After almost 6 years of living overseas and always craving for this one Singaporean dish, I finally got down to making it myself.
You know how thinking of a type of food never fails to transport you to homesickness-land? And you wish that the restaurants sell it so that you don't have to fly halfway across the world to satisfy your craving?
For me, it was always black carrot cake or "cai tao kway" as they call it in Singapore. I would dream of it, crave for it and each time I visit Singapore, it would be on my "must-eat -immediately" list.
And I don't even know why I took such a long time to muster the courage to try cooking it. I guess I kept hearing from others about how difficult it is to make the "cake" or how many times one has to try making it before succeeding.
In all humility, it was seriously not as tough as I had imagined it to be. Pandan cake is a whole lot harder to make. Compared to that, carrot cake is truly a piece of cake.
I have tried making it twice and I must say that the taste is pretty authentic while the consistency is about 80% there.
And guess what? I managed to find a short-cut method too. I used Sammy's babycook (food puree machine) to puree the radish with a bit of water. The end product was very fine and this resulted in a very smooth steamed carrot cake. :) This saved me sooo much time cos I didn't have to grate the radish from scratch!
Carrot cake after steaming
Carrot cake cut into half and removed from the pot
That's half the portion cut into cubes and fried in oil
Add eggs and chai por
The final product! Now I don't have to wait for my annual trip to Singapore to indulge in this dish. What joy!!!!
- 1 radish, grated (about 500 grams)
- 250 grams water
- 200 grams rice flour
- 1/4 tsp salt
1. Puree the radish with a bit of water in a puree machine / babycook. Drain.
2. Mix the above ingredients and steam it over high heat for about 40 mins or until you get a smooth cake.
3. Allow the cake to cool before cutting it into small pieces to fry.
- 5 cloves Garlic (chopped)
- 2 tbsp Chai Por (preserved radish. Soak in water for 5 mins and drain)
- 3 Eggs, beaten
- Fish sauce to taste
- Tai Hwa sweet black sauce
- Spring Onions (chopped)
3. Heat up some oil in a wok. Fry the carrot cake until crisp and a bit browned.
4. Add Chai por and chopped garlic. Add more oil if it gets too dry.
5. Add fish sauce to season.
6. Pour beaten egg over fried carrot cake. Allow egg to cook for a bit before flipping it over.
7. Add spring onions and fry. (I like my spring onions cooked)
8. Add sweet black sauce and coat. I add mine generously because I like my carrot cake sweet. You can omit this step if you prefer the white version.