How to make chinese radish cake or turnip cake (lor bak gou)

I don’t know if I’m getting older or what, but am a lot more interested in making traditional chinese dishes nowadays. I hope Liam will grow up knowing and liking food from my part of his heritage.

I love radish cakes or turnip cakes or lor bak gou , especially the fried ones. I always order the dish whenever I eat at dimsum restaurants.

However, I’ve never made one, I don’t really know why. Maybe cause it’s easy to buy them?

Till I found this recipe from Mummy Tong, a Dayrean I follow. After reading her post, I was determined to make it.

I took some liberties with the amount of salt and also omitted one ingredient as I couldn’t find it. Also, this recipe is enough for TWO 8″ x 8″ tins. That’s too much for two people but it didn’t occur to me till much later lol.



  • 2 pieces or 100 gms Lap yok or Chinese bacon of long chinese waxed sausages (lapcheong), soaked in hot water and diced

  • 100 gm of lapyok or Chinese bacon (I didn’t use this as I couldn’t find it), diced

  • 30 gm of dried prawns, washed and drained

  • 5 small onions, diced

  • A handful of spring onions, chopped

  • About 1 kilo of radish, peeled and grated
  • (B)

  • 400 gm or rice flour

  • 2 tbsp of cornstarch

  • 600 ml of water
  • (C)

  • 2 tsp of salt (original recipe only called for 1 tsp)

  • 1/2 tsp of white pepper powder

  • 1 tsp of white fine sugar

  • 1 tbsp of sesame oil

  • 700 ml of water
  • (D) For garnish

  • Chopped spring onions

  • Fried shallots
  • #1 – Prepare ingredients (A).

    #2 – Still preparing ingredients (A), this is the grated radish.

    #3 – Prepare ingredients (B).

    #4 – Prepare ingredients (C).

    #5 – Fry the onions, dried prawns and chinese sausages in a dash of oil till fragrant.

    #6 – Add the grated radish and cook it down for a couple of minutes.

    #7 – Now add (C) to the mixture and stir.

    #8 – Followed by (B). Stir well.

    #9 – On low heat, keep on stirring till the mixture become sticky and lumpy. This process is quite fast.

    #10 – Now add the chopped spring onions and mix in.

    #11 – Scoop mixture into an oiled tin and cover with aluminium foil. Steam on medium heat for 45 minutes.

    #12 – Chinese radish cakes, DONE! Sprinkle with (D).

    #13 – Nice eaten steamed (dang good with a dollop of sriracha) but you can cut them out into cubes and fry them up with some chinese salted vegetable (choi bou) and bean sprouts too, which is what I am going to do for lunch today :D

    By the way, buy this radish…not the tiny red ones ya. Grate till you die hah!

    Thank you Mummy Tong for such a delicious recipe!

    A few things I cooked in the past months.

    I am consciously trying not to write about babies and hormones. So I am going to blog about food instead.


    A while ago, I attempted to make Seremban beef noodle, one of my favourite things to eat pre-preggers.

    Seremban beef noodle is quite different from KL’s. The former is lighter and has a variety of textures while the latter is richer and more punchy in flavours.

    It was easier to cook than I initially thought, and the recipe I used was from this lovely blog.

    # – My first Seremban beef noodle attempt.

    I used Korean udon noodles, which were a tad too stodgy for my taste, so stick to chinese rice noodles!

    I have since developed a disdain for innards of any kind, so I probably won’t make this dish until after the baby has arrived.


    Another thing I really loved pre-preggers was salt beef. The only place I know that serves good salt beef is Nutmeg at Bangsar Village 2.

    Salt beef is just a cheap cut of beef that has been cured and then boiled, so instead of paying extra I decided that I should make them myself.

    The recipe I used is from The Telegraph.

    # – Cure brisket in spiced brine.

    # – After 7 days…

    # – Poach for 3 hours until tender.

    # – Salf beef, DONE!

    We ate it with potatoes and Dijon mustard. Well, must say I was a little underwhelmed despite the amount of effort put in to make the dish.

    So, I think I will stick to going to Nutmeg (after baby comes cause the idea of eating salf beef right now makes me want to hurl), hehehe.


    I friggin loveeeeeeeee hummus. I could eat it everyday. It’s quite a pity that hummus is not a more common sight at supermarkets here.

    Fortunately, it’s very easy to make hummus, if you cheated….

    The traditional way of making hummus is complicated, you have to pre-soak and grind the chickpeas, grind sesame seeds till they become paste, boil olive oil till it’s scalding hot etc etc but the angmoh way of doing it is very easy…just blitz with a food processor. Don’t even need cooking.

    The recipe I used is from BBC.

    # – Stick canned chickpeas, tahini (sesame paste), crushed garlic, lemon juice, ground cumin, olive oil, salt and water into the food processor.

    # – Blitz and season if needed.

    # – Serve with flat bread….so healthy and easy.

    Use it like a bread spread too in sandwiches..healthier than butter. Yummy!


    I had leftover pears, so I made a pear cake. I used a recipe from this blog, and it’s easily one of the easiest things I’ve ever baked.

    Looks quite beautiful too I must say. The sponge was light and fluffy, the pears were soft and chewy. Yums.

    # – Italian pear cake.

    # – Served with vanilla ice cream.


    Lastly, I made Gordon Ramsay’s pork neck curry again. I used shoulder loin (funnily, they are also called butt) and it worked very well.

    Instead of mango salsa, I made apple salsa because I forgot to buy mangoes and I had loads of apples in the fridge. They worked well…just cubed apples, halved tomato cherries, lemon juice, salt & pepper and a handful of pea sprouts.

    # – Yummy yum yum….served with rice.


    That’s all, kthxbai.

    What I cooked for Winter Solstice dinner celebration 2013

    My family decided to celebrate Winter Solstice earlier this year because of its proximity to Christmas. I was in charge of cooking, while hubs was in charge of cleaning the house.

    I made a 9-course dinner.


    For appetiser, I made a cold dish called Chicken Crystal Jelly, which is an aspic. I added blanched prawns and baby corns to make it look more pretty. To make this was very simple, simmer 3 chicken thighs in seasoned boiling water for about 30 minutes, like making chicken soup. Skim the gunk off the surface of the soup while it’s simmering, this will help make the stock clearer. After 30 minutes, remove cooked chicken thighs from soup, let cool and debone. As for the stock, strain it (I used those paper made specially for straining oil, bought from Daiso) to achieve an even clearer appearance. While the soup is still hot, mix in gelatine or agar-agar according to instructions.

    Arrange chicken meat, prawns and baby corn in the jelly mold, then pour in the stock and chill in the fridge overnight or at least 5 hours. To unmold the jelly, place the mold in hot water for a few minutes, put a plate over the mold, then turn it upside down…the jelly should pop out effortlessly.

    # – 1. Chicken Crystal Jelly.


    Second dish was steamed prawns with egg white and wine. The easiest of the lot. Arrange prawns on a plate, plate ginger slices and spring onions on top. Mix 2 tablespoons of ShiaoXing rice wine and 1 tablespoon of soya sauce then pour it over the prawns. Steam on high heat for 4 minutes and just before you turn off the fire, pour in 3 egg whites all over. Voila, done.

    # – 2. Steamed prawns with wine and egg white.


    Easy stir-fry vegetable medley. Dump everything into oiled wok and flip em around till everything’s cooked.

    # – 3. Sauteed vegetables.


    Poached chicken. Stick chicken into boiling water for 30-40 minutes, take it out and them brush skin with sesame oil (3 tablespoon) and salt mixture (1 teaspoon). Let cool for a couple of hours then chop it up and serve. I also used the stock from boiling chicken as a base to my soup.

    # – 4. Pak Cham Kai in cantonese.


    Dry bak kut teh. The BEST of the lot. Basically make stock with store-bought bakkutteh soup spice. Boil a head of garlic, pork belly, spare ribs and porn neck in the soup for 30-40 minutes. After that fry 10 pieces of dried chillies, soaked dried squid and chopped up bird’s eye chillies in oil till fragrant, make sure in a wok or a wide saucepan. Remove the meats and garlic from soup and add to the frying. Add a dash of dark soya sauce and a dash of oyster sauce. Then, ladle the BKT soup in and simmer for 30 minutes or until the soup thickens to a consistency of your liking. Chopped up ladies fingers and throw it in a minute before you turn off the flame. I think I will start making this pretty regularly…

    # – 5. Dry BKT.


    Suan pan zhi or hakkan yam abacus. The last time I made this dish was back in 2008, when our kitchen was basically a little corner in the apartment with the floor as the work area. This year, making this dish was a lot easier as I am better equipped. The hand mixer was very useful, so I didn’t have to stick my hand into hot yam to knead it hehe. This time I added sliced tofu and slices of chillies too.

    # – 6. Hakkan Yam Abacus.


    Easy pan-fried threadfin steaks, just finished with a dash of soya sauce.

    # – 7. Pan-fried kurau/threadfin fish steaks.


    Soup base was stock from cooking the poached chicken. Added handful of boxthorn berries, handful of red dates, handful of peanuts, a few pieces of pork neck and chopped arrowhead tubers. Boiled for an hour, yummy yumyum.

    # – 8. Arrowhead and peanut soup.


    Of course, glutinous rice balls is a must for Winter Solstice dinner. These are homemade with gula melaka and peanut butter fillings. Click here to learn how to make tong yuen my way. Broth was made by boiling gula melaka, few slices of ginger and a handful of red dates.

    # – 9. Tong Yuens.


    Of course I made too much food. What’s new? Luckily my youngest brother and mom were willing to take the leftovers.