High Demand For Traditionally Made Kuih Bakul This CNY

Last update: 09/02/2018

BALIK PULAU, Feb 9 (Bernama) -- For the Chinese community, 'kuih bakul' or nian gao, especially the traditionally made one, is a must-have delicacy for the Chinese New Year celebration.

Kuih bakul maker, Thor Ge Seong, 60, from Kampung Pantai Acheh, said the traditionally made kuih bakul wrapped in banana leaf was still in high demand from the Chinese community, compared to that made the modern way and sold in the supermarkets.

Over the past two generations, Thor said his family members would gather annually, two weeks before the Chinese New Year celebration to make the sweet and sticky glutinous rice cakes.

"I learned how to make the cake from my grandmother since I was in the primary school. With the help of my wife, children and son-in-law, we could produce nearly 120 kuih bakul per day," he told Bernama.

He used about 30 kg of glutinous rice which would be mixed with sugar and water before being poured into moulds lined with banana leaves.

"To get a shiny and reddish kuih bakul, it must be steamed for 16 hours using wood fire.

"To avoid untoward incident, such as the kuih bakul staying uncooked, an old practice is to tie shreds of orange peels and a knife together in a bunch and hang it over the cover of the kuih bakul steamer," Thor said.

Meanwhile, his son-in-law Ch'ng Boon Aun, 28, said the kuih bakul produced by the family had seven different sizes and sold at RM19 per kg at the markets around the area.