Recipe – Ji Dan Gao (Chinese Steamed Egg Cake)
I don’t usually post failures of my cakes, but I think this is an exception. I spent one of the Friday night making Steamed Egg Cake (鸡蛋糕) with my Grandpa.
This is something close to my heart as my late Grandma always make it for the family especially during festive season. After she left, nobody makes this at home anymore. And tonight, I picked up the courage to do this for the first time. It looks simple, but I guess the simplest things require the toughest skills.
When my Grandma is still around, she will always take a big wire mesh skimmer to beat the eggs. The process is very long. As a kid, sometimes I will help beat the eggs but after 3 minutes, I will complain hand pain lah, very tired lah etc etc. But I like to stand beside Grandma and see her beat the eggs.
When she finally let the batter to steam, we will be waiting for it to be ready, hoping it will “huat” (Chinese prefer to have this cake smile broadly as this the emblem of ” Bringing good fortune and usually Chinese like to present this cake for praying). After it is done, aunty and I will use a flower decorating tool, dip abit of red colouring and decorate our cake! Photo taken while we are celebrating one of the last Mother’s Day with Grandma. She left when I was 16.
Thanks to Little Teochew for sharing the Ji Dan Gao recipe, Grandpa and I had a great time recreating it!
– 220g eggs excluding weight of shells (about 4 large eggs)
– 210g caster sugar
– 230g cake flour or top flour (sifted 2 or 3 times)
– 6 tbsp F&N Orange (or any other soda)
1. Whisk the eggs till frothy, then start adding sugar a little by little, to ensure it is well-incorporated. Continue beating until the batter becomes very pale, thick and creamy. This takes time, and there is no shortcut. Meanwhile, heat up your wok, pot or steamer until you get a gentle boil. Do make sure it is large enough to fit the cake tin and has ample space for the batter to rise and the steam to circulate.
2. Fold in the flour in thirds, alternating with the soda, and ending with flour. Once there are no streaks of flour, stop.
3. To steam, either pour the mixture into a bamboo steamer lined with greaseproof paper or use a 6 or 7-inch lined baking tin. Pop it into the wok, pot or steamer – then cover – and steam on high for 30mins.
4. Once done, place the cake on a rack and allow to cool before slicing.
I didn’t succeed, because my cake didn’t huat, but the taste resembles what I had during my childhood days. And I guess my steamer is probably the cause because the height of the cover is very low and it almost touches my cake. In any way, the family is very pleased with to see this cake appearing on table again and it was gone less than a day! I will try it again!
Grandma, I miss you…