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!

    Cooking risotto

    Am on a roll! Cooked mushroom barley risotto for dinner and made roast chicken thighs for some meat to go with.

    The barley I used? The ones chinese mothers have used for generations for the familiar barley drink.

    All at the cost of RM0.60 per packet.

    Who needs arborio rice? Who? Suckers!

    # – 2 packets of barley for two. RM1.20 WTF!

    The most expensive ingredient was the fresh mushrooms. Think I’d use canned ones next time since I probably can’t tell the difference after a spot of sauteeing.

    # – One ladle of stock at a time and stir. One ladle at a time.

    Used this recipe for the risotto and this recipe for the chicken thighs.

    By the way, you must absolutely try the chicken recipe cause it was crazy good!! No marinade, just salt & pepper. I was shocked at how delicious it was.

    # – Mushroom barley risotto with roast chicken thigh.

    Happy cooking!

    Spicy beef biryani recipe.

    This is a recipe from Ben O’Donoghue and I was THRILLED with the results. I made a few changes, things like changing saffron to tumeric (too expensive), getting rid of mint leaves (couldn’t find any) and conveniently forgetting bay leaves (old age). Yet, the biryani was absolutely delicious!

    # – Made it for a family dinner.

    For the rice:

    • 300-500 grams of beef steak, thinly sliced
    • 70 grams of tomato puree
    • A pinch of tumeric powder
    • 50 ml of milk
    • 500 grams of basmati rice
    • 1 cup of coriander leaves, roughly chopped
    • A pinch of salt

    For the marinade:

    • 5 cm of ginger, peeled & grated
    • 10 garlic cloves
    • 3 long chillies, roughly chopped
    • 20 grams of papaya, peeled and roughly chopped
    • 2 tablespoons of cooking oil
    • Juice of 1 lemon
    • 1 tablepoon of tumeric powder

    For the spice mix:

    • 100ml of vegetable oil
    • 3 onions, thinly sliced
    • 2 teaspoons of cardomom pods, bruised with the back of a knife
    • 1 cinnamon quill, broken
    • 2 teaspoons of cloves

    # – First, dump all the ingredients for the marinade in a blender except for lemon juice and tumeric powder. Puree the mixture.

    # – Pour it out then add the lemon juice.

    # – Stir in the tumeric powder.

    # – Add in the sliced beef and stir to ensure the beef are evenly coated with the marinade. Set aside while you continue with other tasks.

    # – Prepare the milk in a jug and add the tumeric powder and a pinch of salt, let stand for about 20 minutes.

    # – In the meantime, boil the basmati rice in salted water for 6-8 minutes.

    # – Then drain the rice.

    # – Now, to start with making the spice mix. Fry up 2/3 of the thinly sliced onions till brown (confession: I over fried mine a bit :P). Set aside.

    # – Fry the remaining onions with the cardamoms, cloves and cinnamon quill.

    # – When the spices are fragrant, throw in the marinaded beef. Reserve the marinade.

    # – As soon as the beef are browned, pour in the tomato paste.

    # – Followed by the rest of the marinade reserved earlier. Stir to combine.

    # – Next, pour 1/3 of the drained rice over the meat mixture.

    # – Then throw on some coriander leaves.

    # – Cover with more rice and then a layer of the fried onions. Repeat until no rice’s left.

    # – Pour in the milk mixture all over the rice.

    # – Cover and stick in a preheated oven at 170 degrees celcius to bake for 15 minutes. This will allow the marinade at the bottom to steam the rice and flavouring it at the same time :D

    # – Spicy beef biryani, DONE!

    # – Stir it up before serving…

    # – Delicious, fluffy biryani.

    I made a pot of vegetable curry to go with it. Superb!

    Before this, I’ve always wondered how people make good biryani rice, with the rice so fluffy and not sticking together in clumps. The thought of screwing the dish up put me off from attempting it.

    I’m glad I got over the fear and made this because the BF and I LOVE biryani and now that I understand the basics of cooking basmati rice, I can experiment with more flavours in the future.