Kuih bakul in high demand despite quiet CNY

Freshly made kuih bakul by Roti Lazeez Enterprise.
BY AFIEZUL SAMIT

KUCHING: Every Chinese New Year, Roti Lazeez Enterprise’s kuih bakul is sure to be in high demand.

According to the Muslim-owned food company’s owner Noor Asmah Mohamed Mokhtar, she learned how to make the cake from a Chinese friend six years ago.

“After my friend tasted the moon cakes I made, she suggested that I should also make kuih bakul.

“I did not feel confident enough to make the cake at first as I did not know how.

Noor Asmah shows the traditional way of making kuih bakul.

“That was when my friend, the same person who taught me how to make moon cakes, offered to teach me to make kuih bakul.

“When I was learning to make kuih bakul, I also came to know of several taboos when making this traditional Chinese cake, such as not being allowed to talk,” she said.

Further elaborating, she said that as a Muslim she saw the taboos as more of a ‘self-disciplined method’ to be more focused in the kitchen in order to produce high quality food.

She also said that although this year’s Chinese New Year was a quiet one, she was grateful that the demand for her kuih bakul was high.

“Apart from selling moon cakes, my company also sells chocolate-based products branded as Chelum Sarawak Chocolate.

“However, the production of these chocolates had to be temporarily stopped due to the lack of stock of main ingredients.

“Therefore, the demand for the kuih bakul has been helpful in increasing the company’s income,” she said.

According to the 44-year-old baker, her kuih bakul can be eaten as it is or fried with yam leaves, popiah skin, or eggs.

For those who are unfamiliar, kuih bakul is a traditional Chinese cake made using finely milled glutinous rice flour, sugar, and water. The batter is then steamed for several hours until the cake turns into a brown colour.

This must-have delicacy during Chinese New year has a sweet taste accompanied by a sticky texture.

For kuih bakul fans or those who wish to try the cake, you can get them from Roti Lazeez Enterprise.

Freshly made kuih bakul by Roti Lazeez Enterprise.