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Fried Chinese pumpkin cake

Chinese pumpkin cake is something my mother made very regularly, to the point of excess. It’s one of those things that you can’t just make a little bit of. My mother used to tell me stories of how she would have to shred the pumpkin to make this cake (she calls it ‘kuey’). Nowadays she says she uses a stick blender and it is just so much easier.

Serves 12 as a side (approx. 305 calories per serve)

Prep time 6 hours
Cook time 1 hour

500g rice flour
400ml water
5 tbsp canola oil
1/2 butternut pumpkin, sliced
500g pork tenderloin, chopped
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp chicken powder
20g dried prawn powder
1/2 tsp Chinese five spice powder
1/4 tsp pepper
25g fried onion
Spring onion, for garnish
Chilli sauce, to serve

Note: I used a basic stick blender like this and steamed it in a 1 x 28cm cake pan. You can steam it any size cake pan you like. I have a set like this.

Mix the rice flour with 400ml water and 2 tbsp of canola oil. Let this doughy mixture rest for approximately 4 hours. My mom says that it takes the ‘rice flour’ smell out of it the longer you leave it.

Boil the pumpkin in some water and drain (reserving the excess pumpkin water in a separate bowl) before blending with a stick blender. My mom says that slicing the pumpkin makes it cook much faster.

Put the pork tenderloin in a pot and cover with water and add the salt and chicken powder. Bring to the boil and let it simmer for approximately 40 minutes. Remove the cooked pork tenderloin and dice into 1/2cm pieces and reserve the pork stock.

Heat up 3 tbsp of canola oil in a large pan. Then add the dried prawn and stir until fragrant. Then add the cooked pork, Chinese five spice powder, pepper and fried onion and stir until mixed.

Gradually mix together the rice flour, pumpkin and approximately 350-400ml of the pork stock into a large bowl. If there isn’t enough pork stock, top up with the reserved pumpkin water.

Add the cooked pork mixture to the rest of the flour mixture. Pour into a 28cm cake pan and steam for 1 hour.

Let it cool before slicing up and frying. Garnish with spring onion and serve with chilli sauce.


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