If you are a regular at dim sum restaurants (which are pretty plentiful here in Manila), you would have probably tasted radish cake. It is one of our favorite dim sum dishes.
A good radish cake is composed a nice shredding of radish and a nice toasty exterior.
Most commercial radish cakes sold in the market scrimp on ingredients (mostly composed of rice flour than anything else) So, for those who crave a nice full bodied radish cake, here is my SECRET recipe.
dried mushrooms, chinese sausage and dried shrimp are available in chinatown (in whatever country) It is one of the most basic ingredients of chinese cooking.
The dried mushrooms need to be reconstituted in hot water for about 5 minutes before you chop.
1/2 cup of reconstituted dried mushroom, chopped
1/2 cup chinese sausage, chopped
1/4 cup dried shrimp, reconstituted and chopped
3 lbs radish
2 tsp salt
2 cups rice flour
2 cups chicken stock (or 1 tbsp chicken powder in 2 cups water)+ 1 cup water
Peel and grate the radish. simmer in water for 15 minutes till soft. remove from pan and drain.
meanwhile, stir fry mushrooms, dried shrimp and sausage in pan for about 2 minutes, remove and add to the radish..mix in the chicken stock and rice flour. -- you can adjust the consistency of the mix by adding some more water --
it would look like this...
put into a container, cover with foil and steam for about 1 hour. cool and put in the fridge overnight or longer. (I used a plastic take out box- it would make it easier to give to friends)
to serve, cut the pieces and panfry until really toasted.-- I cut mine into two because I made them thinner. If you make yours thicker, you can cut it lengthwise and then crosswise to get the desired thickness. (the bottom of the container had indentations...)
use only rice flour and NOT glutinous rice flour. using the glutinous kind would make the radish cake too sticky.-- I did this when I first tried this recipe and it did not turn out good. It was REALLY gooey.
I find that letting the radish cake sit for two days in the fridge makes it better ( both for cutting and frying). do not cut the radish cake too thin, you might have a hard time pan frying it. I know you would want to try it as soon as it comes out of the steamer, but believe me... its really better chilled at least 1 day. This is nice to keep in the refrigerator for those "emergencies" when you crave for some luscious snacks and bread just won't do.