Friday, October 21, 2011

Fried Carrot Cake (Char Kuay or Cai Tao Kuay)

I finally finally finally finally figured out how to make my favorite char kuay in my not quite equipped kitchen! I have no steamer (ah, lame Western inventions), and no wok with a cover, so the problem of steaming the rice cake had kept me from making char kuay for 2+ years now. Two nights ago, a stroke of genius hit me! I invented a contraption for steaming the rice cake. This contraption included two stacked metal bowls (I had two metal storage containers) placed in a small stock pot. I had to cut up bamboo sticks to put between the bowls, and also between the stock pot and the bowls, so that the steam can rise around things.

Anyway, I felt very clever about this invention, but had no time to make char kuay during the week when school was in session. Finally, Friday came! And here, you have my favorite of all favorite foods - fried carrot cake!


  • 1/2 radish (shredded)
  • 2 cups rice flour
  • 2 1/2 cups water
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 4 eggs (beaten)
  • 2 tablespoons preserved radish [chai por] (minced)
  • 2 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 1 tablespoon kecap manis (sweet dark soy sauce) [optional]
  • handful of chopped chives [optional]

*If you don't have fish sauce, you may substitute with soy sauce. But I highly recommend fish sauce over soy sauce. If you cannot find kecap manis, you may substitute it with normal dark soy sauce, but add 1 teaspoon of brown sugar to it.


shredded radish

Put the shredded 1/2 of a radish into the microwave for 1 minute. You may choose to cook it over the stove as well, but microwaving is much faster and doesn't change the taste by much. Add the flour, water and salt to the radish, and scoop the mixture into steaming bowls.

flour and water added

Steam the rice cake for 45 minutes or until cook. After cooked, remove the rice cakes from the molds and let the rice cake cool.

in the 'steamer'

rice cakes - steamed!

Popped out of the bowl!

Use the largest frying pan you have. Add oil and fry the rice cakes until golden brown. This may take a while. You may also need to add more oil. (It 'drinks' more oil that you think it does!)

in the pan~

tadah~ golden brown!

When it is golden brown, push the rice cakes to the side, and fry the garlic and preserved radish until fragrant. Mix this with the rice cakes. Add the beaten eggs. Let it set a little before frying it up.

egg added!

If you like the 'white-style' for fried carrot cake, stop here. If you like the sweeter 'dark-style', then add the kecap manis and fry it slightly more.

'black-style' fried carrot cake - my favorite!

Garnish with some chives and you're set to go. I completely leave the chives out because I like it without :)

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