There was a recipe I saw online that caught my attention and I decided to try it – Ondeh Ondeh cheesecake. The Ondeh Ondeh is a tradition Malay or Peranakan kuih (Malay word for cake) that is essentially a bite-sized ball made of glutinous rice flour with a gula melaka (palm sugar) filling, coated with grated coconut. It is one of my favourite Malay snacks and I remember learning to make it back in school.
The recipe that I saw online intrigued me because it combined a yummy Southeast Asian snack with a western dessert. Alas, the recipe was a disappointment because the cheesecake just wouldn’t set properly. I was determined to find my own way to make the recipe better and started my own experiment.
After getting my neighbours, whom in my opinion are great food critics because of the rich heritage in their background, to try the two different versions, I am pleased to share my version of the Ondeh Ondeh cheesecake. Here’s the recipe!
2 cups of water
15 pandan leaves
50 mil milk
250g digestive biscuits
80g butter, melted
600g cream cheese, room temperature
80g icing sugar
200ml whipping cream
100g Gula Melaka
Grated or Desiccated coconut
For the Pandan Essence:
For the Cheesecake:
Pour Pandan gelatin mixture into cream cheese mixture and continue to mix.
Whisk whipping cream until fluffy.
Fold whipping cream and cream cheese mixture together.
If you like more Gula Melaka, you can increase the amount of Gula Melaka filling, or drizzle some on the cake itself.
The Pandan essence is quite a lot of work, so if you are short of time or want a shortcut, you can substitute it with instant Pandan essence or flavouring. When it is time to make the gelatin mixture, boil 1 cup of water with 3 teaspoons of Pandan flavouring and 1 tablespoon of gelatin powder.
Most importantly, feel free to improvise from this recipe and tweak it to suit your taste. =) Have fun!