Thailand: Traditional Palm Cake

Serves: 20     Cooking and preparation time: 5 hours (including fermenting process)

*Please note, this recipe is originally made with palm fruit, however, for New Zealand, it is best for accessibility reasons to use mango puree.

2 cup rice flour
8-10 tbsp evaporated milk
10 tbsp coconut milk
1 cup thickened mango puree (or finely strained palm fruit)
1 1/2 cups sugar
3/4 cup coconut milk
Pinch salt
Banana leaves (as many as you wish to serve)
1/2 fresh coconut, grated

Place two cups of rice flour into a mixing bowl. Pour the evaporated milk into the bowl and mix with hands. Gradually add the coconut milk as you mix until you get a damp batter.

Add the thickened mango puree or palm fruit into the soft batter and mix with hands until it becomes velvety in texture. Add the sugar for sweetness and continue mixing until all the sugar has dissolved.

To dampen the mixture, gradually add more coconut milk (about 3/4 cup) and mix thoroughly with hands. Add a pinch of salt to awaken the sweetness.

Place an air-tight lid over the bowl and put into a plastic case or bag. Leave the wrapped up mixture for four hours to naturally ferment.

After four hours, take the bowl out of the bag. In a large steamer, create little boats out of banana leaves and pour the mixture into each one. Add some shredded fresh coconut over the top of each one for extra flavour. Steam over boiling water for 20 minutes and serve.

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