Merdeka Open House 2010: Hakka Abacus Beads 算盘子

>> Sunday, August 29, 2010

This is the first time I am participating in this year Merdeka Open House hosted by Babe in the City. This year's theme happen to be Foods from Our Hearts. After thinking long about what kind of dish that is prepared by my family members, I finally came up with Hakka Abacus Beads.

This dish reminds me alot about my mum. However, ironically mum does not prepare this dish very often. My mum is a Hakka. A few years back, when I was in high school, I saw many bloggers attempted to make this traditional Hakka dish. And when I asked mum if she knows what is Hakka Abacus Beads, she told me she had not even heard of it before. (Haha. She claims she is a traditional Hakka though)

So, I was determined to make this special dish to let my mum try. When she first tried it, she was like "Ohhs, and Ahhs". She loved it instantly and asked me how to make this dish. So, the next day, we went to pasar pagi (morning market) and bought some taro again. Then, I thought her how to make this dish. We had a good time making them into round balls and "punching" a hole in the middle. And we made them into funny shapes, long, fat, thin, square, and may crazy shapes you can't imagine. It was fun. It was love, between me and my mum.

Ever since that, during festive season, mum always come to me and ask: "Can you give me the recipe to this dish?". I ended up giving her the recipe and taught her how to make it again. This happens all the time. Why? She can't remember the measurement. Mums, well, at least my mum, is a toss-and-throw-everything-into-the-pan-and-end-up-with-tasty-dish. She doesn't measure things, let alone remembering the exact weight of taro, tapioca flour and water. All these years, I have given her the same recipe over and over again. And both of us made this together again and again, yet still having lots of fun together in the kitchen.

Now that I am not by herside anymore, she still came to me that day on Skype and asked me "Can you give me the recipe to this dish?". I was smiling, but in my heart, I was rather sad because I am not there to teach her anymore. So I think it would be a good idea that I take picture of me doing it step-by-step. And the next time I Skype with her, I will teach her how to access my blog and learn from this post.

I miss you mum. And although I am not there to teach you how to make this again, I will always be here for you. And in case the next time you forget the recipe again, just yell out, and I will definitely teach you again. :) Thanks Mum. Thank you for this dish. It is truly the Food that reminds me of you. The Food that comes from My heart, to yours.

Hakka Abacus Beads Recipe 算盘子
(written in Chinese for my mum)

300克 芋头
150克 木薯粉
60毫升 滚水


1。 把芋头蒸熟。




babe_kl August 29, 2010 at 11:08 PM  

Hey Weng, this is my fave Hakka dish but I'm so lazy to make this cos too much work hehe

I'm so happy for your participation in this year's Merdeka Open House. Hope you could do so the next year too!

Weng August 30, 2010 at 7:06 AM  

Thank you babe_kl,

I will definitely do so next year. It is so interesting. Thanks for being a host :)

My Little Space August 30, 2010 at 12:10 PM  

You're missing home! Your Hakka Suan Pan Zi looks as awesome... I think must be as good as your mom's one! hehe.... Isn't it fun to make your home cook meal! I'm sure your mom is so proud of you. Have a great day.
Cheers, kristy

Little Tikes August 30, 2010 at 3:33 PM  

I'm sure your mom will feel touched by your post here.

By the way, the dish looks yummy. Would love to try it too one day!

Weng @ I heart My Bakes August 30, 2010 at 5:24 PM  

Kristy : Yea. I'm missing home. Mum went Ohh and Ahh when she saw the picture. Haha. Thanks! Yours look awesome too.

Little Tikes : Thanks. Yea, I think she was touched, but just didnt say it out loud. :) Go ahead and try it. It tastes absolutely gorgeous.

Pei-Lin@Dodol and Mochi August 30, 2010 at 11:52 PM  

Weng, you also contributed Hakka abacus beads for the Merdeka Open House too!! HAHA! Great minds think alike! Though I'm not a least bit of Hakka (I'm Cantonese on my dad's side and Teochew on my mom's side), I absolutely heart this Hakka classic! That was why I also contributed this to the event mah ... HAHA! A real 經典!! Yea wor, Ipoh area is predominantly Hakka also ... I'd love to have yours! Yours looks so good! But you use more 老抽, right? Yours is darker wor ...

Hey, I meant to get back to you sooner ... But well, I've been too busy with work. Thank you for the encouraging words! You know when I saw your comment the other day, I was SO elated! Thank you! Let's 加油!

Happy Merdeka Day to you! It's always nice to get to know of another fellow Malaysian who loves and is good at cooking and baking! Whoever that has you as his spouse will be so darn lucky!!!

Weng @ I heart My Bakes August 31, 2010 at 5:28 AM  

Pei-Lin : Yea, I used a bit of thick soy sauce for this dish. I like it to be slightly blackish. Haha. Maybe it's because I like my food to be brownish/blackish. Thanks for your encouraging words yea. We 加油 together okay? HAHAHAHA...

daphne August 31, 2010 at 7:48 PM  

awwww.. so sweet! U did so well in putting so much effort in this dish..and I think it turned out sooo well.. Great entry!! btw, i'm in Perth too...and guess what, background in psychology!! Great to see another fellow blogger here as well =)

My Little Space September 2, 2010 at 1:37 PM  

Weng, all you need to do is just copy the picture from my site and then paste it to your blog. thank the person and then pass it to some other blogger. Finally, write 10 things about yourself. Hopefully, this is clear enough. hehe...

otehlia cassidy September 3, 2010 at 7:28 PM  

I love taro root, they make dishes with it in Africa and it is so comforting!What a nice tribute to your mom. I am so curious, though about the sauce. Thanks for visiting my blog, and I am glad I found yours.

Ah Tze November 16, 2011 at 11:17 AM  

This is such a lovely dish that I'll eat when I see the food stall selling it. Your mum must had very good moment cooking and baking with you that she wants this recipe again and again. Thanks for sharing the recipe, I want to try it out too!

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I'm a Malaysian girl, from Ipoh who is currently in Perth, Western Australia pursuing her studies in Psychology. I find great comfort in baking and cooking, and enjoy sharing them with my family and friends. Started my baking passion when I was 14, and continuing to love every bit of it! Welcome to my world of flour, eggs and butter !

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