Ying's ideas of easy Chinese home-cooking

Cantonese Radish Cake

百分百成功广式萝卜糕

I made the radish cake for this Chinese New Year last night. I should had made it before the New Year but I had been unwell for more than a week and grandparents passed away, so I didn’t prepare.

Radish cake is one of the most traditional Cantonese dim-sum that can be obtained in any dimsum house or breakfast bistro. My late grandpa liked it so much, especially during his last days. Radish cake is among the few he was able to have. I couldn’t stop missing him when making the cake.

I have made radish cake for Chinese New Year for many years and I can make perfect cake now. I have experienced and improved this recipe for many times and friends of mine have practiced and proved it can definitely make delicious radish cake. It’s a detailed recipe but not complicated at all, actually it takes less than one hour to prepare and make.

Ingredients –
Chinese white radish, 1, cleaned and peeled;
Dry shiitake mushroom, 3, 50g;
Cantonese sausage, 2;
Dry mini shrimp, 3tbsp;
Dry big scallop, 2;
Rice flour, 2 cups. Make sure it’s not glutinous rice flour.

How to do –
1. Let’s prepare the ingredients. Dry shiitake mushroom and dry scallop need to be soaked in water till soft. So I would suggest you to soak them in the morning and make the cake in the evening. Anyway, the cake needs to set in fridge overnight otherwise it would be hard to cut apart nicely. The Cantonese sausage can be obtained easily. Usually typical type is long and thin. Two or one and a half would be good enough;

2. Now let’s prepare the radish. This step is important for you need the taste of radish in the cake also to keep the texture of the radish. So I would process the radish in three ways, grating, shredding, and slicing. Squeeze the processed radish but make sure you keep the juice. It would be needed in making the batter later. In this way, I have 480g squeezed radish and about 1 cup of radish juice. To squeeze out the radish juice is important. In this way it would be easier to evaluate how much liquid when mixing the batter. For the amount of radish in this recipe, 450g to 500g would be alright;

3. Shiitake mushroom and sausage diced; dry scallop tore apart but keep the water that soaked the scallop, it’s full of good flavour and I would make the batter with it later;

4. Now everything is prepared. Let’s start cooking. I strongly recommend to use a non-stick pan otherwise you would cry when cleaning the pan. Heat 1tbsp of oil in hot pan, put in the sausage, fry in medium heat till fat released and fragrant;
5. Keep medium heat, put in dry shrimp and scallop, fry till fragrant;

6. Put in the shiitake mushroom, also fry till fragrant;
7. Put in the radish, mix well with other ingredients. Lid on and let them cook in medium heat for five minutes;

8. Now let’s prepare the batter. I now have one and a half cups of liquid mixture of radish juice and water soaked scallop. Add half cup of water. And now mix this 2 cups of liquid mixture with 2 cups of rice flour. The proportion of the liquid and flour, and the batter and other ingredients, are crucial. I would suggest to follow the proportions in this recipe strictly. Well, 2 and a half cups of liquid and flour would be alright;

9. Now you could taste the fried ingredients and season a little bit. But actually they are salty enough. I would put 1tsp of sugar. No salt, no MSG, no pepper. There shouldn’t any sauce in the pan. If there is, turn up the heat and reduce it, otherwise you would need to add a little rice flour in the batter;

10. Now this is the other important step. In low heat, put in the batter, mix with frying spoon immediately. The batter would set quickly and you would find it hard to stir. Don’t worry, try your best to stir the batter so that all ingredients coated with batter. Within one minute, the batter is half-cooked and set, not runny. Heat off;

11. Line the cake tin with a thin layer of oil and put in the cake mixture. Press it down hard;
12. It’s time to steam the cake. Water in steamer bring to boil, put in the cake tin, and cover it with tinfoil, not tightly, leave some gaps for it to breath. Steam in high heat for 20 minutes then remove the tinfoil, steam for 10 more minutes;

13. It depends on the size of the cake. Sometimes you need a bit more time steaming. Check if the cake is cooked with a chopstick. Stick a chopstick into the middle of the cake. If it turns out clean then it’s cooked, if there’s white batter on then give a bit more time;

14. Let it cool down in room temperature and keep in fridge overnight so that it can be cut nicely. Cut it into about 1cm thick slice and pan-fry double sides;

15. They are usually served with garlic chili sauce or sriracha chili sauce.

I also wrote a Chinese version here.

话说往年都是年前就做年糕了,但今年过年前病了一个多星期,啥都没准备,只能现在才来做。萝卜糕是我家最喜欢的年糕,也是平时饮茶的时候必点的点心。前不久去世的外公最喜欢吃萝卜糕了,尤其是在临走前的一两年他很多东西都吃不下,只有萝卜糕是他爱吃而且能经常吃的点心。昨晚制作的时候,还是忍不住怀念。

好的萝卜糕除了料足以外,还要能吃到萝卜的口感,咬口要松软但不松散。我自己在家做萝卜糕好几年了,这两年终于试验出这个一定能成功的方法。做萝卜糕最重要的两点就是水粉比例以及炒粉浆这个步骤。这个菜谱能够比较好的把握水粉比例。另外我看了有些朋友写的菜谱是没有炒粉的步骤的。如果粉浆没有炒至半熟凝固的话,蒸的时候料是会沉淀的,蒸好的糕就会分层。萝卜糕的配料除了萝卜以外,我觉得腊肠、虾米和香菇是必须的,我还放了瑶柱(干贝)。

好吧,希望大家能够试一下我的办法,也能做出比广式茶楼做的更好吃的萝卜糕。

用料——
白萝卜 1根
腊肠 2根
虾米 3汤匙
大瑶柱 2颗
花菇 3朵,约50克
粘米粉 2杯

做法——
1. 先备料。香菇我选用的是花菇,因为比较厚,所以要泡几个小时,最好早上泡晚上做,毕竟萝卜糕要放冰箱定型才比较好切的,所以晚上做第二天早餐吃最好了。瑶柱泡水,这个水别倒掉,要用来开粉的。腊肠我用的是这种东莞腊肠,如果一般瘦长型的腊肠一根半到两根就足够了。虾米稍微泡水五分钟就好;
2. 这里重点说一下萝卜。好的萝卜糕是要能吃到萝卜丝的,所以一部分萝卜磨成蓉,一部分拉细丝,一部分切成条。下面一步很重要,切好的萝卜用手挤出水分,不用挤得非常干。挤走水分的萝卜大约480克,所以大家做的时候以450克到500克为宜。萝卜汁约一杯,不要倒掉,待会跟瑶柱水一起用来开粉浆;
3. 花菇和腊肠切丁;瑶柱用手捏开。这样料就备好了。下面开始来炒料;
4. 尽量用不粘锅,要不然炒完粉浆以后洗锅要哭。锅热放一点油,下腊肠用中火炒香炒至出油;
5. 下虾米和瑶柱丝炒香,保持中火;
6. 下花菇粒炒香;
7. 下萝卜炒香并搅拌均匀,盖上锅盖中火煮五分钟。萝卜和香菇是不容易蒸熟的,所以要煮至半熟再蒸制;
8. 萝卜在煮的过程中,我们来开粉浆。刚才的瑶柱水和萝卜汁加起来大约有一杯半左右,千万不要倒掉了,再加半杯水,共两杯水的分量,加入两杯粘米粉,搅拌均匀。这个粉和水的量是对应刚才萝卜和其他料的比例的。每个人喜欢的口感不一样,有人喜欢料多有人喜欢糕多。我的建议是,可以再多加水和粉,譬如两杯半粘米粉和两杯半液体。料太多蒸出来的糕不成型的。这个菜谱里的料其实蛮多的了;
9. 这时候料已经炒好了。可以试一下味道,我加了一茶匙糖。有瑶柱和虾米就没必要放鸡粉了。这时候料应该是湿润但不出水的。如果你炒的料出水很厉害,要开大火收干,要不然影响待会炒浆。如果实在是出水严重,粉浆里面要多加些粉;
10. 现在来炒浆,这一步是制作萝卜糕最重要的一步。调至小火,倒入粉浆。马上搅拌。这时候你看到粉浆开始变色并且凝固。搅拌起来比较困难。没关系的,用力翻拌。这个过程一分钟就好。粘米粉成型非常快。炒浆是为了把所有料粘合起来,在蒸的过程中料不会沉淀,并且粉浆炒至半熟也减少蒸制的时间,更容易熟透;
11. 我用的是这种锡纸做的糕盘,如果没有的话用别的深盘铺上锡纸或者牛油纸都可以。涂一层油上去方便脱盘。把刚才炒好的混合物放进盘里,压紧压平;
12. 水开以后隔水大火蒸半小时。我蒸的方法是这样的。先用锡纸盖住蒸二十分钟,不要盖严实,然后打开锡纸蒸十分钟,最后十分钟要注意如果锅盖的水蒸气积聚过多要揭开一点倒掉。这样做能防止水蒸气倒流到糕上,又能确保表面蒸熟;
13. 蒸糕的时间视乎糕的大小厚度,用筷子从中间戳进去,出来是干净的就熟了,如果还是白白的还要再蒸。蒸好的糕放凉后放冰箱一晚定型,这样才比较好切片;
14. 切开看看这个横截面,你看料非常多但同时是成型的;
15. 切成约一厘米厚的片,煎锅内多放点油,煎至两面金黄;
16. 配蒜蓉辣椒酱或者是拉差吃。

好的萝卜糕是能吃到萝卜丝的,所以不要都磨成萝卜泥虽然看着好像好多步骤,但其实做起来也不用一小时,当然如果你做很多分给别人的话大半天是跑不掉的,家庭锅炉也是有火力的局限性。这个菜谱的量大概可以做一个大的或者两个小分量的萝卜糕。还是希望大家都先按照我的分量和方法试试看,希望你们也会喜欢这款经典的广式点心。

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