I love this Chai Kuih recipe, it has a soft and slightly chewy crystal dumpling skin and taste delicious with the sweet and savoury yam bean (also known as jicama or sengkuang) filling.
Chai Kueh is a popular Chinese Snack in Malaysia. This is a Healthy snack to enjoy as it is steamed and filled with vegetables.
WHY YOU’LL LOVE THIS RECIPE
- The Crystal Dumpling Skin and Soft and Slightly Chewy and does not harden even after it cools to room temperature
- The dough skin is easy to work with and does not tear easily while wrapping
IIMPORTANT COOKING TIPS
Add other ingredients such as carrots or mushrooms
I only used basic ingredients in this recipe as I like the taste profile using these ingredients. Feel free to experiment other ingredients
Use a knife to cut the yam bean for a crunchy texture
I shredded the yam bean for this recipe. After steaming, it will have a soft texture. So if you prefer a crunchy texture, use a knife to cut instead
The water has to be boiling hot when pouring into the mixed flour
If the water is not hot enough, the dough will tear easily while wrapping
When flattening the dough into a disk shape, flour the surface with cornstarch.
Cornstarch will keep the dough soft after steaming even after it cools down to room temperature
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
I DO NOT HAVE A STEAM BASKET?
If you don’t have a steam basket, you can use a normal steamer. There may be water condensation but it should not have much adverse effect on the dumplings
CAN I PLACE THE DUMPLINGS ON THE STEAM RACK INSTEAD OF USING BAKING PAPER?
Yes you can. Oil the steam rack so that it doesn’t stick onto it. Or alternatively you can use banana leave.
HOW TO I KNOW WHEN THE DUMPLINGS ARE COOKED?
The dumpling skin will turn slightly translucent when cooked
CAN I SUBSTITUTE WHEAT STARCH WITH SOME OTHER STARCH?
Unfortunately no as the wheat starch is the main ingredients in this recipe.
IS WHEAT STARCH THE SAME AS WHEAT FLOUR?
No. Wheat starch is a byproduct of wheat flour. The cannot be used interchangeably.
Yam bean filling （沙葛馅）：
- 1-2 (850 grams) yam bean / sengkuang , skinned and shredded （1-2个（850克）沙葛，去皮，切丝）
- 30 grams dried shrimp soaked 15 min and chopped (30克虾米,浸软15分钟，剁碎)
- 6 shallots (6个小洋葱)
- 6 Cloves garlic (6 瓣大蒜)
- 4 tbsp cooking oil （4汤匙油）
- Pinch of sugar（少许糖）
- 2 tbsp light soy sauce （2汤匙生抽）
- 1/2 tsp dark soy sauce （1/2茶匙黑酱油）
- 1 tsp corn starch （1茶匙玉米粉）
- 1 tbsp water （1汤匙水）
Ingredients for skin （皮料）：
- 120 grams tapioca starch （120克木薯粉）
- 120 grams wheat starch /tang mien fun（120克澄粉）
- 1/2 tsp salt （1/2茶匙盐）
- 350ml/grams boiling water （350克、毫升开水）
- 1 tbsp oil (1汤匙油）
- 1/2 cup cornstarch (1/2 杯玉米淀粉)
- shallot oil/garlic oil 小样葱油/蒜油
First let’s prepare the filling:
- Soak dried shrimps for 15 minutes. Strain off the excess water and set aside.
- Next, mince 6 cloves of garlic and cut the shallots into small cubes. Chop the soaked dried shrimps into small pieces and set them aside.
- Peel off the skin and shred yam bean into thin strips. If you prefer a crunchy texture, you can use a knife to cut the yam beans.
- Heat 4 tablespoons of cooking oil in a pan. Add the minced garlic, shallots, and dried shrimps. Cook on low to medium heat until they become fragrant and turn slightly golden brown. Then, add the shredded yam beans and toss a few times. Season the mixture with some light soy sauce, sugar, and dark soy sauce. Fry until all the water evaporates, and finally, add cornstarch slurry to the filling. Set it aside and let it cool to room temperature.
Now, let's make the dumpling skin:
- Prepare 28 pieces of baking paper beforehand, each measuring about 5 cm by 7 cm.
- In a mixing bowl, combine wheat starch, tapioca starch, and 1/2 teaspoon of salt. Mix well. In a pot, bring 350 ml of water to a boil. Then pour it into the mixed flour. The water should be boiling hot just before pouring it in. Add 1 tablespoon of oil and knead the mixture until you get a smooth dough. There will be no clumps or dry flour. By then, the dough should will also be quite stretchy.
- Work on half of the dough first and cover the remaining portion to prevent it from drying out.
- Use cornstarch to flour the surface. It will help the dough remain soft after steaming.
- Roll the dough into a long log shape, about 42 cm in length, and then cut it into 12-14 pieces. Cover with a damp cloth to prevent it from drying out.
- Now, take one piece of the dough and flatten it into a disk shape. Initially, use a rolling pin to get a nice round shape. Then flatten it further. (refer to video). Flatten to about 10 cm diameter. Repeat this process with the rest of the dough. You should end up with 24- 28 pieces of flattened dough.
- Fold the dumplings into any shape you like. I’m going to do a leaf shape. (refer to video) To shape the dumplings, use your thumb and index finger, with the remaining fingers to support the base of the dough.
- Pinch the end and pull towards the middle. At the same time, use the thumb or index finger on the other hand to push the dumpling skin in the opposite direction. Then pinch the dough to make a pleat.
- Bring water to a boil. Then steam the dumplings on high heat for 8-10 minutes until the dough skin turns slightly translucent. After steaming, brush some shallot or garlic oil on the skin to keep it soft when it cools down. Enjoy while it’s warm.