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Kuih lapis, seri muka, tepung pelita; you have tried them all. Malaysian kuihs come in all forms, tastes and colours. With so many varieties to complement your main dishes or even just as snacks to enjoy with your Teh Tarik come tea time, there is always one that is perfect for every occasion. While the more common ones like onde-onde and kuih ketayap are ubiquitous across states in Malaysia, some are unique and are only popular in a few states or localities. As we celebrate Ramadan at home this year, here are a few you can try making for Iftar or Moreh!


Photo courtesy of @NanaSabrinaSarsan

 A local favourite in Penang, Serabai is a local version of Appam and is typically enjoyed with a special sweet sauce made of Gula Melaka (palm sugar). Probably unlike other desserts, Serabai is savoured during breakfast and is a meal of its own, akin to pancakes eaten in the West. Even though the traditional dipping sauce is usually made of palm sugar, many opt to dip Serabai in the sweet and delicious taste of Serawa Durian! While it is not easily available at restaurants in other states in Malaysia, other than Penang, it has a steady demand in Kedah, Melaka and Sabah. Interestingly, Serabai is a common serving in certain states during funeral receptions, which lends its nickname “Kuih Mayat”.



2 cups of rice flour

1/2 cup of cold rice

1/2 cup of coconut milk

1 tsp. instant yeast

2 tsp. sugar.

1 1/2 cups of water.

1 tsp salt


1. Put sugar in ½ cup of water and add yeast, set aside.

2. Blend rice with 1 cup of water, then add salt and rice flour.

3. Mix the yeast and rice mixtures until it becomes a smooth dough. Set aside for a couple of hours

4. Heat mixture on the stove until it is cooked. (Use serabai acuan if available, to get the round shape)


1 cup of brown sugar

1 cup of coconut milk

1/2 cup of water

2 eggs

1 cup of thick coconut milk & add 1 tbspn of corn flour (mix)

2 pandan leaves


  1. Put sugar, water and eggs and mix well.
  2. Pour the mixture into the kuali in a medium heat temperature. Stir the mixture and when it starts boiling, put in the coconut milk and corn flour mixture.
  3. Cook until it turns a golden colour

Bonus: instead of Gula Melaka sauce, dip Serabai into Serawa Durian for that extra oomph!


2 cups of coconut milk

100g of durian (flesh)

     80g granulated sugar

     ¼ tspn salt

     1 pandan leafknotted

1 egg white (beat)

  1. Mix all ingredients (except egg white) and heat until it starts boiling. Put in egg white last
  2. Cook until the sauce starts to thicken.

More on the recipe here: Resepi Kuih Serabai


Looking for something sweet and crunchy to munch? This local kuih can be your popcorn substitute and once you start popping them into your mouth, you’ll be licking your fingers to get the icing sugar goodness! Lidah Buaya or crocodile’s tongue, is a local favourite in Sabah. The kuih probably got its name from its visuals that can be likened to a crocodile’s tongue but fret not, because no meat is used to make the dessert!

Photo courtesy of friedchillies.com


6 tbsp. cornflour
6 tbsp. oil
500g plain flour
2 tbsp. margarine
1 egg
200ml water
Icing sugar for dusting


1. Mix cornflour and oil until it becomes a smooth paste, set aside.

2. Incorporate margarine into flour. Beat egg and add it to flour together with water.

3. Knead until it forms a smooth dough. Rest dough in the fridge for 30 minutes.

4. Roll out rested dough to about 5mm thick and brush cornflour oil all over, covering the surface.

5. Roll it into a cylinder and cut into slices.

6. Flatten each slice, you can see swirl effect on the dough. Chill in fridge for 30 minutes.

7. Deep fry cold dough in hot oil until golden brown. Drain on a rack to remove excess grease.

8. Cool to room temperature and dust with icing sugar.

You can check out the recipe from Fried Chillies!


Literally translated to “Jump, Stab”, this dessert has gained fame not just owing to its rather peculiar name. The components that make up the dessert come in a shocking palette of pink and green, coated with the white santan and the brown Gula Melaka, make it aesthetically pleasing and fun to eat. Commonly enjoyed in the East Coast states of Pahang, Kelantan and Terengganu, the dessert has gained more popularity as they often feature in Kelantanese restaurants or cuisines around Klang Valley.

Photo courtesy of pinterest


  100ml coconut milk

  100ml water

  2 tbsp rice flour

  2 tsp sugar

  1 tsp fine salt

  • Place all the ingredients into a pot over medium heat and cook until mixture is thick, about 5 minutes.


  100ml water

  100g sugar

  50g gula Melaka

  1 pandan leafknotted

  • Place all the ingredients into a pot over medium heat and stir till combined. Remove the pandan leaf.


  100ml water

  150g rice flour

  1 tsp green food colouring

  ½ tsp fine salt

  • Place all ingredients into a pot over medium heat and stir until mixture is thick, about 5 minutes. Divide the mixture among 10 cupcake moulds and chill for at least 30 minutes, until set.


  100g glutinous rice

  50ml coconut milk

  2 tbsp sugar

  1 tsp red food colouring

  ½ fine salt

  • Place all the ingredients into a pot over medium heat and boil until rice is cooked. Pack the rice tightly into 10 cupcake moulds.


Pour the coconut milk mixture and syrup into a flat bowl. Unmould the pudding and place it in the centre of the bowl, then unmould a pulut merah disc and place on top of the pudding. Serve immediately.

Get more details on the recipe here: Kuali


Arguably one of the most intriguing-looking apams around, this delicacy from the state of Negeri Sembilan will definitely pique your interest with its unique visual. Made with coconut milk, rice flour, yeast and brown sugar, this fluffy cake has its brown flesh peeking out from the rambai leaves. Kuih Apam Johol tastes sweet and is best enjoyed with sambal tumis, bean porridge or rendang. Like Serabai, it is usually served during breakfast or tea time.

Photo courtesy of friedchillies.com


100g red gula merah

2 tbsp. white sugar

1 ½ cups water

300g plain flour

4g yeast

2 tbsp. margarine

25 Rambai leaves



1.Mix gula merah, white sugar and water together and bring it to a boil. Once sugars dissolve, set aside to cool.

2. Sift flour and add in yeast and margarine. Pour in sugar syrup and start mixing until well combined. Mix for 5 minutes with a mixer or 20 minutes by hand.

3. Let dough rest for 20 minutes. The consistency should be very sticky and stretchy.

4. In the meantime, wipe rambai leaves clean and trim off sides to even out the sizes. Use a sharp knife to cut off the leaf’s midrib.

5. Once dough has risen, oil the leaf’s smooth side.

6. Fold it on one side and tuck in under to form a pocket and add in a spoonful of dough onto the center. Fold it again on the opposite side to seal the edges. There should be a small gap in the middle to allow the dough to puff up when it is steamed. Tuck down the edges.

7. Repeat process until all dough are used up.

8. Steam for 10 minutes. Best enjoyed warm from the steamer.

Follow Fried Chillies for the recipe!

We hope that you can benefit from these recipes and try them out while staying at home this Ramadan. Share with us your favourite traditional kuih and let us know if you have tried making any of these recipes.