Sunday, January 4, 2009

Onde-onde (Stuffed Glutinous Rice Balls)

I do believe that onde-onde first originated from Indonesia but it had been adopted by both the Malay and Peranakan cultures. I remembered when young my mother would buy kuih-kuih (local Malay cakes/desserts)for us kids to eat during tea times. And more often than not, onde-onde would be included. I love eating these chewy little balls of rice flour as the centers would contain palm sugar. I'll pop the whole ball into my mouth and bite down into them in anticipation of the palm sugar squirting out into my mouth. It was such a "rush" ... and believe it or not, I still do it now!

This is my first time making these and I found that it's really simple to do so. It's just a bit time consuming waiting to cook each rice ball. I figured out that I could get a whole lot of onde-onde from Four Singapore Dollars (S$4) if I made it myself as compared to buying S$4 worth of onde-onde from shops which would only give me 6 to 8 pieces maximum.

Onde-onde (Stuffed Glutinous Rice Balls)
(Makes about 20 balls)


200g (1 3/4 cups) glutinous rice flour
150ml (2/3 cup) pandan juice *
3 Tbsp and 1 tsp water
200g (1 1/3 cup) palm sugar, finely chopped
1/2 tsp fine salt
75g (3/4 cup) grated young coconut

Pandan Juice *
(Makes 1/2 cup)

6 - 8 large pandan (pandanus) leaves
150ml (2/3 cup) water

Rinse pandan leaves and using a kitchen scissor or a sharp knife, cut leaves into 2cm (3/4") length. Place leaves and water in a chopper or blender and process until pulveried. Pour through a fine strainer and discard solids. Measure out the required amount of juice for this recipe.


1) Combine the glutinous rice flour, pandan juice and water together in a medium-sized bowl, kneading well to form a smooth, pliable dough. Cover dough with a damp towel to prevent it drying out.

2) Bring a pan of water to the boil, then lower heat so that the water simmers gently. Pinch out a ball of dough about the sixe of a lime, flatten it into a disk and drop it into the simmering water. When the disc is cooked and rises to the surface, lift it out with a slotted spoon, shake off any excess water and knead the cooked dough evenly back into the main ball of dough.

3) Mix salt and grated coconut together and place on a plate.

4) Pinch off small balls of dough the size of calamansi limes (about 20g each) and roll in your palms to form smooth balls. Carefully make a small well in the centre of the dough andfill with chopped palm sugar. Pinch dough together to enclose, roll them gently to smoothen and, as you make them, drop them into the simmering water.

5) When the dough balls float to the top, carefully remove them with a slotted spoon and allow any excess water to drip off. Drop the balls into the grated coconut and roll them around to coat evenly. Transfer to a serving plate.


Phoebe said...

Hey Jo! Not wanting to criticise your food expertise, but is onde onde & 湯圓 not the same except just added pandan for onde onde? Mum uses sweet potato as the ball rather than rice flour. Yours looks adorable.

Jo said...

Hi Phoebe, actually onde-onde and 湯圓(tangyuan) are both different types of desserts. However both do use glutinous rice flour and if loosely translated in English it would mean "glutinuous rice balls". Onde-onde is synonmous with Malay cuisine whilst tangyuan is Chinese. Onde-onde can also be made with sweet potato instead of glutinous rice flour and it's filling is usually palm sugar. It is rolled in shredded coconut and is eaten as is. Tangyuan on the other hand comes with a syrup soup and it's filing is quite varied such as sesame, peanut and even yam paste. It does not use palm sugar as it's filing.

Phoebe said...

oh right, just similar ingredients eh? Thanks for the helpful tip!

Maya said...

Lovely onde onde,this was always a favourite teatime kuih at our home too!

Joie de vivre said...

How wonderful to make these yourself and save so much money. I've never seen anything quite like these before. What is pandan?

Jo said...

Hi Maya, thanks for dropping by and it's one of my favourites as well.

Joie, I'm not sure if you can find pandan leaves where your're at but the below site will give you an idea of what it is. Alternatively you can find pandan flavouring in a bottle, probably at an Asian or Thai grocer.

javapot said...

Nice ondeh ondeh.

Scott at Real Epicurean said...

A very original and I'm sure very tasty recipe! I'd love to try these but don't fancy my chances of finding all the ingredients locally :(

pigpigscorner said...

Nice looking ondeh-ondeh! Would like to give these kuih-muih a go one day!

Abby said...

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Indonesia-Eats said...

The Malaysian onde-onde is what Indonesians call for klepon. It is very popular in Javanese community. While in Indonesia, onde-onde itself is a round fritter covered with sesame seed and filled with mung bean paste.

Anyway, your onde-onde reminds me of my childhood.

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Anonymous said...

Hi - I am definitely delighted to discover this. great job!

sandy said...

hmmm ... onde onde is the most delicious light meal

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