Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for the ‘poh piah/popia’ Category

These days, we’re most likely to buy our sweet flour sauce, bee cheo, ready-made from the shops. As an essential ingredient for poh piah, my grandmother would always insist on getting Buddha brand, which isn’t that easily available in all supermarkets – try the wet market provision store.

Anyway to make your own bee cheo from scratch:
(NB: we tend to refer to coconut sugar more commonly as gula melaka, also known as palm sugar.)

Bee Cheo

Do check out my other poh piah entries here.

Advertisements

Read Full Post »

The ingredients for filling and egg skin one more time! However, this time there are finally instructions on how to prepare the filling.

Notes:
– the pork is specifically ‘sam chang’, the pork with fatty layers which make it tender and juicy :),
– ‘tau cheong’ (Cantonese) is used in the list of ingredients here, but in the other ingredients lists posted previously as well as in the instructions here, the Hokkien version, ‘tau cheow’ is used.

My grandmother’s tip on preparing the filling: grated bangkwang is too fine, it doesn’t give the same ‘bite’ as hand-chopped bangkwang. So no modern shortcuts if you want to get that ‘traditional’ taste :)!

See my last entry on the importance of duck’s eggs (as opposed to chicken’s eggs). Do check out my other poh piah entries here.
Popia 4A

Popia 4B

Read Full Post »

Finally, some instructions making poh piah egg skin!

Here the ingredients are more clearly spelt out – half cornflour and half ‘starch’ which is ‘tai she fun’ in Cantonese and ‘tua choo hoon’ in Hokkien. Having double-checked the Cantonese word with various people, I can safely say that ‘starch’ here means tapioca flour.

It’s important to remember to add the water a bit at a time and gauge if it’s enough before adding any more. From my own experience, it should be the consistency of pancake batter, just liquid enough to swirl round the pan very quickly.

Note that the eggs are specifically duck’s eggs. Not easy to get these days, but my grandmother told me they had a special taste, which also made char kway teow in those days especially delicious. An important detail to note if you wish to recreate that ‘authentic’ flavour.

Don’t forget to check out my other poh piah entries here.

Popia Egg Wrapping

Read Full Post »

Another page of poh piah quantities – ingredients for the filling as well as to make the egg skin. It looks like this page of notes has been revised, edited and added to several times over the years, and most likely 1994 was the most recent one – 32 years after the notes featured in my last poh piah posting. (Do check out my other poh piah entries here.)

Some indications of the changing times are:
1) different writing instruments: a blue pencil, blue fountain pen ink, blue ballpoint pen and blue felt-tip pen (must have been Schwan! the type my grandfather loved to use and stocked up the home with!).
2) differing measurement systems: katis and pounds put next to kilograms here.

Note the useful little table of equivalents for pieces of poh piah skin in pounds and katis.

I think “3 D. eggs” means “3 duck’s eggs”. See further comments here.

As what for ‘starch’ refers to, it’s not cornflour – often known as ‘cornstarch’ – which is listed as a separate ingredient. Oddly enough, in my first poh piah egg skin posting, I’ve written wheat flour and tapioca flour (where’s the cornflour?) [NB 19/5/07: just spoke to my grandmother’s friend, who is named elsewhere in the notebook the person as behind the wheat+tapioca flour recipe. She’s an amazing nonya cook of the ‘agak-agak‘ tradition, and confirms that 2 parts wheat flour + 1 part tapioca flour is what she uses.] In the second poh piah posting, I had ‘starch’ and ‘flour’! Perhaps the answer is: cornstarch and tapioca flour?? (I’ve just tried to check it up, but there’s nothing in Mrs Lee Chin Koon’s cookbook (the original 1974 version of the ‘New Mrs Lee’s Cookbook‘), nor any of the other nonya cookbooks I have.) [NB: figured it out, see my answer here.]

Once again, no instructions! But don’t despair, there are many more pages on poh piah which I will share with you in the coming days (^_^).

Popia 3

Read Full Post »

After that wonderful Poh Piah Egg Skin making photo, of course, we’ll have a series of Poh Piah notes to follow. Don’t forget, the very first recipe I posted here was my grandmother’s Poh Piah notes from the 1990s :).

No instructions here, just quantities of ingredients for Poh Pia(h)/popia filling. If I interpret the notes correctly, this would have been enough to feed our own family for lunch & dinner, as well as family friends, ‘Choa family’ for dinner, and in December 1962, all this would have cost $10.

Measurements in tahils, katis and pounds.

Short forms and ingredients:
B. kwang = bangkuang
B. cheow = bee cheo / sweet flour sauce
Wanswee = coriander leaf

Interesting spelling variations on the Chinese words :).

Don’t forget to check out my other poh piah entries here.

Popia 1

Read Full Post »

I just came across this photo of my paternal great-grandmother (the original source of the Nonya recipes in this collection) and her daughter, my Koh Poh Florence, painstakingly making poh piah egg skins over charcoal stoves, c.1953. Note the stack of completed skins piled up on the crate in between the two ladies. An upside-down wicker basket is used to cool each skin before it’s placed in the main pile – my grandmother taught me to do this too, only we used a plastic basket instead.

I don’t have any other family photos like this so am overjoyed by this find :).

Do check out my other poh piah entries here.

Making Poh Piah Skin

Read Full Post »

Poh Piah is one of my absolute favourite dishes. I grew up eating it with springy egg skin, instead of the papery white wrapper. It’s hard to find egg skins these days. Grandma taught me to make the egg skins and when I was in my teens (a very long time ago!) I got to practise on the few occasions we held poh piah parties at home. It takes a lot of patience standing around the hot stove, making them one by one in a pan just like you would crepes. The thinner the skin, the better. These days, I think no one can beat my Aunty Maggie’s skilled hand at paper thin egg skins :).

Don’t forget to check out my other poh piah entries here.

*********
[Typed up from 1990s notebook]

EGG SKIN

Makes 30-40 pieces

350g wheat flour
250g tapioca flour
6 rice bowls warm water
10 eggs – stir with 2 tsp salt and sieve
2 tbs oil

Mix flour by hand in basin adding warm water gradually.
Alternately add in eggs which have been sieved.
When well mixed, add in 2 tbs oil.

FILLING

3 kgs bangkuang
10 pieces taukwa
800g pork – streaky / no skin
500g small prawns
2 tbs taucheo – fry
Garlic – fry

OTHER INGREDIENTS

3 eggs beat up and fry into pancake, then shred
500g pounded chillies –
500g Lettuce
Garlic (raw)
Taugay/ beansprouts
3 cucumbers (shredded)
Sweet sauce (Buddha brand)
+ others according to taste

Read Full Post »