Coconut features heavily in Malay kuihs, whether it’s shredded or santan (coconut milk). While flavourful, this does mean that the kuihs have to be eaten fresh or refrigerated as they will spoil otherwise. Palm sugar ( gula Melaka) is also a common ingredient in these kuihs and generally forms the filling. Like Chinese and Nyonya kuihs, most Malay kuihs are steamed, sometimes in banana leaves for added fragrance.
The green-and-white serimuka is one of the most popular kuihs – it’s easy to like with its sweet green pandan (screwpine)-flavoured custard layer atop glutinous rice. It’s often confused with kuih talam, which has a white layer of coconut milk, rice flour and green pea flour on top of a denser green pandan layer, thanks to the addition of tapioca flour. Then there’s the chewy kuih bingka ubi (baked tapioca cake), which is said to be best when crispy brown.
Ondeh-ondeh, chewy rice flour balls that burst with gula Melaka when bitten, is a fan favourite too. Then there’s kuih koci, a triangular rice flour dumpling stuffed with gula Melaka and coconut; or the steamed kuih kosui made from gula Melaka, rice flour and tapioca starch. That’s to say nothing of kuih ketayap – a rolled pandan pancake filled with coconut and gula Melaka – or kuih lopes, a glutinous rice cake with gula Melaka syrup poured onto it. Yes, the ingredients are similar but to the kuih connoisseur, each one is a little piece of heaven unto itself! EL
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1. ONDEH- ONDEH 2. KUIH KETAYAP 3. KUIH KOCI 4. KUIH SAGO 5. PULUT INTI 6. KUIH KOSUI 7. KUIH LOPES 8. SERIMUKA 9. KUIH BINGKA UBI 10. KUIH PUTERI AYU