Tuesday, June 16, 2009


Hell-looow I'm back. Back from reality. From real life. As opposed to the my virtual one. I apologize for the sudden, unannounced exit but it was a totally on-the-spur-of-the-moment-thing, unplanned and something that I was completely in need of. Like food and water.

I've been lungeing at the treadmill, threatening those weights, revamping my garden (if you can call it one), painting the old rattan chair a fresh, vibrant white, drinking 8 glasses of water a day, gulping down some wheat-grasss-ed smoothies and living. Just plain down to earth, real life, tangible living.

It feels good and I figured I am now deserving of getting back into my virtual world for a moment, talk to you and make a treat for my blog. So I made some kuih koci - glutinous, sticky, sweet coconut filled cones standing pointedly pretty and ready to be bitten into....It's sticky, sweet without being overly so, stretchy and just so pointedly good!

For those of you who know not yet a combination of glutinous rice flour and coconut cream makes an amazingly giving and very obliging dough. Lacking the gluten present in wheat flour, there is no worry about over-mixing, over-kneading, of it cracking when shaping or even of it drying out. I had a blast handling this dough and it reminded me of a very white, fat and absolutely lazy cat who would allow you to twist, turn, bend, cuddle, squeeze, shape or press its soft plump body any which way you want without as much as a whimper or a threat. That was how it felt. Just so indulgent, gracious and agreeable.

The filling for the kuih koci (pronounced ko-weh ko-chi) was some coarsely shredded coconut sweetened with a thick palm sugar syrup and cajoled into a moist, dark, damp and scrummy mound; a very popular filling for Asian cakes and desserts.

And thank god for banana leaves too..... because it allows me to make my cakes in any form I fancy. And since I was in the mood for cones, cones it was. Love those pointed tips.

Here's the recipe...............

Prepare the banana leaves :

Wipe clean on both sides, cut into rectangular pieces about 6 by 4 inches and wilt the banana leaves over a fire on your stove or in the oven at a low temperature. Swipe them with some cooing oil before wrapping the glutinous rice cones.Check here on how to prepare banana leaves for wrapping.

The filling :

1 to 1 1/2 cups fresh shredded coconut
100 gm palm sugar, broken into pieces
1 tbsp regular white sugar or to taste
a pinch of salt

Place the palm sugar, white sugar, salt and 1 or 2 tablespoons of water ina small pot over small heat. When the palm sugar has dissolved pour in the shredded coconut. Mix well until teh coconut is veenly coated witht eh sugar and is a dark rich brown.

The dough :

2 cups glutinous rice flour
2 tbsp castor sugar
1 tbsp vegetable oil
pinch of salt
1 cup (250 ml) coconut cream

Place the dry ingredients in a medium bowl and mix. Add the liquid ingredients and combine with a spatula first and then as the mixture begins to get lumpy use your hands to form into a smooth and soft dough. It may seem dry at first but rest assured that there is more than enough moisture to bind the dough together into a soft lovely mass.

Divide the dough into 12 pieces. Roll 1 piece into a ball and then flatten into a disc. Place the coconut filling in the centre of the disc, cover up and seal. You may at this point shape it inot a rough cone first.

Get a piece of wilted banana leaf and roll it into a cone shape like you would a piece of paper for piping icing. Place the filled dough snugly into the banana leaf cone, fold down the excess at the top firmly and tightly and place the filled cone flat down on its base. Do the same for the rest of the dough and filling.

I understand that one could staple the banana leaf into place to ensure that it doesn't open up during the steaming process but I haven't figured out how that could ever be done. An easier way of wrapping these little dumplings would be to place the filled ball of dough onto the rectangular banana leaf, fold over the top and bottom ends over the dough snugly and then fold the left and rights ends under and place them folded ends down flat on a plate until they are ready to be steamed.

If all this sounds too complicated to you, believe me, it's not. It sounds more complicated than it is. A little experimenting and common sense will work just fine.

Set a steamer ready at a rolling boil and steam those little babies for 15 to 20 minutes. Serve wrapped in the banana leaves. YUMMMMMMMM


ninitalk said...

You've made the humble kuih koci sound like nectar for the gods!

zurin said...

I'm no god but the kuih koci is certainly nectar for me. Love it!:)

Divina Pe said...

This is another dessert worth trying. I'm trying to imagine how you wrap it.

zurin said...

Divina, please click on the 'here'word in the post n youll see some photos on making a cone frm the banana leaves. :) if u need somemore help just yell.

Anonymous said...

I am so glad I found your blog. I stumbled on your blog when I found your roti canai recipe. You are sooooooooooooo good in cooking & baking. I have miss kuih koci so much & wanted to try to make it since I live in a small "kampung-ville" here in the states. I cannot find banana leaves here. Believe me, I have tried & tried & tried. So, I was wondering if you know what else can I use to wrap the dough? Very geram especially when banana leave is what is stopping me from trying to make this kuih. Appreciate your reply.


zurin said...

Hi sneezy, :)tq.... how about trying wrapping with foil? You could just make a little squarish bundle instead of a cone for simplicity. I think it would work. do try n let me know how it turns out k.


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