept without Yoyot before when we went for trips and sleepovers - to me it's not a big deal, he will grow out of it in his own time and that little monkey won't last for too long now anyway...

Yoyot and his new found brother Zoyot.

But yesterday when we went to a car boot sale at Chigwell, guess what we found? An exact replica of Yoyot, only a slightly darker colour and it appeared to be unused and brand new!

The man sold it to us for £1.50, from £2. I bought it because it was such a find - I actually did try to buy another 'Yoyot' a few years ago because his condition was getting worse and worse even then and I tak sampai hati nak buang without a replacement at that time - but I couldn't find the exact same one.

We did look around at quite a few places back in Malaysia so imagine my surprise when I found it sold in a car boot sale here in the UK!

As soon as I bought it though, I thought...perhaps I shouldn't have bought it after all...what if Big H is going to cuddle to sleep the new one now as an alternative or replacement for his old Yoyot? That will mean he will sleep with that new monkey for a few more years yet because it's still in very good condition!

But as I have found out, I really have nothing to fear, really.

Yoyot is Yoyot and nothing else can replace it, even another monkey that looks exactly the same!

From what I saw from yesterday and today, Big H doesn't really care for the new monkey - only Little H keeps on cuddling it, and if I know Little H, he's just doing it to be funny - that little one's interests range more from Legos to guns and robots so I'm not too worried about him cuddling the monkey for a few days.

Since the new monkey is now owned by Little H, I asked him what he wanted to name his new cuddly toy. He said;

"I know!"

"What?" I had asked.

"Let me whisper it to you..." - recently he has taken up this new 'thing' of whispering his thoughts to Mr S's or my ears.

"Ok..." I had said, bending low so that he could reach my ear.

"I want to name him 'Monkey'..!"


We ended up with the name Zoyot, which Mr S suggested and Little H quickly agreed upon. (Mr S first suggested Boyot for 'brown yoyot' but Little H didn't like it so much so he suggested the former pulak..)

Even though I think Zoyot won't be a long term fixture in Little H's life - I'm certainly going to take care of Zoyot as a reminder of how dear Yoyot used to be. He used to be so shiny, soft and cuddly and in fact, he was taller than Big H when we first bought him! I think I mostly wanted to buy Zoyot for myself, a part of my own memories of my first born in his growing years.

Below are some old pics of Big H with Yoyot in various times and locations...:)

The boys melanyak my bed.

Just waking up from sleep..

With a family friend.

During a trip to Melaka.

On Ateh's sofa.