Asian turnip, daikon or in Chinese-Mandarin we simply say white carrot, is the main ingredient used in this dish, along with rice flour (and I used the one leftover from my Faithful to Nature challenge). This lovely vegetable has a mild radishy taste to its white translucent flesh. This dish is a Chinese snack from Hong Kong, and sits comfortably on a dim sum menu. Its traditional recipe includes dried shrimp and Chinese sausage, ingredients I won’t be using in this recipe to make this a vegan/vegetarian version.
Growing up, we’ve always had these snacks around the house. My mama would fry them and we’d wait eagerly around the kitchen for the first hot ones to hit the plate and squabble over the first piece with chopsticks. It’s relatively simple, it just takes some time to steam and rest the dish. For this dish, my friend Chi Chi and I created a recipe video which was incredibly fun to make (mind you, I only have mini loaf tins that fit in the steamer – you can use anything really as long as you can get slices out of it). Make it ahead of time so it’s easy serving – refrigerate for 10 days in cling film or freeze it.
Click here to see our video on Youtube 🙂
Chinese Turnip Cake (蘿蔔糕)
1 appetiser serving for 2 people | 30 minutes prep time (excluding: 50 minutes steaming & 1 hour and 30 minutes resting)
- 250g Daikon (grated)
- 1/4 C Rice Wine (if you don’t have rice wine, just use 1 C Water instead of 3/4 C)
- 3/4 C Water
- Sesame oil for cooking
- 8 Shiitake mushrooms (sliced)
- 1 Spring onion (sliced)
- 2 C Rice flour
- Seasoning: white pepper, salt and brown sugar
Cook the grated turnip down with water and rice wine for about 5 minutes.
Set aside to cool.
Panfry the shiitake mushroom slices with sesame oil, then add the spring onions.
Add the shiitake mix to the turnip mix.
Separately, mix the dry goods together in a large mixing bowl till even.
Add the cooled turnip mixture and mix.
Prep a loaf tin with cling film and brush oil on the film so the cake doesn’t stick to the tin.
Prepare a steamer, and let the loaf steam for 50 minutes.
Once steamed, allow it to rest and cool down – makes it easier to slice.
Cut 1–2cm thick slices and panfry till golden brown.
Serve with thick soya sauce, spring onion and chopped coriander (Chi Chi doesn’t enjoy coriander so we skipped it for this dish). You would usually add pressed garlic to the soya sauce for flavour but since we have to see other people the next day, we skipped the garlic.