Tuesday, 31 July 2012

Best Chwee Kueh Recipe 水粿

This is a tried-and-tested recipe for Chwee Kueh.

A good Chwee Kueh is soft, light and supple in body.  The savoury chai-poh (preserved radish) topping plays an important role too.  It must be aromatic and nicely browned with the right amount of oil in it.  Those who have tried the famous Chwee Kueh at Tiong Bahru and Bedok Hawker Center, would definitely know the criterion for good Chwee Kuehs.

This recipe produces Chwee Kuehs of almost perfect consistency.  Follow the steps in this recipe diligently and you will definitely earn a thumbs-up from your family.

Chwee Kueh

Chwee Kueh (Yield 40 pieces) 


300g                  Rice Flour  粘米粉
25g                   Wheat Starch 澄面粉
25g                    Corn Flour 粟米粉
2 tsp                  Salt
2 tsp                  Cooking Oil
400ml                 Room Temperature Water
1000ml               Boiling Hot Water


  1. Mix rice flour, wheat starch, corn flour and salt with 400ml of room temperature water.
  2. Bring 1000ml of water to a boil. 
  3. Pour boiling hot water into flour mixture gradually, stirring continuously.  
  4. Add 2 tsp of cooking oil into batter and mix well.
  5. Brush a little oil onto the mould.  Pour batter into mould about 3/4 full.  Steam for about 15 - 20 minutes.
  6. Remove moulds from steamer to cool for 15 - 20 minutes before unmoulding.  


1 packet, 150g    Chai-Poh (Preserved Radish)
1 tbsp                Minced Garlic
1 tbsp                Minced Shallot
1 tbsp                Dried Shrimp, soaked & minced
1 tsp                  Toasted White Sesame
1/2 cup               Cooking Oil
2 tsp                  Light Soy Sauce
1/4 tsp               Dark Soy Sauce
2 tbsp                Sugar
1/2 tsp               Salt
1/4 tsp               Pepper


  1. Chop radish into smaller pieces using a food processor.
  2. Rinse radish under running tap water briefly.  Use your hand to squeeze out the excess water from the radish.
  3. Heat up a pan.  Toast the white sesame by frying it for about 1 minute. Remove and set aside.
  4. Use the same pan, dry fry the radish to remove excess water in it for about 2 minutes.  Remove and set aside.
  5. Heat up 1/2 cup of oil in the pan, fry dried shrimp for about a minute until fragrant.  Add in minced garlic and shallots.
  6. Add in preserved radish and mix until all oil is absorded.  Cook over low heat for about 20 minutes, stirring occassionally.
  7. Mix in seasoning and toasted sesame seeds.
  8. Allow it to cool.  Keep in a air-tight container and store in the fridge for up to 5 days or in the freezer for up to a month.  Heat up before use.

  • Ensure hot water comes to a full boil (i.e. big bubbles appear on top of the water) before mixing it with the flour mixture.  When pouring the hot water into the flour mixture, do it slowly and stir it quickly and continuously.  If not, your batter will have a lumpy glue-like texture  instead of a smooth paste. 
  • You can choose not to chop your preserved radish to save time in preparation.  However, you will notice that the chai-poh topping serves at the famous stalls is usually in smaller pieces.  I've tried both versions and find that chai-poh in smaller pieces absorbs the oil easier when cooking and hence more fragrant.      
  • To speed up the unmoulding process, I usually put the hot moulds in a tray of cold water bath for about 2 minutes.  To unmould, use a butter knife brushed with a little oil to run around the inside of the mould.  

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