How to make Seri Muka with Blue Butterfly Powder (Vegan)
Seri Muka (also known as Kuih Salat) literally means beautiful face in Malay. A two-layered steamed concoction of glutinous rice forming on the bottom and silky smooth pandan custard on top (hence the green colour). It's heady with the flavour of coconut milk and remains a Peranakan all-time favourite sweet kuih (the word "kuih" means Cake in Malay). Coconut milk is a key ingredient in making this kuih. It is used to impart a creamy taste when cooking the glutinous rice and making the custard layer.
In 2009 the Malaysian Department of National Heritage declared Seri Muka one of Malaysia's Top 100 heritage foods and drinks. Seri Muka is a dish that dates back to Peranakan* days (please refer to notes below and information from Nasi Kerabu by Jackie M in our earlier article).
OMG! You've just changed "the National Heritage dish" Lisa Lee Allerton! Look how lovely this Royal Blue Seri Muka - Yum Yum! And you've combined two kuehs - Seri Muka and Kueh Talam (more in a later Blog on Blue Kueh Talam). Lisa is an Entrepreneur Extraordinaire - lots of experience in Marketing although she likes to call herself "Jane of all Trades, Mistress of None" - for which we do not agree at all. Lisa resides in Sydney with her husband, Steve.
To keep to tradition, most Kueh Seri Muka makers would pound the Pandan leaves to extract its green colour & fragrance. For a twist Lisa decided to do a Blue Seri Muka using our Blue Butterfly Powder which saves her pounding on on the her mortar to squeeze some juice.
Here's the recipe - Enjoy!
25 grams tapioca flour
450 ml thick coconut milk
25 grams rice flour
25 grams of mung bean
1 tablespoon of sugar
½ tsp salt
Glutinous rice Topping 2 tbs cornflour 2 tsp rice flour 1 cup full cream milk ¾ cup sugar 1 tsp vanilla bean paste 270ml coconut cream
5 grams Blue Butterfly Powder
(OR to keep to tradition - 5 pieces of pandan leaves for the green colour)
METHOD Wash and soak rice for at least three hours or overnight. Drain and mix in coconut milk and salt. Steam for 30 minutes.
Let cool and rests for 10 minutes and than press the rice into a 8" pan square pan
Using a piece of plastic wrap, press rice down to compress slightly and form the base.
Combine all custard topping ingredients except for coconut cream. Stir over medium heat until very thick, whisking continuously. Add coconut milk and emulsify.
Add the Blue Butterfly Powder and stir well Spread custard topping onto compressed rice base. Steam for 15 minutes. Cool and slice into diamonds.
Serve with a pot of hot or warm Blue Herbal Tea and enjoy the moment.
Photos courtesy of Lisa Lee Allerton
If you have something new or an existing Blue Recipe that you would like share with us and for us feature you - please write in to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Note - Do not refrigerate unless you are willing to re-steam.
Let Royal Blue Seri Muka cool down totally before cutting
Best cut with a plastic knife
Otherwise, it will end up - jagged.
Traditional Seri Muka
Peranakan Chinese or Straits-born Chinese are the descendants of Chinese immigrants who came to the Malay archipelago including British Malaya (now Malaysia and Singapore, where they are also referred to as Baba-Nyonya) and Dutch East Indies (now Indonesia; where they're also referred as Kiau-Seng) between the 15th and 17th centuries.