What's Cooking (in Yvonne's Kitchen)?

I've changed the name of this blog to What's Cooking (in Yvonne's Kitchen) because I will be getting a kitchen of my own very soon, it maybe small but will be able to produce more goodies to share with everyone!

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Kai Chai Paeng (鸡仔饼) Little Chicken Biscuits

makes about 60 crispy thin biscuits

Have you ever craved for a food so badly but cannot source it in the area you live in, so much so that you decided to take the matter into your own hands--to make it from scratch?  Well, I have.  In fact, ALL. THE. TIME.

And for that, the baking/cooking bug in me always gives myself the "excuse" to attempt the recipe for the first time, regardless whether it's a success or a total failure.  Thank God that most of the time, it turned out quite well.

The recipe calls for a long list of ingredients, but most of them are easily found in your pantry!

This time, I have decided to make kai chai paeng, a type of biscuit originally from Kampar, Ipoh, to fix that craving of mine.  So, I looked no further than my two gorgeous gourmande girlfriends, May and Karen, for inspiration.  As always, they never disappoint me by providing me with a recipe by Lily and I did some cross-referencing different recipes on Google (I know, OCD much?).  I realized that most of the recipes resemble the recipe posted by Amy Beh on Kuali.

I did some tweak the recipe, and here they are:
- the original recipe calls for ammonia but I didn't have it and this ingredient sounds too "chemically" (Yes, I am aware that a lot of food contains ammonia, but if I have the choice of NOT including it, why should I?)
- use organic ingredients such as flour, egg, salt and sesame seeds to make the biscuit wholesome
- cut the sugar level by 30% (I didn't do it for the first time, but I've gotten smarter)
- to make the biscuits vegetarian, I replaced chicken granules with mushroom seasoning, which is equally yummy!

Replacing the chicken granules with mushroom seasoning makes these biscuits vegetarian

It's a rather simple recipe and if you have a food processor, it will save at least 50% of the physically mixing and kneading.  The only time-consuming part is the shaping.  I shaped them into thin and crisp oval-shaped biscuits by shaping them in small balls and rolling them thinly.

Mixing ingredients A in a food processor (right) and whisking ingredients B in a mixing bowl (left) before combing the two.

For semi-chewy kai chai paeng, baking them for 10 minutes (top), if you prefer crispy texture, bake them for 12 minutes (bottom).  But keep an eye on them once you smell the aroma.  

This recipe will definitely be included in my Chinese New Year cookie repertoire and I hope you enjoy making and eating them as much as I do.  Bon appétit!

Ingredients A
300 g self-raising flour
70 g icing sugar
1/4 tsp sea salt
1 tsp freshly-ground pepper
1 tsp five spice powder (
1/2 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp stock granules (I used mushroom seasoning granules )
2 cloves garlic, minced
80 g white sesame seeds
70g candied winter melon strips (
冬瓜糖), finely chopped or easier done with a food processor

Ingredients B
1 large egg
1 tbsp malt or commonly known as glucose (
2 pieces red fermented tofu
(南腐), mashed
1 tbsp dark soy sauce (kicap manis)
100 ml sesame oil

1. Preheat the oven at 175⁰C.  Pulse all ingredients A in a food processor, pulse until all mixed.

2. In a mixing bowl, add all ingredients B, whisk until all mixture blended.

3. With the motor running on slow speed, pour ingredients B mixture slowly into the food processor until all ingredients combined (it feels a little greasy and sticky when you touch it).  Transfer the mixture into a large bowl and knead with hand until a dough is formed.  Let the dough rest for 10 minutes (no need to put in the fridge).

4. To shape the biscuits in rustically just like the original ones from Kampar, form small balls like the size of marbles and put them on parchment papers or silicone sheets, use a rolling pin or glass bottle to roll over the small dough balls, so they will be flattened to 1/8-inch thick.

5. Bake the biscuits 10 minutes (if you prefer a crisp on the edges but slightly chewy in the middle texture) or 12 minutes (if you like crispy and crunchy biscuits).

6. Cook the biscuits on a rack before serving and storing them in air-tight containers. 

Storing these biscuits in a mason jar with a cute ribbon would make a thoughtful gift.

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At 4:24 AM, Blogger loving heart said...

Hi Yvonne,Thank you for sharing greatly appreciated. God Bless you! May.

At 11:03 AM, Blogger CC said...

Both baking soda and powder are chemical too. Try ammonia next time, you'll be surprised how crispy the cookies are and they stay crispy longer too.
Actually its what they use in the old days before baking soda and powder existed.


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