Little Bowl Cake (Seow Wor Tou)

Ming made two desserts in the South Arm Community Kitchen after Andrea finished with her German dishes. The first dessert is Little Bowl Cake or Seow Wor Tou in Mandarin.


The Little Bowl Cake is not supposed to look like this. But when Ming made this cake, she might have added too much water and she does not have enough corn flour to adjust the consistency of the dough. The dough was too soft to mold into a little bowl. I will illustrate how it should be made in the instruction section.


  • 300g corn flour
  • 100g soy flour
  • 100g castor sugar (was substituted with granulated sugar)
  • 2g baking powder (Ming used Chinese baking powder, not sure if it’s different from regular baking powder)
  • warm water


Click on Read More for the instructions.


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Six Minute Chocolate Cake

The Richmond Cooking Club resumed its activities in September 2008, just like schools heading off for a new school year. I’ll start off the recipe series with the South Arm Seniors’ Cooking Club. The Seniors’ Cooking Club made three dishes for the first meeting.


The dishes were Six Minute Chocolate Cake, Chicken Paprika and Quiona and Black Bean Salad.


This season, the Seniors’ Cooking Club is very privileged to have custom made aprons to be used in the kitchen.


The aprons were sewed by Karen and the embroidery was sewed by Karen’s daughter.


As an appreciation, Karen was presented with a potted plant from Stella, the South Arm Seniors’ coordinator.


For the start of a new season, Stella and Minoo (the coordinator of all the Richmond Community Kitchens) handed out some feed back sheets for the participants to comment on their views and also to get ideas of what the seniors would like to learn in the kitchen.

For those Richmondites who are interested to join any of the Richmond community kitchens, please contact Minoo at 778-885-5165 or email her at It’s a great place to learn and to share and make new friends.

Please click on the link below for the recipe of the Six Minute Chocolate Cake.


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Steamed Pandan Cake

One of chowtimes reader asked for the recipe of steamed pandan cake and I decided to try to make some adjustments to the Chinese Sponge Cake recipe to incorporate the pandan flavour.


The steamed pandan cake smells great and Arkensen commented that it smells like the Layer Cake which also has pandan element in it.

The only thing is that the bottom part of the cake is more densed than the top part. Do you have any idea why?

Here is the ingredients adjustment I made to the Chinese Sponge Cake:

  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup flour (substituted with 1 cup less 2 tablespoons flour plus 2 tablespoons of milk powder)
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract (substitute with pandan essence)
  • 1/2 cup evaporated milk (substituted with pandan juice)
  • 4 tablespoons butter or margarine, melted


The pandan leaves (also known as screwpine leaves) can be found in Filipino stores. I got mine from Great One Supermarket in Richmond. I’m sure you can find it in Chinatown too. (more…)

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Layer Cake

In Malaysia, this is called 9 layers cake (Kuih Lapis) as it should have 9 alternate white and pink layers. This cake is very common in the morning or night market.


Each layer of the layer cake is separable and that’s how we eat it, layer by layer. This recipe is from my friend Jessica. I have another recipe which turned out too soft. Perhaps it’s the flour that caused it. I used all-purpose flour as the recipe only says flour. Jessica’s recipe uses rice flour instead.


White layer:

  • 1/2 cup rice flour
  • 3 to 3 1/2 tablespoons tapioca flour
  • 200ml rooster brand coconut milk (which is more liquidy)
  • 1/2 cup + 3 tablespoons castor sugar
  • 100ml water

Red layer:

  • 1/2 cup rice flour
  • 3 to 3 1/2 tablespoons tapioca flour
  • remaining of the coconut milk from a 398ml can
  • 100ml pandan flavour water
  • red food coloring



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Steamed Mah Lai Ko

After my blog about the failed Mah Lai Ko, my friend, Angie shared with me this tested recipe. Angie loves to cook and I’m sure her recipe works.

I’m quite puzzled with the origin of Mah Lai Ko which has a name which indicates Malay Cake but yet, this is a popular dim sum item in Hong Kong Dim Sum restaurant. Can anyone confirm the origin of the Mah Lai Ko?


The Ma Lai Ko turned out soft and airy. It stays soft even the next day. It is not too sweet and has a great caramel flavour to it. This is a sure keeper. Angie, thank you for sharing the recipe.


  • 180g (about 3/4 cup) granulated sugar
  • 110ml water
  • 75g (about 5 tablespoons) margarine, melted
  • 75ml milk
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 160g (about 1 cup + 2 tablespoons) all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda


Click on the link below for the instructions.


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Ma Lai Ko

I have been looking for a proven recipe for Ma Lai Ko but not successful until now. This is another Ma Lai Ko recipe I found from a blog by…

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Light Carrot Cake

This version of Light Carrot Cake is taken from Cook’s Illustrated, November 2006. Carrot cake is often thought of as a healthy alternative to other cakes but names can be deceiving. The problem is although carrot cake sounds healthy for its use of vegetable oil in place of butter and use of carrots as a natural sweetener, most versions of carrot cake tip the scales at 500 calories and 31 grams of fat per slice.

This Light Carrot Cake has the natural sweetness of the carrots and has reduced amount of oil and egg. In order to keep the cake light, the eggs, sugar and oil mixtures is whipped to incorporate air in it. This keeps the cake from being too dense.


This Light Carrot Cake is moist and rich without being soggy and greasy from an overabundance of fat.


  • vegetable cooking spray
  • 2 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon table salt
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 pound carrots (about 6 medium), peeled and grated (about 3 cups)

Click on the link below for the instructions.


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Classic Carrot Cake

Karen demonstrated two carrot cake recipes upon Rowena’s request If I remembered correctly. The first cake is a Classisc Carrot Cake which was popularized in the 70s. It is an era where people started to reduce the intake of meat and encourage intake of vegetables, grains and fruits. A book called “Diet for a small planet” from the 70s introduced combinations of plant proteins to make a complete protein diet.


The Classic Carrot Cake is a very rich carrot cake with lots of ingredients like crushed pineapple, flaked coconut and walnuts.


  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon allspice
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 cups white sugar
  • 2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 1/4 cups vegetable oil (can be reduced to 1 cup)
  • 2 cups grated carrots
  • 1 (20 ounce) can crushed pineapple, drained
  • 1/2 cup sweetened flaked coconut
  • 1 cup chopped nuts or pumpkin seeds
  • 1 cup raisins


Click on the link below for the instructions.


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Wacky Cake

Once again, Jean demonstrated a few recipes in the Gilmore Park Church Community Kitchen. Jean was a good demonstrator as she will test the recipes which she has not try before a day before the meeting day to ensure that all things go well.

For this meeting, Jean made a Wacky Cake, some Whipped Shortbread Cookies, a Puffed Wheat Cake and Devil Eggs. All these were accomplished in two hours.


The Wacky Cake is a classic recipe from the depression era because of the rationing of butter and eggs. It is a cake without egg, milk or nut. People with allergies to such ingredients can still enjoy a piece of cake.

The name Wacky Cake probably came from the various cakes that you can make with this recipe by substituting some of the ingredients. Jean made a Spice Wacky Cake in the kitchen. She also made a Chocolate Wacky Cake the day before by substituting the 1 tablespoon of pumpkin spice with 3 tablespoons of cocoa powder. You can also make this into a vanilla cake by omitting the spice and double the amount of vanilla. To make an Orange Wacky Cake, omit the spice and vinegar and substitute the water with orange juice. For a Lemon Wacky Cake, omit the spice and substitute the vinegar with lemon juice and add a teaspoon of lemon extract. No wonder it is called Wacky Cake.


  • 1 1/2 cup flour
  • 1 tablespoon pumpkin spice
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon vinegar
  • 5 tablespoons oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 cup water


Click on the link below for the instructions.


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