Kuih Bongkong or Kuih Jongkong (马来娘惹元宝/荷包糕)



In this region, there are many types of kuih or cakes and I can’t possibly tasted all of them especially if the kuih is regional and  has become less and less common. This is one of the many kuih that I have never tried before.


I am eating a piece of the kuih while writing this post  and I should say I like it. It is a rice flour cake, soft and flavoured by palm sugar..It is rather addictive especially after it was chilled in the fridge.


There are two names.. Malay called kuih bongkong and apparently, the Peranakan community called it kuih Jongkong. There is not much differences between the two version and there are basically the same . The nonya version usually added blue pea flower to the kuih whereas the Malay version is usually green (pandan) and yellow. ..I understand that this kuih is especially common in the state of Perak and Penang.


Jongkong in Malay means ingot, it was called as such possibly because it look liked an ingot. I heard some Chinese colloquially called it “wallet cake” meaning the cake looked like a wallet. I have difficulty to find out any additional information pertaining to the cake.


One of the distinct feature of the kuih is its wrapping into a parcel and I really felt a sense of achievement to be able to wrap it correctly. Such type of wrapping is definitely essential as the melted palm sugar will be collected by the “boat” made from banana leaves. Some of the Malay recipes have coconut milk being added to to the steaming too. But in this illustration, no coconut milk was being used.


Well, don’t be deterred if do not know how to wrap. I saw some recipes prepared this is a cup without banana leaves and palm sugar syrup were poured on top of the rice cake. Any differences, not much differences except the lack of banana leaves aroma.



Servings: 8-10 kuih bongkong


Rice Flour Batter

  • 125 grams of rice flour
  • 20 grams tapioca flour
  • 50 grams of castor sugar
  • 200 grams or ml of coconut milk
  • 500 grams of plain water
  • Pinches of salt


  • 3 tablespoon of thick blue pea flower (bunga telang concentrate)
  • 100 grams of palm sugar (Gula apong or gula melaka) – cut into small pieces
  • 100 ml or grams of coconut milk (not included in this illustration to be put at the last stage).- optional
  • At least 10 pieces of banana leaves with dimension of about 20 cm x 24 cm



  • Cut the banana leaves into 20 cm x 24 cm. Get ready a pot of boiling water, add a few drops of cooking oil,  blanch the banana leaves for 2-3 minutes until it is soft. Otherwise it will be very difficult to wrap and there is a tendency to break.

PicMonkey Collage1

  • Put the rice flour ingredients in a pot, stir until well mixed. Transfer the rice flour to a stove and heat under medium heat until it starts to thicken. Constant stirring is required as thickening can be fast. In the event that it thickens too fast, add a few more tablespoons of water to the batter. Slightly lumpy batter is acceptable.

  • Transfer 1/3 of the ingredients and add the bunga telang concentrate. Stir until well mixed.

PicMonkey Collage2

  • Put a piece of the blanched banana leaves, put about 1 tablespoon of palm sugar (I use semi solid gula apong). Put about 2 tablespoons of white rice batter on top follow by about 1 tablespoon of blue rice batter. You can adjust the size of the kuih according to your preference.

  • Use your hand to pull the longer side together (24cm side).

PicMonkey Collage3

  • With one hand holding/pinching the longer side, use the other hand to fold the shorter side (20cm) equally and push these ends to the centre. Perform the same for the other side. Pierce a tooth pick to the centre of the leaves.

  • If you want to add the coconut milk, you will need to secure one side first before you can add the coconut milk. Slightly tilted one side such that the coconut milk will not flow out. You can then proceed to fold the other side.

  • Steam the kuih in a steamer with hot boiling water for at least 15-20 minutes. Best chilled before serving. If preferred, cooked coconut milk can be added.



I do have difficulty to explain the wrapping part. You may want to Google “Kuih jongkong video” to have a better understanding. If you have never tried the kuih, please do try. If you are not confidence about the wrapping, just forget the wrapping, transfer the batter to the muffin cups, steam until set and served with coconut milk and palm sugar. Some stalls do sell in plastic mould instead of the traditional banana leaves.


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


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