Malaysian Monday 82 : Rainbow agar-agar / Agar-agar pelangi

Monday, September 19, 2011

Hello again. How are we all keeping?

Hopefully this post has gone up without a glitch as we are still traipsing around on holiday. Thanks for all the lovely comments on my previous posts, will be back to read your blogs again soon :)

Nothing too fancy today, just a simple serve of agar-agar with a bit of reminiscing on the side.

This agar-agar was often trotted out at celebrations. As schoolkids, we’d have a class party on the last day of the year. Everyone would bring a plate and this was the dish Mum would often make. It’s simple yet very eye-catching, and appeals to anyone with a sweet tooth.

I’d actually attempted this agar-agar using a different recipe a few times before, without success. That recipe used custard powder, and I didn’t like the final flavour. This time, I found a similar recipe here (it’s in Bahasa Malaysia), so I tweaked it a little and gave it a try. This was definitely very close to the agar-agar of my childhood. Happily, my own little MC’s enjoyed this treat too.

Muhibbah Malaysian Monday is still running, and I’ll be your host for the next round-up.  Please send all your entries for September to me at its(dot) sharon(at) gmail(dot) com. Don’t worry if you don’t hear back from me immediately when you send an email. I’ll be checking intermittently. Muhibbah Malaysian Monday is a monthly event that is co-hosted with Suresh from 3 Hungry Tummies.

Rainbow agar-agar

1 egg yolk
1/2 cup milk
grated zest of 1 orange
3 1/4 tsp agar-agar powder
500ml water
1/4 cup caster sugar
food colouring of choice

Prepare a mold in which to set the agar-agar. Anything non-stick will work, just sprinkle it with a little water to help the agar-agar release later. I used silicon cupcake cups. Also have handy the food coloring and bowls for mixing the coloured portions. It helps to put the bowls in the fridge to cool them down first.

Place the agar-agar powder and water in a saucepan and stir well. Bring to the boil and stir until all the agar-agar has dissolved. Add the sugar and stir until dissolved.  Meanwhile, beat the egg yolk and milk gently together in a bowl and stir in the orange rind.

Use a ladle to remove about 2/3rds of the liquid agar-agar in the pan, and place this clear portion into the mold or cupcake liners. Do not let this mixture set. (I think set agar-agar can be reboiled to return it to its liquid state but I’ve never tried it before).

Pour the rest (1/3) of the agar-agar in the pan into the egg mixture and mix well. Return this egg/milk/agar portion to the pan and stir over gentle to medium heat until the mixture thickens slightly.

Divide this mixture between three bowls (or as many colours as desired), add the food colouring and stir well.

Work quickly now because agar-agar sets fast, even at room temperature. Use a teaspoon to gently dollop the coloured agar mixes onto the clear agar sitting in the mold. If the clear agar isn’t cool enough, the coloured mix might spread too much. We are aiming for the coloured mix to stay droplet like suspended in the clear layer.

Let set, then transfer to the fridge to chill. Best served cold. There will be more coloured mix than clear mix, so just set the colourful mixture in a separate mold.


Smoky Wok (formerly Tastes of Home) said...

mmm..your agar agar looks and sounds so yummy! I love refreshing and colourful agar agar anytime hehe

Lora said...

So pretty. Love the colors!

babe_kl said...

Brilliant technique here and I thot you have used straws to blot in the spots :p

Anh said...

looove the colors!! What a fun idea!

Malay-Kadazan girl said...

So cute and eye-catching!

Fiona said...

Shaz I finally got to learn a lot more about Malaysian food from a friend here in Shanghai - now totally hooked! Hope you're still enjoying your holidays!

grace said...

i feel like i'm totally missing out, not playing around with agar as you are. look at the possibilities!

shaz said...

Thanks everyone, sorry for being so tardy in reading your comments!