Malaysian Desserts

Bubur Pulut Hitam (Black Rice Dessert)

Yield: 4 servings/ Preparation: 15 minutes/ Cooking: 1 hour


  • 240 g Black glutinous rice (washed & drained)
  • 60 g White glutinous rice (pulut) (washed & drained)
  • 7 c Water
  • 2 Pandan leaves, knotted
  • 1/2 c Sugar
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1/2 T Tapioca flour or cornflour Combined with 2 Tbs water to Form a paste
  • 1/2 c Thick cocnut milk
  • Pinch of salt


Put rice in pot with water and pandan leaves and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low, remove pandan leaves and simmer for 45 minutes until liquid is thick. Add sugar and simmer for 10 minutes. Add salt and thickening. Remove from heat.

Serve in small bowls topped with 1-2 tablespoons thick cocnut milk.

Coconut Sweet Potato Cake (Getuk Lindri)


  • 2 lbs. cassava
  • 200 gram granulated sugar
  • tsp. vanila
  • 1 cup steamed fresh-grated coconut, mixed with 1 tsp. salt
  • 100 cc water
  • food color


Put in sugar and vanila in a large stockpot with water and bring it to a boil.

Steam cassava until soft. Peel cassava. Mash cassava while still hot and pour the water mixture and food color (what ever color you like) and blend well.

Use the equipment as shown on the left hand side to mold the mixture. Then put them onto a serving platter, and sprinkle with grated coconut.

Serve at room temperature, or refrigerate for an hour and serve chilled.

Makes 10-12 servings.

Kue Mangkok (Cup Cakes)


  • 350 grams rice flour
  • some water
  • 150 grams all purpose flour
  • 200 grams fermented cassava / tapioca (tape singkong)
  • 400 grams sugar
  • 200 cc warm water
  • 2 Tsp baking soda
  • 250 cc club soda
  • 1 Tsp vanilla
  • food coloring (your choice of 3 or 4 colors)
  • salt to taste


Add enough water to the rice flour so that its weight increases to 500 grams.

Add the all purpose flour to the rice flour mixture and stir well. Add the fermented tapioca and sugar. Mix well. Add the warm water and work the dough for about 10 minutes.-Add the baking soda, the club soda and vanilla. Mix until everything is evenly distributed. Finally, add the food coloring and blend until smooth.

Warm the cup molds for about 5 minutes and fill it for about 4/5 full. Put in a steamer with the water already at a rolling boil. Steam for about 20 minutes.

Rujak Medan (Spiced Fruit Salad)

Serves: 6

  • 1 small cucumber, sliced thin
  • 1 cup thinly sliced jicama
  • 1 cup cubed firm ripe papaya
  • 1 star apple (carambola), sliced
  • 1 to 2 cups cubed fresh or canned ripe pineapple
  • 1 firm green pear, cubed
  • 1 firm tart apple, cubed


  • 3 tablespoons dry roasted peanuts
  • 1 or 2 hot red chilies, sliced and seeded
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon tamarind paste, dissolved in 1/2 cup water and strained
  • 1 small green banana, sliced (optional)


Arrange the cucumber and any 3 or more of the fruits in separate heaps on a serving platter.

In a food processor chop fine the peanuts, then blend in the chilies, brown sugar, tamarind, liquid, and banana (if used) to form a paste. It is traditional to serve the sauce and fruit separately. Each diner may then select the fruit and dip it into the thick sauce. The modern method is to toss the fruit and sauce together and serve the salad at room temperature.

Multilayered Butter Cake (Lapis Legit)


  • 570cc or 30 egg yolks
  • 525-600 g butter, whipped or melted
  • 100 g flour, sifted
  • 300 g granulated sugar
  • 3 Tbs. sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 Tbs. special layer cake extract (optional)
  • 15 g powdered milk
  • tps. powdered vanilla extract


Place the egg yolks, granulated sugar and vanilla into mixing bowl. Beat to very high soft peak.

Stir in the layer cake extract, flour and butter. The batter should be very thick.

Place wax paper at the bottom of a 8x8x8 inch buttered baking pan. Spread butter on top of the wax paper as well.

Pour 3-4 Tbs. of batter into the wax covered pan and bake in a preheated 350F oven (gas oven is better than electric oven) for 5 minutes.

Remove from oven and press the cake evenly and then spread butter (not to much, just for flavoring) on cake top. Pour another 3-4 Tbs. of batter and bake it again for five minutes. Keep doing this step until the batter is finished.

Serve when cool.

Makes 30 slices.

Pisang Goreng (Banana Fritters)

Yield: 2 servings


  • 4 Eggs
  • 12 T Flour
  • 4 Ripe bananas
  • Oil for deep frying
  • Cinnamon sugar


Slightly beat eggs and mix with flour and half cup water.

Mash bananas with fork and mix thoroughly with flour and egg mixture. Deep-fry banana and flour mixture by the tablespoonful in hot oil until golden brown.

Drain on absorbent paper and dust with cinnamon sugar.

Crisp Sweet Striped Cookies (Kuping Gajah)


  • 500 gram wheat flour
  • 150 gram granulated sugar
  • tsp. salt
  • tsp. vanilla
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 Tbs. cooking oil
  • 100 cc water
  • Tbs. cocoa powder
  • 800 cc oil for frying


Thoroughly mix sugar, salt and vanilla. Add the beaten eggs and stir well. Add oil, stir once more, and then divide in half.

Divide the flour in half as well. Take 1 Tbs of flour from one part and add it to the other. Mix the flour with each half of the sugar and egg mixture. Add cocoa powder to the smaller mix. Add 50 cc of water to each half. Knead until smooth and not sticky to the touch. There will be two types of dough, white and brown.

Separately, roll both pieces of dough out on a plastic covered cutting board until they are about 1 mm thick. Place the two together, then roll up. Wrap with plastic and place in the refrigerator for approximately an hour or until the dough hardens.

With a sharp knife, cut the dough vertically into flat cylinders about 2 mm thick. Flatten once more with a rolling pin. Fry in hot oil until crisp. Remove, drain.

Sticky Rice Cake in Brown Sugar Sauce (Biji Salak)


Rice Cakes

  • 1 cup glutinous rice flour
  • cup tapioca starch
  • cup water
  • tsp. salt


To make Rice Cake:

Place rice flour and tapioca starch in a deep mixing bowl and make a well in the center.

Add water and salt, mix well and knead dough until it can be rolled and shaped. Dough should not be to dry.

Roll small rice cakes -inch in diameter. Cut diagonally 1-inch in length.

Bring 8 cups of water to a oil. Put it the rice cakes, bring back to a boil and simmer for 5 minutes. Drain and set the rice cakes aside.



  • 3 cups water
  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • cup palm sugar syrup
  • 1 pandan leaf
  • Pinch of salt


To make the sauce:

Combine water, coconut milk, palm sugar, pandan leaf, and a pinch of salt in a small stockpot. Bring to a boil.

Add rice cakes and simmer for 20 minutes.

Cool and serve at room temperature, topped with a tablespoon of fresh grated coconut.

Helpful hints: When preparing the rice cakes, use the amount of water given in the recipe only as a guideline; the quality of flour varies greatly and affects the amount of liquid it absorbs. Add sufficient water to result in a soft, smooth dough. If the rice cakes are dry when shaped, they will be very tough after cooking.

Makes 3 servings.

Sticky Rice Rolls served with Palm Sugar Syrup (Lupis)


  • 200 gr. glutinous rice flour
  • 1 Tbs. slaked lime water
  • banana leaves
  • grated coconut
  • pinch of salt
  • Palm sugar syrup


Soak the glutinuous rice in water for an hour and drain. Add the slaked lime water to make the rice rolls more solid, and stir.

Take a piece of banana leaf and fill it full with glutinuous rice (just like making rice rolls). Secure the ends and tie rolls with string so that they will not burst during the boiling.

Put the rolls in a saucepan and cover with water. Boil for 4 hours, drain and allow the rolls to cool. Add more hot water during the cooking when necessary.

Serve the rolls by cutting it into 2 cm thick slices.

Sprinkle the grated coconut which a pinch of salt has been added on top of the rolls and pour the palm sugar syrup over them.

Stuffed Pancake Roll (Dadar Gulung)



  • 2 cups fresh-grated coconut
  • 10 Tbs. grated Java dark brown sugar
  • 1 Tbs. granulated sugar
  • 1 3-inch cinnamon stick, broken in half
  • tsp. salt



Mix the grated coconut, grated Java dark brown sugar and granulated sugar, cinnamon and tsp.salt together.

Fry the mixture in a dry pan over medium/low heat, constantly stirred for approximately 5 minutes, or until the mixture is dry.

Remove the cinnamon stick, and set it aside.



  • 1 cup rice flour
  • cup cornstarch
  • 1 cups coconut milk
  • tsp. salt
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 3 drops green food coloring (optional)
  • Vegetable oil



Mix the rice flour, cornstarch, coconut milk, tsp. salt, green food coloring and egg into a smooth batter.

Lightly oil an 8-inch frying pan, and pour 3 tablespoon of the batter into the pan. Make sure the pan is equally covered with the batter so it becomes a thin layer pancake. Fry for one minute, turn the pancake over and fry for another minute. Remove and set aside.

Place 2 Tbs. of the coconut mixture on the near edge of the pancake. Fold over once, then tuck in the left and the right sides and fold over once more. Press gently to distribute the filling evenly.

Serve at room temperature.Makes 10-12 servings.

Sweet Coconut Rice Balls (Klepon)


  • 1 cups glutinous powder
  • cup lukewarm water
  • 2-3 drops green food coloring
  • 8 tsp. grated Java dark brown sugar
  • 1 cup fresh-grated coconut, mixed with tsp. salt


Mix the rice powder with the lukewarm water and green food coloring into a firm but flexible dough.

Pull off one full teaspoon of the dough and shape it into a ball with approximately 1-inch in diameter.

Push a finger into the center of the ball to make a hole, and put in approximately tsp. of the grated sugar. Seal, and roll it back into the ball shape with the palms of your hands. Prepare all the balls and set them aside.

Prepare a pot half filled with water and bring it to a boil.

Drop the balls into the boiling water. Remove the balls with a spoon once they float to the water surface and then roll the balls in the grated coconut.

Serve at room temperature. Makes 30 rice balls.

Ketupat (Compressed Rice Cakes)

These firm rice cakes are usually cooked in individual baskets of woven coconut leaves so that the rice swells until it fills the basket and becomes firmly compressed. Here is a simple and more practical way of producing similar results in Western kitchens.

Serves 6


  • 500 g Short or medium grain rice
  • 4 cups Water
  • Banana leaf or aluminium foil


Bring the water and rice to the boil.

Cover tightly with lid.

Turn heat very low and cook for 35-40 minutes until all water is absorbed.

Stir vigorously with a wooden spoon.

Then press rice into a cake tin or pie plate to a depth of about 2.5 cm (1 inch).

Use a piece of washed and greased banana leaf or greased aluminum foil to cover the surface of the rice and put another plate on top.

Press down very firmly the plate.

Put a weight on top and leave at room temperature for a few minutes, until very firm.

Remove weight, plate and banana leaf and use a wet knife to cut rice into 5 cm squares.

Serve with spicy peanut sauce.

Sweet Dodo



  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup brown sugar or palm sugar
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 pandan leaf
  • 1 cinnamon bark (3cm length)


    Combine and strain


  • 2 cups glutinous rice flour
  • 2 tbsp rice flour
  • 4 cups thick coconut milk
  • 200g durian pulp (optional)


  • COMBINE ingredients A and microwave cook on “High” for five minutes.

Add ingredients B and stir well. Microwave on “Medium High” for eight minutes.

Add durian and stir well. Microwave on “Medium High” for four minutes. Stir and return. Repeat this step until mixture thickens.


Kueh Bahulu

Kueh bahulu is a perennial favourite among Malaysians of all ages. It’s soft and slightly dry texture goes very well with black coffee. Kueh bahulu comes in different shapes, but the popular ones are the goldfish and the button (see picture right).


  • 3 egg yolks
  • 4 egg whites
  • 100gm sugar
  • Half teaspoon vanilla essence
  • 100gm wheat flour
  • 1 tablespoon tapioca flour
  • Quarter teaspoon baking powder


1. Sieve wheat and tapioca flour together with baking powder.

2. Whisk the eggs and sugar until stiff.

3. Add the vanilla essence.

4. Fold in 20grms of sifted flour with 100ml of egg batter. Preheat oven to 250 degrees centigrade. Lightly grease the mould (to prevent the bahulu from sticking) and spoon in batter. Do not fill to the top. Bake bahulu for about five minutes.

Alternatively, you can bake bahulu the traditional way using charcoal fire. You have to place the hot coals on top of and under the mould.

Bahulu keeps quite well in an airtight container, but will harden with time.

Recipe from Kak Liza

Almond London Cookies


  • 125g butter
  • 75g icing sugar
  • 1 egg yolk


  • 225g plain flour
  • 1/2 tsp rice flour
  • 300g whole almonds, toasted
  • 450g chocolate, melted
  • Almond nibs, toasted
  • Small paper cases


Cream butter and sugar until light. Beat in egg yolk. Stir in sifted dry ingredients and blend well to form a dough.

Take a small piece of dough, the size of a marble, wrap it around the almond and shape into a ball.

Place dough on lightly greased trays. Bake in preheated oven at 175C for 20-25 minutes or until cooked and golden. Remove and cool on wire racks.

Put cookies inside small paper cases and top with melted chocolate. Sprinkle with almond nibs.


Ping Pei Mooncake with Custard Filling


    • Unbaked pastry skin
    • 150g icing sugar
    • 180g kou fun (commercial cooked glutinous rice flour)
    • 40g shortening
    • 180g ice-cold water
    • A few drops peach colouring
    • 1/8 tsp vanilla essence

Filling (1):

  • 500g lotus paste
  • Custard filling (2):
  • 30g plain flour (A)
  • 45g corn flour (A)
  • 20g custard powder (A)
  • 10g milk powder (A)
  • 150g castor sugar (A)
  • 65g evaporated milk (B)
  • 65g whipping cream (B)
  • 80ml coconut milk (B)
  • 1 egg (B)
  • 20g butter
  • 80g cream style sweet corn



Custard filling (2): Mix (A) together in a mixing bowl.

Add in (B) to mix. Strain mixture into a saucepan. Add in butter and cook over a very low heat, stirring with a hand-whisk until mixture turns creamy. Transfer to a tray and steam for 1012 minutes.

Remove from the steamer, add in sweet corn and blend until fine in a food processor.

Divide into 40g portions. Wrap 1 portion lotus paste (60g) around the custard filling. Leave aside.

Pastry skin: Sift kou fun and icing sugar into a mixing bowl. Make a well in the centre and add shortening, essence and water. Quickly knead until dough is soft and smooth. Leave to rest for 20 minutes. Divide dough into 1/3 portion and add in peach colouring to blend. Leave the remaining portion plain.

Combine plain colour and coloured dough together and cut each into 60g. Flatten dough by rolling between two sheets of plastic wrap. Coat balls of filling with kou fun before wrapping.

Press into a wooden mooncake mould. Knock out to dislodge ping pei mooncake. Chill ping pei mooncake in the refrigerator.

Date and Oat Cookies


    • 200g plain flour Sifted
    • 3/4 tsp baking powder
    • 1/4 tsp salt
    • 75g almonds, coarsely chopped
    • 30g quick cooking oats
    • 140g butter
    • 125g castor sugar
    • 3/4 tsp vanilla essence
    • 1 small egg




  • 100g good quality plain chocolate, melted



Line baking trays with greased greaseproof paper. Put the oats in a food processor and blend until fairly fine. Remove and set aside.

Beat butter, sugar and essence until light and creamy. Add the egg and continue to beat for 1 minute or until light and fluffy.

Sift in flour, baking powder and salt to mix. Briefly stir in the oats, chopped dates and almonds with a metal spoon.

Lightly form into balls Place them on prepared trays and bake in preheated oven at 170C degrees C for 1520 minutes or until golden brown.

Allow to cool for 1 minute on the trays before transferring to wire racks to cool completely.

To melt the chocolate

Put chocolate in a heatproof bowl. Place the bowl over a saucepan of hot water and stir until chocolate melts. Put into a piping bag and pipe fine lines over the cookies.

Coconut Mooncake (Yeh Yoong Mooncake)


    • 600g freshly grated coconut (white part only)
    • 100g cooked glutinous rice flour (ko fun)




  • 150g crystallised candied melon (tung kwa) chopped
  • 50g melon seeds (kwa chee) toasted
  • 75g olive kernels (lum yan) toasted
  • 100g sesame seeds toasted
  • 50g milk powder





  • 4 tbsp corn oil
  • 4 tbsp water
  • 150g sugar
  • 1/2 tsp salt

    Egg glaze:

  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1 tsb water
  • A pinch of salt
  • A drop of dark soy sauce (for colouring)



STEAM grated coconut for 30 mins until soft then leave to cool. Mix (B) together in a mixing bowl. Stir in coconut and mix well. Add in (A) and stir well to mix. Lastly add in ko fun to combine the ingredients.

Divide mixture into equal portions of 110g each. Add a salted egg yolk in the centre of each portion. Wrap up with pastry dough. Seal up the edges. Place into a lightly dusted mooncake mould. Press slightly with the flat of your palm. Knock out the mooncake.

Bake mooncake in a preheated oven at 180C for 10 mins. Remove mooncake from the oven and leave aside for 2 mins. Brush with egg glaze and bake again for 8 mins or until golden brown.

To make egg glaze: Mix well before use.

Preparation of salted egg yolk: Wash the salted egg yolk and roll over in sesame oil. Steam for 2 minutes. Leave to cool.

Nutty Blossom Cookies

Occasion Hari Raya


  • 125g butter
  • 90g sugar
  • 1 tbsp peanut butter
  • 1 egg yolk


  • 200g plain flour
  • 25g rice flour
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 100g peanuts, toasted, skinned and halved
  • 1 egg white, lightly beaten


Grease baking trays with corn oil or melted butter. Preheat oven to 180C.

Cream butter, sugar, egg yolk and peanut butter until pale. Add sifted ingredients and mix well into a dough.

Place dough in between plastic sheets and roll out to 3/4cm thickness. Cut out with a cookie cutter and place on prepared trays. Brush lightly with egg white.

Press peanuts on cookies and bake in preheated oven for 13 to 15 minutes or until golden brown. Leave cookies on baking tray for one to two minutes, then transfer onto a wire rack to cool.