Sunday, October 09, 2005

Taro Cake - Woo Tau Koh

Homemade is always so much better as the ones bought for breakfast or tea are often inferior in taste. Years ago there was a lady who sells the kind that i like best in Taman Selera, Old Town, Petaling Jaya. I have sort of replicated the recipe to the best i think it should be. This cake aka koh has many variations and the toppings too have no limitiations. I have eaten a version without toppings but it is served with a minced meat sauce. There is one which cooked black eye peas is added and that is quite pleasant as the peas behave the same as a mashed taro. Some of the toppings are lap yoke, dried prawns, peanuts, choy poh, fried shallots, fresh red chillies and chopped spring onions and i like only dried prawns, fried shallots and spring onions. Would love to have fresh red chillies, only i can get them.

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250g yam, diced and coat with 1 tsp 5 spice powder
1 cup water

(B) Mix together and sieve:

125g rice flour
20g tapioca flour
1 cup water
1/4 tsp potassium carbonate & sodium bi-carbonate solution(optional)
150 g yam, sliced thin, steam then mashed


1 tbsp chicken stock granules
1 tsp soya sauce
1 tsp salt
1 tsp sesame oil
Dash of pepper
1 tsp sugar

For garnishing:

100 dried prawns, soaked and chopped coarsely - use the food processor
4 shallots, sliced and mix with 1 tsp oil, microwave on high until crispy
2 stalks spring onions, chopped
2 red chillies, chopped

Chilli sauce :

10 red chillies, (chop or blend in the food processor)
2 tbsp tomato ketchup
1 tbsp sugar
2 tsp salt
2 tbsp lemon/lime juice (can be substitue with vinegar)


Heat 4 tbsp oil and saute dried prawns till fragrant. Remove 3/4 and set aside for garnishing.

Add 2 tbsp oil to the remaining oil in the wok, add diced yam and stir fry well. Mix in water and bring to a boil.

Add in (B) and seasoning and cook till batter is fairly thick.

Pour thick batter into a well-greased 20 to 22cm round tray.

Steam till kuih is set and cooked through. Spread the garnishing on top and press lightly. Leave aside to cool.

Serve yam cake with chilli sauce.



Rabbit Sim said...

My favourite kuih! I have recipe in Agnes Chang's book but your's look so much better and more to my taste. My next kuih project definitely....

Anonymous said...

Lily, thank you for sharing all these home yummies with us. If I were living overseas, I would kiss u!! :) Kirsten

FooDcrazEE said...

delish! delish! delicious !

Donlung said...

Lily ah ! Just when I managed to get thru 1 week of diet. Now you make me dream of woon chai koh as well.
- Don

Unknown said...


woon chai koh coming up soon

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the great recipe, but I do have an advice for you. You should totally take out lye water from your recipe because it's quite dangerous to commsume this product. I was looking up lye water and this is what i found:

Unknown said...


thanks for link. I have posted this link for discussion in a food forum.

thanks again

Anonymous said...

Thanks Lily for sharing all your recipes. Made Yam Cake twice and was really delicious. Have been visiting your blog for all your new recipes. Warmest regard may

Unknown said...


you are most welcome.

will be making taro cake with some added secret.

hope to see you on saturday next

Anonymous said...

I cooked my first Taro Cakes and it was a hit! Thanks to you! :P~ Alvin

Anonymous said...

Lily, while the Taro Cake is wonderful with the chilly sauce, it is still incomplete with the sweet sauce.
It's posiible that you give us the sweet sauce recipe as well?

Again, your recipes are wonderful.
:P~ Alvin

Unknown said...


there is no recipe for the sweet sauce, just use hoisin sauce, straight or thin down with water. but, for the sweet sauce to go with chee cheong fun, i would add sesame paste or peanut butter and water.

Anonymous said...

yum yum yum !. my first attempt to make this cake and it turned up great. cheers

Anonymous said...

Lily, thanks. very yummy and good size recipe for family of 4 ;)

Anonymous said...

hi Lily,

Can I know how much does 1 cup of water yield? can you help to give in ml?



Unknown said...


here in the states the cup is 240 ml.

Anonymous said...

hi Lily,

thanks so much! Have enjoyed your food blog for your nice recipes..



Anonymous said...

it is possible to have the ingredients in measurement of cups instead of grams

Unknown said...


i am sure if you google for conversion, you will get it converted.

sorry, at the moment is very busy with chinese new year

Kingy said...

Hi Lily,

I tried this Yam Cake recipe and it was very nice indeed! However, I actually stamed the cake for 2 hours and it was still very soft and gooey, and only manage to set the cake after I cool it down in the fridge. When I poured the rice flour mix into the wok with the stir-fried yam, it started to thicken and form a consistency that was too thick to even stir. Was it because I did not add enough water or was the heat too high in the wok? Please advise. Thank you!

Unknown said...


if you have followed the recipe, then the liquid should be right and give you a good textured cake.

when the flour mixture is added into the wok, you must stir, if it thickens very fast, then the fire is too high. try lowering the fire to minumum before you add the flour mixture in

Kingy said...

Hi Lily, thanks for the advise, the cake turned out really well eventually! I am glad to stumble across your website, they are comfort food for someone like me far away from home! :)

Anonymous said...

That's it - Woo Tau Koh ! That's it which makes me gain 1~2 kgs easily during
Chinese New Year. Nevertheless, I just can't stay away from it.

Anonymous said...

Hello Lily,

I only have a small steamer. I plan to make a big tray of this yam cake. Can I use my oven to cook this yam cake?


Unknown said...


in fact use a few smaller pans that fit your steamer - smaller pans take shorter time for the cake to be cooked and the result is the same.

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