Another Singapore Malaysia Hawker Food–Chwee Kueh or Steamed Rice Cake With Preserved Radish




This updated post is to simplify the preparation of chwee kuih using microwave oven. It needs only about 2 minutes (depending on the thickness) of the kuih you want. The advantages of using microwave version are:

  • It is much faster
  • Easier to prepare a small quantity to curb cravings
  • Less washing and less work involved.


The texture actually is much better than the steaming version as it is easier to control the texture you want. If you want a firmer and more QQ chwee kuih, you can extend the timing by 10-20 seconds.. Please scroll down towards the end for an updated procedures on using microwave.




Singapore have a very famous chwee kueh store in Tiong Bahru. My wife likes the chwee kueh there. However, if you asked me if I liked chwee kueh in general, I would say, not really because it is rather oily and plain..Plain in the sense that without the cai poh or preserved radish, the rice cake can be rather tasteless and it usually comes with very little quantity of preserved radish. If you asked for more, you will have to pay for additional charges..


Making chwee kueh is not really in my agenda. However, when one member  of my Facebook Group – Food Bloggers and Foodies United, Ms Wendy Chun posted the recipe in her post here, I told her that I wanted to try making it since the preparation appeared to be rather easy and I have all the ingredients at home. Making this will surprise my wife since this is her favourite hawker food.


As usual, let’s see what Wikipedia have written for this common household breakfast items:

“Chwee kueh (known also as chwee kway or chwee kweh) (Chinese: 粿; pinyin: shuǐguǒ; Pe̍h-ōe-jī: chúi-kóe; literally “water rice cake”) is a type of steamed rice cake, a cuisine of Singapore and Johor.

To make chwee kueh, rice flour and water are mixed together to form a slightly viscous mixture. They are then placed in small cup-shaped containers that look like saucers and steamed, forming a characteristic bowl-like shape when cooked. The rice cakes are topped with diced preserved radish and served with chilli sauce. Chwee kueh is a popular breakfast item in Singapore[ and Johor.” (Source:


Preparation is definitely not difficult and after taking my first bite, I believe I like it too. The kids  liked the rice cake especially the preserved radish. I have prepared 15 pieces from 150 gram of rice flour, it ended up that both my kids have eaten 9 pieces and leaving 6 pieces to be shared by my wife, my mother in law and me. I did not include the chilli sauce for this illustration and if you want you can always buy the ready made sambal chilli or home made chilli sauce to go with it.




Recipe adapted from : Wendy Chun’s Chwee Kueh Recipe

Servings: Prepare 12-15 cupcake size tin


  • 150 grams rice flour (粘米粉)
  • 1 tablespoon of wheat starch (澄粉) – not in picture and optional
  • 5 tablespoon of oil (食用油)
  • 160 ml/grams of cold water (冷水)
  • 500 ml/grams of hot water (热水)
  • pinches of salt (盐巴)


  • 100 grams of salted preserved radish (咸菜脯)
  • 100 grams of sweet preserved radish (甜菜脯)
  • 1/2 tablespoons of dark soya sauce (酱油)
  • Adequate cooking oil for stir frying (食用油)
  • 2 tablespoons of sugar (白糖)
  • 50 grams of chopped garlic (蒜蓉) 



  • Lightly greased 12-15 cupcake size baking tin or aluminium pie cups

  • Have a steamer ready with adequate hot water for steaming 15-20 minutes and pre-steam the cupcake tins.


  • In a big mixing bowl, add the 160 ml cold water, rice flour, wheat starch  and stir well. Add in 5 tablespoon of cooking oil and pinches of salt, stir well. Add in the 500 ml of hot water and stir well.


  • Fill  the flour mixture to the pre-steamed cupcakes tins with about 90% full. Steam in the steamer under medium to high heat for 15-20 minutes or when the cake is set. Once done, let it cool completely before using a toothpick or something sharp to take out the cake from the tins. Set aside.


For microwave version


  • Follow the above procedures to mix the batter. Transfer to a WELL GREASED MICROWAVABLE CONTAINER. Microwave for 2-3 minutes (depending on the thickness). For thickness of about 1 cm, it took about 2 minutes. Cool completely before transfer out and cut into desired shapes and sizes.


  • While the cake is cooling, in a big frying pan, put some cooking oil and stir fry the minced garlics and preserved radish together. Add additional oil if not adequate. Use medium to low heat to stir fry the preserved radish as high heat will cause the preserved radish to “jump” up and down and touching it can be messy. Patience is needed in this step. Stir fry until the radish is brownish and fragrance of preserved radish start to permeates the house. Add in the dark soya sauce and sugar, stir fry for another 1 minute until well mixed and sugar dissolves.


  • For serving, place a teaspoon of the radish on top of rice cake.




Home made chwee kueh is different from what you bought in the store. You can control the oil usage and most important of all, you can prepare as many radish as you want it to be.  Do give it a try.


Hope you like the post today. Cheers and have a nice day.




  • For more recipes, you can refer to my RECIPE INDEX (updated as at 8 June 2014)  here and you can follow me at PINTEREST or visit the blog’s FACEBOOK PAGE to keep abreast of my future posts.  



11 thoughts on “Another Singapore Malaysia Hawker Food–Chwee Kueh or Steamed Rice Cake With Preserved Radish

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