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Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Lok Tau Peang [GREEN Pea cookies]


                     From the time of my schooling days, Lok Tau Peang has been my favourite.  I remember those days when I used to buy them at the school tuck shop, they were slightly bigger than a 50 cents coin & a deep yellow colour & they were also quite hard & when we eat them, we have to keep our mouth close for fear that any "excess" flour will fly out of your mouth & after eating them, our tongue will be yellow & the mouth a little sticky but I still loved them.  Many decades have since passed & when 8 years ago when I heard that the awesome chef, we learnt from, was teaching them, I had to clear my calendar & made a bee line for the class AND I was not disappointed.  The Lok Tau Peang that I learnt, literally, melted in my mouth & had a beautiful aromatic fragrance & definitely a far cry from the ones I used to eat in my school days SO every CNY I must bake them & have my fix.  Hope you gals do try them & let me know what you think of them. 

                   Baba & Lingams sell this ROASTED Green Pea Flour & You need to sieve the green pea flour as sometimes you can find some grainy peas & by sieving same, you sort of fluff the flour. Two very important things to take note is also you need to buy High RATIO Flour/Superfine Flour & the 3 ELEPHANT RICE FLOUR, For me when the Chef mentioned we needed to buy this particular Rice Flour, I only buy the same as I am quite "paranoid" as they are also Blended Rice Flour SO make sure you buy the 3 Elephant Rice Flour yah!!! A couple of weeks ago I was quite upset as I could Not find the 3 Elephant Rice Flour inspite of checking out whenever I am at a supermarket or a grocery shop & as I wanted to eat the Lok Tau Peang I decided that I would make the Rice Flour myself. So I wash, dried in the sun, fried it without oil for a short while then blended the rice flour.  I then sieved it twice & found that it was grainy still & I would not let that defeat me.  I proceeded to pound same in a bowl with my wooden rolling pin [as if I were to use my mortar & pestle which I use to pound my rempah for cooking, I am sure that the rice flour would have a slight chilly taste & aroma & as I did Not have a mortar & pestle like the one Jamie Oliver uses & sell, I made do with a bowl & my wooden rolling pin.  It was slightly better but not as fine as the rice flour we would buy as they have powerful machinery to do this. I proceeded to do the cookies & I found that, using the rice flour that I made myself, the cookies had a slight crunch but melted after a few seconds & that made me wonder, perhaps in the composition of the rice flour there were other things like perhaps corn flour, etc? THEN a week after I baked the cookies, I happen to pass another grocery shop & being the person that I am, I went to check for this particular brand and lo & behold, I found it!!! Happiness was apparent in my face as I needed same to also make the Pie Tees!!! For a moment I thought that the company discontinued the item.  Praise the Lord, Allelulia!!!  Sorry for this rigmarole.  Ok now for the recipe.

Ingredients

110 gm              shortening
250 gm              Roasted Green Pea Flour, sieved
  50 gm              High Ratio Flour OR Superfine Flour, sieved
  25 gm              Rice Flour, sieved [3 Elephant brand]
110 gm              Icing Sugar, sieved
  80 gm              Almond nibs, toasted
 SLIGHTLY LESSER THAN 1/8 TEASPOON SALT [The salt is for enhancing the flavour but make sure that it IS LESSER than 1/8 teaspoon]

Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to *140 degrees Celcius [Pse see note below] for 15 minutes.
  2. LINE trays with parchment paper.
  3. SIEVE the roasted Green Pea Flour, High Ratio Flour, Rice Flour, Icing Sugar INTO the mixing bowl. 
  4. Throw in the almond nibs & salt into the mixing bowl & using an electric mixer, On lowest speed, mix it thoroughly for a minute [to ensure that everything is mixed properly].
  5. Add the shortening & mix on lowest speed until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs.  [I use a Kenwood Major & step No.4 will take me about 8 - 10 minutes].
  6. Then remove bowl from machine & still in the bowl, knead it with your hands till it clings together. Press mixture to form a ball.
  7. Dust your mould with a little roasted green pea flour.
  8. Press mixture into mould. Remove dough from mould by knocking.  [Remember to cover the "excess" mixture that you are not using as yet].
  9. AS these cookies DO NOT expand, you can place them quite close. Place the cookies on the prepare trays. 
  10. Bake in preheated oven for 30 minutes Or until lightly brown at the bottom of the cookie & fragrant.
  11. Remove from oven & leave cookie on the tray for 5 minutes before turning them on to wire rack to cool completely.
  12. Store in airtight containers with paper in between layers.
  13. Makes approximately 84 cookies.

               Notes

          a) *As everyone's oven is different, you must know your own oven heat.  When I learnt, the recipe called for 140 degrees Celcius but I found that 135 degrees Celcius at the same time frame ie 30 minutes works fine for my oven.
         
            b)  A bonus -  This dough can also be kept in the mixing bowl, cover the top of the mixing bowl & can be kept at room temperature for 2 days as there are no eggs in the recipe. One thing to also take note is your own electric mixer.  I use a Kenwood Major which is a very good machine & I sometimes multiply the ingredients by 3.5 times & it can "withstand" the pressure of same.

              c)  You can also substitute the Shortening with 100 ml Peanut Oil BUT take note that the peanut oil has to be warmed slightly to enable it to combine with the dry ingredients & Please note  to put the slightly warmed Peanut Oil gradually & in the same way as per the recipe ie. Step No.5.

                  d) You also need to use a toothpick to clean the any remnant of dough in the openings of the mould after each time to ensure that you get a "flawless" cookie & we were also taught to use a soft brush to brush the top of the cookie before placing them on the prepared tray, you will know what I mean from the following picture. 


                                  Yipee they are ready for me!!!


                           Sorry didn't place the left mould nearer.  Ok here's it.  First place a little roasted green pea flour in the mould then turn over & knock the excess off.  Then fill the mould [centre picture]. Then use a spatula to scrape it to level then knock out the dough.


                                  Use a soft brush to brush the top of cookie. 


                                Do you see what I mean when I say to use a toothpick to clean the mould after each knock.  See the flower on the top of the cookie is so prominent.  I even go further to see that if the curves at the sides are not beautiful, I throw it back into the pile & do again as I am very "fussy" even when I am not selling the cookies & make these for myself, I want to ensure that they are beautiful.

                       Till my next post, xoxo, Ophelia.  Do let me know whether you like same if you try them. 

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