One beautiful Saturday afternoon, I hosted a potluck lunch for my girlfriends (without partners and kids), whom you have ‘met’ on these posts, here and here. One of the girls, C, just visited a farm near her place before coming to my house. She’s a great multi-tasker, conjuring 2 absolutely mouth-watering plates of stir-fried veggies a la minute in my kitchen! And not only that, she brought her fresh homemade pizza dough and baked 3 different toppings of pizzas that afternoon! Yup, in my kitchen. Thanks, C. All 3 dishes were absolutely DIVINE and went down our tummies effortlessly!
Oh yes, the farm visit. C bought 3 dozens of super, super, SUPER fresh eggs. She must have waited for the chicken to lay the eggs at the farm as she was the last one to arrive that afternoon. Lol! Oh by the way, she also brought a Chiffon Cake pan, in the hope of using some of the eggs to bake a nice pandan Chiffon Cake in my kitchen, using my recipe, here.
But alas, there was no baking of a Chiffon Cake because everyone was stuffed to the brim and was too tired to do anything “strenuous” that Saturday afternoon.
Girls, thanks for bringing your “lucky” pot(s). It was gluttony all the way. Tsk! Tsk! Tsk! 😱
Before the girls left, C gave me 10 of the freshly laid free-range eggs. Boy, I felt so bad that I did not show her how to bake the Chiffon Cake. Sorry, C 😦
Making Good Use of C‘s Fresh Eggs
I knew exactly what I wanted to do with the super fresh eggs I got from C. Making my childhood favourite toasted bread spread, called kaya, had always been on my to-do list since time immemorial. Kaya is a Malay word, meaning ‘rich’, because of the creamy and custardy texture from the coconut cream/ milk and eggs (chicken or duck) and sweetened with sugar. Then other flavours or colours come in. If the kaya is brown, palm sugar or gula Melaka or gula Apong is used, whilst the green-coloured kaya is flavoured with the sweet and fragrant herb called Pandanus (or Screwpine).
I was lucky I had a packet of frozen pandan leaves in my freezer ~ not opened or used yet ~ but telepathically, waiting for me to conquer ’em. So yes, I was making the fragrant pandan coconut jam – FINALLY!
The most basic kaya recipe has only 3 ingredients ~ eggs, coconut cream/ milk and sugar, and yet most people shun from making it. Why? Because the task of standing hours on end stirring the mixture over the stovetop is immensely unexciting, dull and monotonous! It can take as long as 3 hours! It’s not like preparing slow-cooked meat stew that you can leave the cooking unattended, but you need to keep an eye on the kaya mixture, stirring constantly in order to end up with the texture you want, otherwise you have to start all over again!
In my opinion, there is no one right homemade kaya consistency or texture. This is really subjective and very personal to one’s target preference.
By the way, I recently owned the latest model of the Thermomix, the TM5. This kitchen gadget has been a great “helper”in my kitchen. Instead of me stirring the mixture, my thermie was doing the job. I could do 101 other things while waiting for my kaya to set. I was even watching the telly!
I know there are many shortcut recipes out there, that could churn the kaya in 10 to 15 minutes. But hey, I’m not the one who’s stirring, so time and energy are not the essence 😜
My objective was to make a decent kaya that I could enjoy and reminiscing my childhood days. Period.
As I have said earlier, the ingredients are pretty obvious in making kaya. Eggs (usually the yolks), sugar and coconut cream/ milk. Since the eggs I got from C were super fresh, I decided to use 5 whole eggs!
Note: If you do not own a Thermomix, the ingredients remain the same, BUT you need to manually stir the mixture in a double boiler pot or a crock pot or a heavy bottom wok or pan. Eyeballing on the texture and consistency is key. Slow Cooker works well, too. You may want to refer to my pumpkin jam recipe, Slow-cooked Zesty Pumpkin Jam.
- 5 fresh free-range whole eggs
- 140 g castor sugar (increase the quantity if you have sweet tooth, but 140 g is more than sweet)
- 245 g coconut milk (if possible, get freshly squeezed coconut cream/milk, but there ain’t any here, so the best I could get hold of was 250 ml brik Chaokoh coconut milk)
- A tiny pinch of sea salt (my secret ingredient)
- 40 g freshly extracted first-pressed pandan juice (from 20 pandan leaves) ~ a post on how I extracted the pandan juice coming up next on my blog (here).
Preparation ( TM5 way) –
- Insert the butterfly attachment in the TM bowl and add sugar and eggs. Mix for 30 sec/ speed 3
- Add coconut milk, concentrated first-pressed pandan extract and a pinch of salt. Cook for 40 min/ 98C/speed 2 without MC
- Check the consistency of the texture by smearing a small portion of the cooked kaya with the spatula against the inner bowl of the TM. If the kaya mixture is still too runny, it’s not done yet, however, if the mixture takes a while to roll back to the bottom of the bowl, then it’s done. (Note: I had to do the ‘test’ twice as the consistency of my kaya was still a bit runny in the first 40 mins. I added 2.5 mins * 2 at 90deg C. Be warned that the texture and consistency of the kaya is subjective. If you prefer a runny kaya, then by all means, cook for a shorter time. I prefer a less runny kaya, that’s all 😜)
- Once you have reached the texture you want, blend the mixture for 20 seconds from speed 0 to 4 for a smoother consistency (Note: you can blend above speed 4 if you don’t mind the mixture splattering to the lid and the sides of the inner bowl)
- Pour the kaya into sterilized jar(s). Refrigerate once cooled.
How to eat Kaya ?
Imagine kaya as your Nutella spread, or peanut butter or jam or confituur. For me, I like to spread my kaya on white toasted bread with a layer of butter. The best brekkie or High-tea. Mmm…
Oh by the way, with this recipe, I could only fill one jar, which is luckily bigger than the normal jam jars. It’s really quite addictive and Preciousss!! So you can imagine how miserly the consumption was. Lol!
This makes a great tea time treat anytime. For this, I am entering this post to the monthly Tea Time Treats Linky Party – March 2016 hosted by Karen of Lavender and Lovage and Jane of The Hedgecombers
With the all-natural green colour from one of South East Asia’s most beloved herbs, the pandanus, I’m thrilled to link this post to Lavender and Lovage’s Cooking with Herbs for Easter and Spring
A Blessed AND Peaceful Easter!