These snacks are everywhere on earth! Where you can find Chinese or IndoChinese, they will be present. Northern Asia of China to Taiwan to Japan to Korea, the Indochina of Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand to Southeast Asia of Singapore, Malaysia and Indonesia. They are omipresent.
And rightfully so. They are heavenly. When you bite pass the crunchy fragrant surface, the crust collapses into the sweet and tempting filings, which is normally sweet.
I created this recipe with very basic and simple ingredients that should work with any amateur cook. I just thought this way: 200g of flour is about the right amount, and then 1/4 of this in sugar (or 4:1 flour to sugar) will be good, salt should cut through the sweetness so lets have a pinch, and we should bind this with hot water… how much, lets play it by ear and touch. That’s it!
200g Glutinuous rice flour (or replace 50g with boiled and mashed sweet potatoes)
50g Caster sugar
A pinch of salt
250 to 300ml of hot water at 70C (enough to bind into a dough that can be handled)
30g black sesame seed toasted and ground
45g coarse sugar
3 Tbsp butter at 18C
- Combine everything until it becomes a paste, then store in the fridge.
- Combine all the dry ingredients, then add the hot water to the dry this slowly, ensuring not too much water is added at one go. Your dough must be smooth and easy to handle but still pliable and not dry.
- The dough must be used quickly or it will dry out and your sesame balls will crack while frying in the oil.
- Preheat height of 3 inches of cooking oil to medium heat.
- Cut into sizes of 20g each, wrap 1/2 teaspoonful of filings and wrap up.
- Roll into a ball and dip it into the a bowl of water, then white sesame.
- Gently put the balls into oil, moving the balls all the time.
- Dish out and feed!
Look at how HHHUGGE these sesame balls are at Xishuangbanna, Yunan China. Photo courtesy of my friend, Henry Ang. He told me these are without filings. They are called 空心金堆.
In January 2017, I visited the Can Cau traditional market where the flower Hmong tribes normally does their Saturday marketing. The market looks like this, each of these traditional costumes cost US$100 or so. They would save and save just to buy one.
Their sesame balls are exactly like ours in Singapore, with green bean paste! Tastes exactly the same too!