Friday, September 23, 2011


"Is there an illegal version of it?"

Wen asked.

The conversation started "I thought you were making kuih lapis as in the 9 layer kuih with red pink and white stripes! Say la it's Sunflower* cake"

The sentence before was actually "It's call Kuih lapis Legit". And hence Wen's reaction of the illegal version.

*Sunflower cake is a brand that sells only kuih lapis Sarawak, which taste like heaven and cinnamon together, moist and fattening, just the kind we love. And one fine day the bakery at Uptown decided to vanish into thin air, leaving heaven no longer a place on earth. But hope is still there when there is a hungry kid with the time to spare, a little patience and 20 egg yolks.

It was Raya and all I can think of is kuih lapis (the sunflower version, not pink red stripe_ and prior to that one of my friend gave me a small loaf of Nescafe kuih lapis, but nothing taste as good as the original flavour. And so I went in search for Kuih Lapis Legit recipes. Recipe adapted from MadBaker, but I changed it a little. Instead of 340g of sugar I used about 290grams (and it taste alright, not too sweet!) and for the mixed spice I made it myself by mixing cinnamon powder (1 teaspoon), star anise (about 5) and cloves (about 12). (REMEMBER to sift your ground spices before adding into the flour!). And I double sifted my flour cause I want more air incorporated (did you know that the more you sift your flour, the less you'll need? I actually had extra 10 grams of flour after I double sift it!)


Kueh Lapis Spekkoek (legit!)

20 egg yolks
4 egg whites
500g salted butter
3 tbsp condensed milk
290g sugar
200g plain flour
2 tsp ground mixed spices
2 tsp vanilla essence

1. Butter the base of an 8″ X 8″ X 2.5″ pan and line with baking parchment.
2. Pre-heat your oven, selecting the grill function.
3. Sift the plain flour and mixed spices together.
4. Beat the egg yolks and sugar together until pale yellow, thick and creamy
5. Cream the butter and condensed milk together until soft and fluffy. Add the creamed butter to the egg yolk mixture and mix until combined.
6. Beat the egg whites until medium firm peaks.
7. Fold in the egg whites, followed by the flour mixture into the rest of the batter.
8. Stir in the vanilla essence and rum until well-combined.
9. Spread a thin layer of batter onto the parchment paper.
10. Grill for 7 - 8 mins on the lowest rack in your oven or until lightly golden brown.
11. Remove cake pan from oven and press the baked layer down lightly with a metal fondant smoother. Prick all over the layer of cake with a toothpick.
12. Repeat steps 9 to 11 for each layer. (Optional: Add prunes on every second or third layer).
13. For the last layer, turn the oven down to 180 degrees C and bake on middle rung for 15 minutes or until golden brown.
14. Remove from oven and run a paring knife along the edges of the cake pan.
15. Turn the kueh lapis out of the pan and remove the baking parchment.
16. Flip cake back upright and let cool.

This is like my version of daring bakers challenge. You'll never know how the processes work till you try it! It was pretty tiring considering you'll need to check it every few minutes. I think it's best to preheat your pan in the oven so the batter spreads easily around. Use a scoope or measuring cup to pour into the pan to get more even layers. Mine was a little burnt cause I made a mistake by grilling the last layer first THEN I bake it for another 10 minutes or so. Also it doesn't help if you're skyping with a friend in Singapore while baking cause you get preoccupied and forgotten to check on the layers hence there were darker "lines" in certain layer cause the top was a little charred. And that's prolly the reason my cake was a little dry at the end, but I guess after leaving out for a couple of days it should be more moist and the flavour of the spices will set it more. Give it a go!!! I took about 3.5 hours to prep and bake. For easier steps, prep everything before you start mixing the ingredients, that way things will go smoothly and you won't mix up the steps. ;)

20 egg yolks, is a whole lot of cholesterol. Did I mention 500 grams of butter too? No wonder they taste so good.

Tip: for normal oven without the top bottom option (like mine) put on Grill function and what I did was place a pan at the very bottom rack to "shield" direct heat on the bottom layer, so the only the top layer is being grilled. And I've read recipes of them baking it in a waterbath, I think that's how they make it more moist, shall try it next time!! :)

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