Sunday, November 26, 2006

Kuih Keria (Sweet Potato Wheels)

Dedicated to Kimmi.

Kuih (coo-eh), is basically any small, most often than not sweet but sometimes savoury dish that Malaysians eat as a snack. Most kuihs are usually by design portioned to a few bites' size, therefore you would find them balled or parcelled in some way.
Kuih Keria (coo-eh curr-ree-year) is one such example. It is made from sweet potatoes, shaped into small wheels and then fried. The traditional version of Kuih Keria is put into a thick syrup that would create an extremely sweet flaky crust when cooled, but for easy-peasiness reasons, I just coat mine in castor sugar. My kids call them "mini doughnuts".

Kuih Keria

500 grams sweet potatoes (boiled till tender, peeled then mashed)
1 egg (beaten)
100 grams flour (all-purpose will do fine)
a pinch of salt
a teaspoon of ground cinnamon (optional)

Mix mashed sweet potatoes with eggs and salt then gradually add in the flour till the dough is well mixed. Flour your hands properly, take a little bit of dough and form into a small ball. Flatten the ball and use your thumb and index finger to poke a hole through the ball to form a wheel. Deep fry the wheels in medium hot oil till golden brown. Drain and let cool on a paper towel before tossing them in sugar before serving.

I find that mixing the dough with a fork works better than using a spoon. I use a spoon to measure the amount of dough to ball up, just so that I get a roughly consistent size every time. I also keep a bowl of flour nearby so that I can keep re-flouring my hands, since the dough can be quite sticky (and it's very soft too). After forming the ball into a wheel, I lay it out on a wax paper in a baking sheet, and continue forming wheels till I finish up the whole dough. You can seperate layers of wheels using another piece of wax paper. This ensures that your wheels don't stick to each other.
I usually fry the wheels till dark brown rather than a golden brown, because I like my kuih keria to be slightly crunchy on the outside. If you don't like it crunchy, frying it till it is golden brown is fine, coz that is good enough to cook the flour and eggs.
I coat the wheels by putting the castor sugar (or icing sugar) in a ziploc bag (or any plastic bag, or even a tupperware) then putting in a few wheels at a time, then shaking them about. This reduces spills, and is very convenient for when I am transporting the kuih somewhere and not eating it right away.

So there you go, the recipe and all the tips and tricks I know about how to make a good Kuih Keria.
If you do try it out and it turns out good, do tell me about it!

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