Commonly served as a dessert or a delicacy during the Straits Chinese weddings, this kuih is made of glutinous rice steamed in coconut milk, compacted into a wooden frame and then, cut into desired shapes. The vibrant blue in certain parts of the glutinous rice enhances the beauty of this kuih. It is also known as “Pulut Tai Tai” for its elegant outlook. Tai Tai refers to a rich man’s wife who enjoys a life of leisure. The contrasting colour of the coconut jam (kaya) together with the vibrant blue and white of the glutinous rice makes it delightful and pleasing to the eyes of the beholder.
It tastes equally good with either the pandan-flavoured or the usual brown kaya. The slight tinge of saltiness from the glutinous rice coupled with the sweetness of the kaya makes this kuih a delight to savour.
I had a chance to introduce this delicious kuih to the locals at a German market. I must admit it was very interesting watching their reactions. Many were very skeptical as they were afraid to try what they thought was wasabi on glutinous rice nor could they fathom how wasabi could be sweet! Furthermore, the eye-catching blue colour was definitely new and strange to them. However, upon trying the kuih after some persuasion and reassurance, several of them even came back for seconds! That was encouraging indeed.
Seriously, it is really tough not to like this kuih once you have sampled it. Truly irresistible, if you ask me.
Glutinous Rice with Coconut Jam is also known as: Pulut Tai TaiPulut Tekan
Soak dried butterfly pea flower in hot water to extract the colour. Remove flowers from the liquid. Soak 250g of glutinous rice in the blue coloured water and the rest of the glutinous rice in plain water overnight.
Place banana leaves on a pan. Put soaked glutinous rice (without water) into the pan and add in 3/4 amount of the coconut milk. Steam glutinous rice together with 2 pieces of knotted pandan leaves for 20 minutes. Then, add the remaining coconut milk to the glutinous rice. Steam for a further 20 minutes or until glutinous rice is cooked.
Mix the white and blue glutinous rice to create the marbled effect. Then, compact glutinous rice to prevent it from falling apart. Store the compacted glutinous rice in a cool area. Cut into desired shape and have it with kaya. Pulut Tai Tai can be kept for a couple of days if stored in the refrigerator. Before consuming, steam or heat the glutinous rice in a preheated oven (70 degrees Celsius) for 10 minutes to soften it.