Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Japanese Radish Cake

I was worried at first with so many daikon seedlings that Lenay sowed while we were away for Rayyan surgery almost 3 months ago sprouted. Germination was 100%. I don't think we can possibly harvest them all. I was only planning a row of daikon but Lenay made 3 rows. She and Ilhan must be very bored while we were away. Now I have stop complaining because it has help fill in the gap until other winter vegetables are starting ready to be harvested end of winter or early spring. What is wonderful about daikon compare with other radish variety is that it does not need to be harvest quick because it does not become woody quickly. Moreover, it grow so big very fast. If you have a pet and worried about them trampling on daikon seedlings, don't worry, they are almost stomp-proof. We grow daikon at the back of our fence on a reserve land and one day a driver who wanted to test his car during dusk drove through those young daikon seedlings which just sprouted true leaf. Those seedling look pretty bad and I thought they won't survived as some were totally squash out. I don't say those word out aloud because Lenay is having tears in her eyes since it is her project patch. She planted and hill up the ones that were uprooted. Surprisingly they did grow pretty good (photo as evidence).
I have only started growing plants on this area last August so the soil is still very hard. Since I can see white roots on top of the soil, I reckon those daikon is already having a very hard time to push into the soil for bigger and longer root growth. I pull several out last weekend and it was not an easy thing to do. We have to be careful or the roots breaks in the soil and you have to dig out the rest part of the root which is not easy since the soil is very hard. Avoid pulling the top but hold on to the roots and try to turn them right and left gently to pull them up. Some of the daikon has reach their limit to try breaking the soil to grow some roots and start to become forky. Daikon can grow at least 40~50cm long and like potato, it is a good soil-breaker. Because of that, I have already planned to grow garlic on this row of daikon after I finished harvesting this long white root.
Fresh home-grown vegetables are the best thing but eating daikon many times a week will probably make you wish for other stuff as well. So last weekend project was about searching and trying new recipe with radish other than soup or stir-fry daikon with anchovies which what has been prepared in our kitchen since the daikon harvest started in our garden. If you have a glutton of radish and run out of ideas to prepare it, here is a recipe that I tried from Terry Tan's The Thai Table cooking book ~ Steamed Radish Cake (Khanom Chai Tau). I am not a very good student for following step-by-step instruction in cooking but it is not difficult to prepare.
Steamed Radish Cake (Khanom Chai Tau)
Makes one 200gram cake
Daikon 900gram , peeled and grated
Rice flour 400gram
Tapioca flour or Corn flour (cornstarch) 55 gram
Water 125ml
Salt 2tsp
Cooking oil 2Tbsp
Vegetable Stock cube 1, crushed

Place grated radish in a blender and blend until fine. Set aside.
Combine both types of flour and sift into a mixing bowl. Gradually add water and mix well. Mixture should be thick and moist. Add salt, oil, stock cube and radish. Mix until well blended.
Transfer mixture to a non-stock, medium-sized pot. Cook over low heat for 10 minutes, or until cake is firm. Remove from pot and steam over high heat for 30 minutes. Radish cake is ready when an inserted toothpick comes out clean. Set aside to cool before use.
A very healthy vegetarian cake.
Note: Some people needs to get used of the strong daikon flavour before having this. When I asked my husband what does it taste like? Taste like you are eating daikon...hmmm...I would probably used 2 vegetable stock cube next time. This is our first taste of Steamed Japanese Radish cake and I think it goes well eating it together with sambal ikan bilis (chili anchovies). Looks like kuih bingka when its cooked.
White Wednesday at Faded Charm.
It is the first day of winter here and it is such a fine sunny day today, although cold if you go outside.
Hazel is celebrating our first winter day this year with Winter Wednesday.


Charmcitybalconygarden said...

I think these are the little cakes I've had at dim sum that I absolutely love! I'll have to try making one...I thought it was super complicated...well, it probably is but maybe with the recipe in hand I can make an attempt! Good job digging out those daikon!! L

Veggie Gnome said...

Yum yum yum! Well done.

Good thinking - to let the daikon do the digging for you! Parsnip are good for that, too. :)

Katie M said...

My husband loves Daikon, I really should try growing some soon! Your posts are always so inspirational :)

Cat-from-Sydney said...

MKG dear,
Is this the lobak cake we have for dim sum? Looks so yummy. I envy you your garden. purrr....meow!

cikmanggis said...

salam Diana.Memang seronook tanam lobak putih tetapi jika terlalu banyak tak termakan pulak.Pokok yang Cm tanam pun ubinya naik keatas walaupun tanah gembur:)

Mark Willis said...

I am trying to grow daikon in my garden for the first time this year, but I don't think I will have a glut - I have only about 12 plants, because I can't afford the space for more.
Your recipe looks good, by the way.

Kelli said...

Your radish cake looks amazing! Your autumn harvest of yesterday's post looks so very good and healthy. Will you be freezing some of your chilis? All the best, Kelli.

Beam said...

What an interesting recipe! I would really like to have a taste. I can't really imagine what it tastes like. I am not a bit fan of Radishes but this does look like it could be something for me! It is funny how I understand a few words whenever you write in Malay like that Sambal. I know that ikan is fish! I speak a little Indonesian and those two languages seem to be very close! I am from Germany and I have spend 3 months in Yogyakarta 2 years ago. Thanks for your comment on my blog! :) There is hardly someone reading it though. I guess I should decide weather to write in German or English. Thank you for checking by anyways! :)

Shaheen said...

Thank you so much for the recipe which I am bookmarking to make one of these days.

tina said...

I've never eaten daikon before. The cake sounds interesting. Glad the seedlings came back after being run over.

Chloe m said...

I would try that! Thanks for sharing the recipe.

Malay-Kadazan girl said...

Charmcitybalconygarden~ I am not a good cook especially if trying a dish that I have to read and have never tasted before. It is easy to prepare, I believe you are a better cook than me.

Veggie Gnome~ Those carrots at the back are doing a good job of shading those slow-growing parsnip at the back row. Hopefully parsnip won't mind that much and help break the soil.

Heart-in-asia~ Daikon are very cold-hardy vegetables.

Angelina~ I am not sure cos I don't eat much radish before this. Now I am curious does eating dim sum usually with lobak cake? Probably I ate it before but did not notice that I was eating radish....hahaha...

Cikmanggis~ Dah terlampau banyak sangat ni terpaksa cari cara masakan baru supaya family members tak merungut sangatlah. Tapi syukur ada rezeki dekat kebun sendiri :).Lobak putih bagus untuk orang berpantang ke?

Mark~ I think 12 daikons is a good number for 2 people. You will have 12 meals for it which is good. If you let them grow big, one daikon will probably take a few meals to finish it.

Kelli~I have been freezing our chilis. We have 3 bags full of it now.

Beam~Indonesian and Malay are the same language is just the dialect made it a bit different. The recipe is a fun thing to try. I am not a radish fan either. Trying to find good recipes that would make me a fan of daikon ;-). You pick many good words while you stayed in Yogyakarta.

Mangocheeks~Hope you like it!

Tina~It was my first vegetarian cake, a very interesting experience making it. I would say some will like it, some will not:).

Rosey~Hope you have a fun time making this cake:).

Jody said...

I was first introduced to Daikon radishes when I was in school and working in the produce department. I really liked to snack on them. So sweet and juicy. Your recipe makes me want to grow them now. What a great idea. Thanks.

Wendy said...

I like the looks of radish cake in this way - spicy and oniony! Our Cantonese radish cake is equally good when you can find it at dim sum restaurants. Those daikon radishes look gorgeous in the ground!

Malar said...

Those are big and healthy look radish! I just started to grow them but my is very thin. Your radish look so fat!
Thanks for the recipe!

Malay-Kadazan girl said...

Jody~ I think they probably do very well in your garden now. End summer is a great time to sow daikon too.

Wendy~I must visit some dim sum restaurant and have a taste of what radish cake taste like.

Malar~These are almost 3 months old daikon.

Lanie said...

Great to read your post, as I just bought some daikon seeds in a seed-buying-frenzy!