Friday, October 1, 2010

Teochew Peach-Shaped Dumplings (Puen Kueh / Peng Kueh)

Is it just me or is the year swooshing by real fast? It's already the start of October now and soon enough we will be talking about Christmas and New Year! And since this is the final exam month, parents and kids will be pretty busy. I guess as a parent, we usually try our best to physically or mentally support our kids to skid though these tough weeks. Whether you seat down and do revision with them or just giving them encouragement all the way, I am sure they will appreciate it. One of the things I like to do during this time is to make more comfort food, it delights the kids and fills the tummy too. So I finally get to work on this family favorite kueh. It's Puen Kueh, traditionally a Teochew kueh that is usually shaped like a peach and colored in pink. It's usually stuffed with glutinous rice, dried shrimp, mushrooms and boiled peanuts, yum!
I am sure many of you have seen and also eaten this kueh before. It's very fragrant and the chewy texture from the skin and glutinous rice is very satisfying. ;) Believe it or not, I actually plan to make this kueh for a good 3 months and finally got the chance to make it last week. ;) From finding the perfect recipe to getting the mould and ingredients, then finally the time to make it! So you can imagine how happy I am when I finally bite into one of these babies, lol!

Recipe Adapted from "Delightful Snacks & Dim Sum' by Agnes Chang
Ingredients for Puen Kueh (makes 22-25):

Ingredients for filling
550 g glutinous rice, soaked overnight and drained

3 tbsp fried shallot oil
1 tsp chicken powder

8 shallots, peeled and chopped
100 g dried prawns, soaked, drained and roughly chopped

8-10 dried mushrooms, soaked, drained and diced

70g peanuts, soaked and boiled with a touch of salt or used canned ones is fine

2 tsp sugar
1 tbsp light soy sauce
1/2 tsp salt

Ingredients for Skin
550 g rice flour
120 g tapioca flour
1 tsp salt

1 tsp sugar

760 ml boiling water

3 tbsp fried shallot oil or cooking oil

1/4 tsp of red food colouring gel

Method For Filling:
  • Prepare the steamer over medium fire. Then steam the pre soaked glutinous rice with a knotted pandan leaf (optional). Steam for a good 40-45 mins. Note that I added about 100 ml of water into the rice to steam together. And continue to drizzle 25 ml water over the rice every 10 minutes. This ensures the rice to cook more evenly. Make sure you give it a taste test before stopping the fire.
  • Now we prepare the other ingredients for the filling. In a wok, add 3 tbsp cooking oil over medium low fire. Add in chopped shallots, cook till slightly brown and aromatic. Add mushrooms and roughly chopped dried shrimp. When the whole mixture is aromatic, add in the steamed rice and seasoning. Give it a good toss to make sure everything is well combined.
  • Lastly add in the peanuts. I add them last because I didn't want them squished when tossing. 
  • Once everything is uniformly mixed in. Set the filling aside and prepare your kueh skin.
Method for Dough Skin
  • I usually use the stand mixer to do the kueh dough mixing. As there is usually boiling water involve and needs to be rapidly combined, the mixer will do a better job then a spatular or hand. It's too hot!
  • So in a large mixing bowl, add in both flours, sugar and salt, give it a quick mix to combine. Then get ready your boiling water while the mixing blade is still turning at its lowest speed. Ever so carefully drizzle in the hot water in while the mixer is on, don't pour all at a go! The dough will slowly come together. Once all the hot water has been added, add in the 3 tbsp of oil and the food colouring. Continue to mix till the dough becomes one inform pink shade. You might need to scoop the dough around to get it to mix well since it is kind of sticky. But don't worry, it will be less sticky when it cools down a little.
  • Cover the skin dough with a moist towel and proceed to set up your wrapping area. You will need extra oil to grease the mould and the steaming plate where you place the kuehs. Have your steamer ready on medium low while you are wrapping.
  • I can't really give you the amount of dough skin you need to wrap one kueh, as I myself got it through trial and error. You can start off using 50-60g, gradually add or remove as you need. 
  • Flatten the dough skin to 1/4cm thickness. then spoon about 2 tbsp of glutinous rice filling in the middle. Carefully wrap up and seal any openings. Place it in the greased puen kueh mould and press gently to let it take the mould's shape. Knock on the edge to release the kueh out. Repeat till all the skin or filling is used up.
  • Steam the kuehs for 10-15 minutes. You are essentially steaming to cook the skin only since the filling was already pre-cooked. Repeat till all the kuehs are steamed. Brush a little cooking oil or shallot oil on the surface of the steamed kueh to prevent it from sticking.
I have been using this old school mould for years. It only costed me $2? It's not a fancy mould but it has been doing it's job well. 

The result was quite satisfactory. :) The texture of the skin was just right and the flavour of filling was good too.When it was freshly steamed, my kids and I happily enjoyed a couple of them together, just plain with no sweet sauce or chili. Yup, it's that good ok, haha.

I tinted the skin dough to pink so as to take on the traditional Peng kueh look.  If you opt not to add any food colouring, be prepared to have white puen kueh!

I have made this recipe for countless times and passed it to many of my friends and family to try. Most of them have enjoyed it very much. It's an old school treat that will always bring back fond memories of childhood! I am glad I am creating it for my kids now. :)

2 days after I made these Puen Kueh, I cut the remaining pieces and fried them up. All crispy and golden....super yum! ;D As expected, my kids love this more then the steam version....including my hubby of course. Even when we buy these peng kueh from stalls outside, we usually pan fried them till  all crunchy on the outside before eating them. Yes its better fried....most of the time. :P 

Guess I will have to be making this again pretty soon. Thanks for reading!


Bakertan said...

hey Bee Bee,

I love eating these. You are good at making kueh, always make me salivate. Can open a stall and sell these along with your soon kueh liao. I will be the first to buy from you =]

Cooking Gallery said...

I only know the sweet version of this kueh, but I think I would even prefer the savoury ones better...! Yours looks very pretty!

Mary @Delightful Bitefuls said...

These sound great! I've never made anything like the before!

Great blog; happy I found you!

Mary xo
Delightful Bitefuls

LimeCake said...

wow your kueh looks incredible! very professional!

Kitchen Corner said...

Bee, you are the Queen of Kueh! You can make many types of kueh and there all looks nice and yummy! I still miss your kueh which we had at Edith's place. Miss it so muchhhhhh!!

Edith said...

Bee, my mother in law always buy these. She loves to pan fried them to crispy stage. I tried once and it failed miserably. Thanks for sharing your recipe. Will make it once exam fever over.

BTW, I had these with yam fillings and it was good. You know about this?

Pei-Lin said...

Bee Bee, I don't think I've tried this kuih ... though I'm, technically speaking, half-Teochew. I think my Teochew mom has mentioned about these to me, but I didn't pay attention to her. LOL! Haiz ...

I've gotta say, though, this kuih sounds like an uber filling one! Goodness! Oh yea, your pan-fried ones using "stale" kuih reminds me so much of my family's way of eating ang koo kuih too! We pan-fried ang koo kuih! =D

Have a nice week, buddy! Been missing you all! Hope to see all of you again in the future ... which I've got no clue when it'll be ...

WendyinKK said...

I eaten some that looked like this, but filled with chinese chives.

Bakericious said...

Bee, I am planning to make this as well but has been sitting on it, never make kuih b4 leh so 怕怕 heeheehee... Looks very delicious, Queen of Kuih :).

Angie's Recipes said...

Cool! I thought all the Kueh must be made with sweet potatoes.

Sonia ~ Nasi Lemak Lover said...

actually i have not tried this traditional puen kueh before, wish i can try out one day.

Shirley @ Kokken69 said...

Bee, your Puen Kueh looks so soft! I trust your recipe because I ate your Soon Kueh at the party... Hey, I will be looking out for your Soon Kueh recipe. hmm...but I don't have a Puen Kueh mold - I think I will just use my moon cake mold!

Honey Bee Sweets said...

Thanks ZY! Hahaha, I am sure you can make this yourself too. ;) Just follow recipe. No need to buy from me, let me know larr, I can make a few for exchange for your nutella cake, lol!

Hi Cooking Gallery,
Actually this kueh is more common in Singapore. When I was in KL, I didn't even see it any where! So you not in Spore?

Hi Mary! Welcome to my blog! You should try it and you will like it! ;) Thanks for the lovely note and hope to see you again. ;)

Honey Bee Sweets said...

Thanks Limecake. ;) I try my best...

Hahaha, Grace, you made me feel very bad leh. Okay, I promise I will make the kueh for you again when we meet yah?

Hi Edith,
Oh no, haven't tried the Yam version one before. You mean chunks of yam inside? Or the whole thing is filled with sweet yam paste? Anyway, thanks for the tip, will check it out and see. ;)

Honey Bee Sweets said...

Pei-Lin my friend, we all miss you very much too. :) Hope your birthday was a swell one.
Actually, I think this kueh is kind of invented by Singaporean Teochews, heehee. I was saying earlier, I did not see these during the 3 years while I was in KL! Anyway, if you ever come again, will make many for you to try ok?

Hi Wendy,
I believe you are talking about chives kueh, not the same thing. Again, this is very Singaporean, so that's why some of you don't know the existence of this Puen Kueh. ;)

Honey Bee Sweets said...

Hey Jess, I no Queen of Kueh larr... I more like a BIG fan of kuehs, lol! I love kuehs! I think I love all good food, hahaha! I sometimes feel these kuehs are so traditional, should learn them before it is lost in history.;P Hey, no scared larr, quick go make, it's yummy!!!

@Angie: Oh no, not all kuehs are made with sweet potatoes. In fact the only kueh that is made with sweet potato that I know of is Oneh Oneh. :)

Sonia, this is a kueh invented by Singaporeans, so it'll be pretty hard to find this in Malaysia. But try making it, you will like it. ;)

Honey Bee Sweets said...

Thanks Shirley! Hahaha, thanks for trusting me. ;) The mould very cheap only, I got mine for S$1.50, no need to use your mooncake mould, lol! ;) Let me know how you like it.

Passionate About Baking said...

Woah! Your skills at "kueh" also damned good leh! I missed your ang ku kueh...then the mang kwang kueh... Will I get a chance to eat your peng kueh? *greedy* Btw, I also love pan fried peng kueh. It simply taste so good...and homemade some more! Yummy!

lena said...

hi, this looks good. I dont think i have eaten this before.I've seen this in one of my books too but never thought of making it partly because i do not have this mould.
and thanks for letting us know that it can be pan fried too, never thought of that!

Jo said...

I love eating this, especially with lots of peanuts in it. Agree with Bakertan, you can definitely open a stall already. Haha, I too will buy from you.

pigpigscorner said...

So pretty! Love the shape and the colour. hmm but I don't remember having this.

Honey Bee Sweets said...

@Jane: Thank you thank you. ;) I guess all this passion for kueh is mainly because I have been away from home land too long. :P Keep thinking that if I don't learn to make it, might loss the tradition in the future. So if I relocate back to California next time, at least I carry all these knowledge back with me. You want? Sure next gathering lah!

@Lena: if you are either Singaporean or Resident here, should know about. I guess it's good that I am introducing a new kueh to everyone. :) try it Lena, you will like it.

Honey Bee Sweets said...

Thanks so much Jo! Looks like I should seriously consider opening business since with the support of my blogger friends, lol!

@pigpigscorner: thanks Ann. It's a traditional Teochew savory kueh believed to be created in Singapore. It's quite popular in Singapore, so if u ever come to Singapore, remember to give it a try. ;)

Von said...

Yeah- time flies too quickly!! My mum makes me heaps of food during exam time too! haha...which is why I always end up a lot fatter afterwards- no exercise and lots of sweets aren't exactly a health combination! haha.... These look delicious! I've never had kueh before- I'll have to try making it one day!! And the fried ones look so good too!

emy said...

Thanks for sharing!

I have been missing these kueh for the longest time!

ReeseKitchen said...

WOW!! Lovely kueh! I've seen these before but yet trying. I mean I've not try eating too..;p It must be very delicious, I can imagine from your photos here. Very nice..:)

Anonymous said...

seems like u can make ANYTHING! ur "pen" kueh looks perfect!

Honey Bee Sweets said...

Thanks for dropping by Von. All the best to your exam if you are still in the middle of it. Hope you will get to make this puen kueh, it's quite a satisfying and comforting food. :)

Emy, let me know how yours turn out when you make them.

Thanks Reese. This puen kueh is pretty good, so try it out when you have a chance yah.

Crustybake, welcome to my blog! No lah, I am still learning along the way. But so glad that I finally know how to make this puen kueh. :)

tigerfish said...

Pan-frying the kueh the next day is usually what is done in my family :)

Teresa said...

Hi Bee Bee, I just happened to find your blog and saw the puen kueh u made. It looks delicious and I have always being a fan of it as I am a teochew..... Where did u buy the mould from?

Honey Bee Sweets said...

Hi Teresa (a.k.a. baking Mum) , ;) I bought the mould in store in Jurong Point. I cant really remember the name of the store, but it sells all sorts of home necessity stuff, I.e. pots, plastic bags, brooms etc. Sorry, it's been a year + since I bought it...didn't get to use it until late last yr. Hope you'll find it. ;)

Unknown said...

I made the dough skin according to the recipe but it turned out too soft and sticky which is not pliable. Can u tell me what went wrong? I even tried adding more rice flour but it is still the same. Can u help? I'm left hanging halfway as I've finish doing the ingredients. Thanks

Memorable Moments said...

Hi, i also facing the same problem as kathy saw. The dough is too sticky. Btw is tapioca starch flour n tapioca flour the same?

Honey Bee Sweets said...

Hi Memorable Moments, I used tapioca flour not starch. Perhaps that's the reason why your dough is sticky? I can't really deduce what went wrong since I really made this exact same recipe from Agnes Chang's book and it turned out exactly what's in the photo. Perhaps this time you can add less water? But I seriously doubt there's anything wrong with the recipe especially I made it 3 times and it turned out fine.