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There Is Carrot In This Carrot Cake

After some epic kitchen fail moments, it is finally here. My interpretation of carrot cake. I couldn't get the rice cake right on my 1st attempt. It was not soft enuff. It hardened more during final sauteing. On my 2nd attempt, the plating was just plain awful. It was very messy to begin with. I was really the verge of giving up on this dish. At that exact moment, my brain hit a spark. The rest is history.

 


I decided to incorporate Alce Nero's organic black rice into the rice cake. I had fallen in love with black rice. And I know it will be a fantastic addition as it will add different layers of flavors to the rice cake. To be honest, the traditional rice cake is really bland. Hence I am not really a fan of Singapore's carrot cake. Most of the eateries will just buy ready-made rice cakes from factories. All they do is just stir fry the cakes with some eggs and add loads of MSG. The carrot cakes usually fall flat on flavors.

 

 

I find out that the only way to stack flavors is by getting the base right. The base is the rice cake. So you must be wondering, why is this called carrot cake. White radish is used in the rice cake. White radish in hokkien is "chai tow" which literally translate to carrot. So, "chai tow kueh" means carrot cake. I am also using different shades of carrot for my rice cake to add more colors and flavors, hence the name of this dish. Is this the best version of carrot cake I can offer? Yes, apparently. I will definitely try to make this dish better. For now, let's get started with the recipe.

 

Ingredients:

(Serve 4)

  • Rice Cake:

  • Alce Nero's Organic Black Rice Washed & Dried, 15g

  • Rice Flour, 135g

  • Glutinous Rice Flour, 25g

  • Vegetable Stock Room Temperature, 150ml

  • Miso Paste, 1 TSP

  • Different Shades of Carrots Shredded 40g

  • White Radish Shredded, 20g

  • Sea Salt, Pinch

  • Scallions Finely Chopped, For Garnishing

  • Plain Version:

  • Canola / Peanut / Vegetable Oil, 2 TBSP

  • Garlic Grated, 1 Clove

  • Preserved Radish, 1 TBSP

  • Eggs Light Beaten, 2

  • Sambal / Hot Sauce / Sriracha, 1 TSP Adjust To Preference

  • Sea Salt, Pinch

  • White Pepper, Pinch

  • Mushroom Powder, Pinch

  • Nori Flakes, Pinch

  • Dark Version:

  • Canola / Peanut / Vegetable Oil, 2 TBSP

  • Garlic Grated, 1 Clove

  • Preserved Radish, 1 TBSP

  • Eggs Light Beaten, 2

  • Blackstrap Molasses, 1 TBSP Adjust To Preference

  • Sea Salt, Pinch

  • White Pepper, Pinch

  • Mushroom Powder, Pinch

  • Nori Flakes, Pinch

Equipment:

  • Steamer

  • Cast Iron Skillet / Pan

  • Rice Miller / Spice Grinder

Directions:

  1. Prepare the rice cake.

  2. If you have a rice miller, mill all the rice until fine powder forms. Be sure to wash and dry them thoroughly.

  3. If not, add Alce Nero's black rice into a spice grinder.

  4. Blitz until fine powder forms.

  5. Transfer into a large bowl.

  6. Add the remaining 2 rice flour.

  7. Stir to combine well.

  8. Gradually, while stirring, add in the vegetable stock.

  9. Stir until well combine.

  10. You should get a wet cement consistency.

  11. Dissolve miso in 150ml of hot water.

  12. Gradually, while stirring, add in the miso stock.

  13. Stir until well combined.

  14. Now, you should get a smooth thick, but not runny, consistency.

  15. *Make sure no large lumps.*

  16. Add in the carrots, radish and salt.

  17. Mix until well combined.

  18. Transfer into a lightly greased heat proof bowl.

  19. In a skillet over medium heat, add water.

  20. Place the bowl of batter into the skillet.

  21. Stir until the mixture starts to thicken.

  22. Once it gets too difficult to stir.

  23. Remove from heat and smoothen the surface.

  24. Steam the batter in a steamer for about 10 to 15 mins or until harden.

  25. Remove from heat and set aside to cool completely.

  26. Once cooled, unmold the rice cake and finely dice into small cubes. Set aside.

  27. For the plain version.

  28. In a skillet over medium heat, add oil.

  29. Once the oil is heated up, add in the garlic and radish.

  30. Saute until aromatic.

  31. Add in a handful of the rice cake cubes.

  32. Saute until well combined and lightly browned and crisped on all sides.

  33. Form the rice cake cubes into a circle.

  34. In a small bowl, whisk eggs, sambal, salt, pepper, mushroom powder and nori flakes until well combined.

  35. Add the egg mixture into the skillet over the rice cake cubes.

  36. Cook until bottom is lightly browned.

  37. Flip the omelette onto a plate and slide back into the skillet.

  38. Cook the other side until lightly browned.

  39. Transfer onto serving plate and garnish with scallions.

  40. Serve immediately.

  41. For the dark version.

  42. In a skillet over medium heat, add oil.

  43. Once the oil is heated up, add in the garlic and radish.

  44. Saute until aromatic.

  45. Add in a handful of the rice cake cubes.

  46. Saute until well combined and lightly browned and crisped on all sides.

  47. Form the rice cake cubes into a circle.

  48. In a small bowl, whisk eggs, molasses, salt, pepper, mushroom powder and nori flakes until well combined.

  49. Add the egg mixture into the skillet over the rice cake cubes.

  50. Cook until bottom is lightly blackened, but not burnt. It is the molasses caramelizing.

  51. Flip the omelette onto a plate and slide back into the skillet.

  52. Cook the other side until lightly blackened, but not burnt.

  53. Transfer onto serving plate and garnish with scallions.

  54. Serve immediately.

  55. If you want the same as the plating.

  56. Preheat oven to 180 degrees celsius or 360 fahrenheit.

  57. Lined parchment paper onto a baking tray.

  58. Wash 2 carrots thoroughly.

  59. Trim off the roots and leaves.

  60. Rub the carrots with canola oil and grated garlic.

  61. Transfer onto the prepped baking tray.

  62. Wack into the oven and bake for 15 mins or until the carrots are fork tender.

  63. *If the garlic browned before the carrots are baked, remove the garlic and transfer into a small bowl. Do not discard.*

  64. Remove from oven and set aside.

  65. Divide the scallion into 2 parts, green and white.

  66. Blanch the green part in a pot of boiling water for 1 min.

  67. Strain and transfer into a blender.

  68. Add just enuff canola oil to get the blender blitzing.

  69. Blitz until smooth.

  70. Pour thru a fine strainer over a small bowl.

  71. Discard the residue. The scallion oil is done.

  72. For the white part, finely julienne into fine shreds. You can do this with a special peeler or a knife.

  73. Plunge the shreds into a bowl of ice water.

  74. It will curl up after a while.

  75. Spoon the scallion oil and move your spoon swiftly in a circular motion.

  76. Place the roasted the carrots onto the scallion oil.

  77. Using a cookie cutter, cut out 2 discs from the plain and dark version of carrot cakes.

  78. Transfer onto serving plate.

  79. Garnish with the curled white scallions.

  80. Spoon the roasted garlic bits and some more of the preserved radish onto the side.

  81. Serve immediately.

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