Thursday, 23 December 2010

Yummy Singaporean Souvenirs

Slices of kueh lapis cake
When I was in Singapore, I tried a cake at the Fullerton Hotel called kueh lapis, which is a Malaysian cake similar to the Chinese "thousand layer cake". Kueh Lapis uses a lot of egg yolks, some egg whites, butter, vanilla, sugar, brandy, and flour among the ingredients and each layer is baked before adding on the next layer, resulting in a very tedious dessert that takes hours to make.

However the end result is beautiful, with lots of layers in brown and golden brown and it's not too sweet.

As a parting gift, the hotel gave me a kueh lapis cake and I asked if it could be put in the freezer, but was advised not to. It had to be eaten pretty much right away, and when eating it, to stick a slice in the microwave to warm it up a bit.

So since the cake couldn't wait another week, I shared the cake with my colleagues and they all enjoyed it.

When we got to Changi airport and checked in, the first matter of business was to buy pandan cakes.

Whenever people come back from Singapore I see them carrying these maroon-coloured boxes and they're filled with pandan cakes.

The pandan cake fresh out of the box after the deep freeze
It's also another Malay dessert and it's basically like an angel food cake with a bit of green colouring, mostly from pandan leaves and some artificial colouring. It also has a hint of coconut flavour.

Pandan leaves are usually used in Southeast Asian cooking to add flavour to curry dishes and desserts. The fresh leaves are torn in strips and then placed in the pot with the other ingredients, much like bay leaves, and then removed after cooking. For desserts, the juice is extracted and is either sold as an extract or paste.

The counter selling these cakes at the airport was doing a brisk business. I asked if the cake could be put in the freezer and as soon as store clerk said yes, I was sold. And for only S$10 ($7.64) for a whole cake!

I tried a sample piece and the cake is so light and fluffy and not too sweet that you can't help but want another slice!

As soon as I got home I put the pandan cake in the freezer... for two weeks.

Yesterday I finally dropped it off at my favourite dessert place Riquiqui, where the girls there, Amanda and Andrea told me the last time I was there that they LOVE pandan cakes.

And pastry chef Amanda ate a slice and pronounced it practically as good as fresh.

So -- if you're going to Singapore the perfect edible souvenir to bring back is the pandan cake.

Just make sure you buy enough cakes!

1 comment:

  1. it must be good because of amanda's stamp of approval.