My adaptation is to use some of the coconut milk to extract the Pandan, and got a vibrant colour, so I decided there was no need to add artificial colour in the end.
Some of my mistakes – I poured the first layer too quickly, got a very thick layer, as you can see from the cross section. Measuring by weight would have been better. The unmoulding was pretty challenging too, so I ruined a little of the sides, but this was fine after covering with desiccated coconut.
Below recipe is for the custard, prepare the cake ahead using recipe from here. Bake the exact recipe in a 8″ round tin at 160 deg C for 45 min and slice into 2 layers after it has cooled completely. Slice away the brown top layer if that bothers you.
- 12 blades of leaves, blended with 70g of water
- 240g coconut milk
- 70g of mung bean or Hun Kwee powder as shown (green coloured ones are also available)
- 600g water
- 1.5 tsp agar agar powder
- 50g butter
- 100g sugar
- 1/4 tsp salt
- Some dessicated coconut and cream for deco
1. Blend 70g water and Pandan leaves into a paste. Mix in about half the coconut milk into blended paste and stir till evenly matched mixed.
2. Squeeze pandan paste with hands over sieve, place over a bowl. Finally add in rest of coconut and mix. Measure out a total of 320g panadan coconut mixture.
3. To this pandan coconut mixture, add the mung bean powder and stir to dissolve. Set this bowl aside.
4. In a heavy pot, add water, sugar, butter, salt and agar agar. Heat with gentle flames till agar agar has dissolved. Do not allow to boil.
5. This is a crucial step, the agar agar must dissolve completely. I use a spoon to scoop out the mixture to check many times with my fingers. There were often particles of agar agar still not dissolved that cannot be easily seen with the eye. If not fully dissolved, the custard witll not set and the whole cake will fail.
6. Take pot off the stove. Add in Pandan mixture. Stir to combine.
7. Return to stove on low heat, stir constantly with handwhisk till the mixture thickens which is just a few minutes. It should be able to coat the spatula and sides of the pot. Let it cool for a few minutes.
8. Take a clean 8″ cake tin. Rinse with water and shake off excess.
9. Pour in 1/3 of Pandan kaya, place in freezer for 1 minute. Take out from fridge and add in first cake layer. Pour in another 1/3 Pandan kaya, again wait one minute in freezer, then put in the second cake layer. Pour in rest of Pandan kaya.
10. Allow the cake to cool, then fridge over night in chiller.
11. The next morning, overturn the cake onto a cake board. I placed a metal plate of hot water on top of cake tin and the cake took some time to finally slide out. You can also wrap the sides with a hot towel.
12. Decorate as you like.