Friday, 17 February 2012

{Photo Friday} Hakka Abacus Seeds - 客家算盘子

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Time flies fast and today it's Friday again where we have another interesting recipe theme for our Photo Friday. Just for a quick introduce, the above Abacus Seeds is one of the Hakka's specialty where the family will get to eat them during special occasions or gatherings. Since olden time till now, the side ingredients have become varied such as minced meat, cuttlefish, mushrooms, dried shrimps, tau kwa(firm beancurd) and etc.

The Abacus seeds are made using yam and tapicoa flour which blends into a dough, cut and made into balls before there are transform into abacus shape like beads. Although the process might be time-consuming but this dish is indeed a very delicious and meaningful traditional Hakka delights.


HAKKA ABACUS SEEDS


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My In-laws' dialect group is Hakka so whenever my mother-in-law comes to visit us, she will always bring some of her special homecook such as Hakka Abacus Seeds(客家算盘子), Hakka Yong Tau Foo(客家釀豆腐) and Hakka Mei Cai Kou Rou(梅菜扣肉). Although she did not teach me this dish through hands-on but I have seen her making this and roughly through her estimation ingredients I came out with my own version of this Hakka Abacus Seeds.


(Serves: 4 | Preparation: 40 minutes | Cooking: 15 minutes)

Abacus Seeds Ingredients:
300g Yam, cut into small slices
100g - 150g Tapioca Flour
1/4 Teaspoon Pepper
1/4 Teaspoon Salt
1/2 Tablespoon Light Soy Sauce
2 Tablespoons Vegetable Oil
A Pot Of Ice Water

Ingredients For Side Fillings:
300g Pork Mince/Belly Pork
2 Pieces Of Small Firm Beancurds, cubes
4 Shiitake Mushrooms, sliced
50g Black Fungs, soaked till soften
50g Dried Shrimps, soaked till soften
5 Cloves Garlic, finely chopped
4 Shallots, finely sliced
Sauce:
100ml Of Water, from soaking mushroom
1/2 Teaspoon Chicken Stock Granules
1/2 Teaspoon Dark Soy Sauce
For Garnish:
1 Stalk Spring Onion, finely chopped
3-4 Small Chillies, finely sliced
1 Tablespoon Dried Shallot
Some Pepper


You can refer the steps on making this Hakka Abacus Seeds from one of my existing post HERE.

Abacus Seeds may be customized based on individual's likes and dislike on whether more yam/flour, types of side ingredients, soup or dry version during cooking. No matter which is your preference, this is indeed one of the traditional dish that is worth trying and pass down to the younger generation before it became history.

25 comments:

  1. Oooh...thanks! I love Hakka abacus and your recipe is just what I've been looking for ;-) gonna try it ;-)

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    1. Hi Amy, hope my recipe works for you. Do share with us your end products :)

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  2. Very thoughtful mother-in-law. This is an interesting dish with a unique name. For me, it is a more yam and soup version. =)

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    1. Yup Raquel: She always cook special dishes for us :)

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  3. My favorite Hakka dish after Thunder Tea! My Mum's friend substitute Yam with Pumpkin. The Abacus seeds were golden in color! Pretty!

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    1. The Dead Cockroach: Yes yes I made the Pumpkin version b4 it is indeed nicer in colour. For mine i mixed both the yam and pumpkin abacus together so i get to get two different texture in a plate :p

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  4. my mom is hakka so you just named all my fave hakka dishes! i also like the xi ban :) your abacus seeds look really good!

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    1. Thanks Janie! Wowow "Xi Ban - 客家喜粄" I have not tried b4 as but i also like the "Black Bean Kueh" hehehe guess all these heritage dishes are worth learning and try.

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  5. This is so cool! I can't wait to try making this at home.

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    1. Grubarazzi: Yup! This is indeed a very delicious heritage dish :)

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  6. I heard of the word "Hakka" but forgot how I learned or heard it. This is very interesting and delicious looking dish. It's wonderful that you could learn from your MIL. Mine is too far and I haven't learn a single dish from her. Too bad.. Thanks for sharing Ellena!

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    1. Nami! "Hakka" is a popular clan in Taiwan which is where you heard it from :) And this Abacus seeds dish is also a popular dish among the Taiwanese. Never mind at least you have your mum to impart some of her skills to you where you can pass it down to your girl when she is older :)

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    2. Oh I see! No wonder it sounds familiar. I might have the dish before or I heard about the clan. It's very unique word but it sounded very familiar to me. Hope you are doing well Ellena!

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  7. Wow I always regarded this as one of those impossibly difficult dishes to get right! I wonder if I dare try it! I love the QQ type...so hard to get in Singapore!

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    1. Yup Catherine! I agreed with you the texture of the beads will be affected by the amt of flour and quality of yam, plus the cooking time too :) Although this dish is kind of hard work but we simply love it.

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  8. Your dish of Hakka Abacus Seeds is beautiful. Very patient hands to form them. I love dishes that are passed down from generation to generation, they are always cherished. Take care, BAM

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    1. Thanks BAM. Indeed making these beads takes some time and patience.

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  9. I have not tasted 算盘子...your homemade version looks very delicious!
    btw, just want to let you know that I have something to share with you, do drop by my blog to pick up an award that I would like to pass it on to you :)

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    1. Thanks for the awards plus kind comment :)

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  10. My mom is not a Hakka, but she likes to cook 算盘子 during CNY eve. She said to unstop counting the money, hahaha.. Yours look so yummy!

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    1. Yes yes We love this dish too :) Count and Count :p

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  11. It is not easy to see such Hakka traditional dish being prepared to such perfect level. Now I think those abacus seeds look like those thumbprint cookies (the shape) that I usually see. ;p

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    1. Thanks HL :) Those "cute" prints are all done by my boy :)

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  12. Hi ellena,
    You r godsend n I've been churning out your recipes n making me looking very good infront of my family ESP my in laws! Your abacus recipe is eZ to follow n very yummy! I've tried muah Chee n eggless ice cream too :)

    Hakka daughter in law :)

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    Replies
    1. Hi there, glad that the recipe turns out well over at your end. And thanks for the kind words. Perhaps you would like to share some of your successful food photo in our facebook as an encouragement for others who love to cook/bake too :)

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Regards
Ellena (Cuisine Paradise)

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