Ketupat or rice cakes are a popular dish that you can substitute normal rice with in a meal. In Malaysia, it is widely-known and typically paired with a variety of other traditional Malay dishes, especially during Hari Raya Aidilfitri or Hari Raya, for short.
During the festive season, people wrap ketupats in woven palm leaves in the shape of a diamond. This dish is a must-have as it represents the Malay heritage and is one of the essential hallmarks of the celebration.
Origin of Ketupat
We believe that generations of seafarers has passed down the tradition of wrapping rice in fan palm leaves. During their long voyages at sea, it was a necessity to prevent the rice from spoiling.
Thus, it was common to wrap the rice in triangular shapes. They then stored the rice cakes in open air, hanging by bunches. The packaged shape helped to reduce the moisture from the cooked rice. Moreover, the tight leaf packaging prevented insects such as flies from contaminating the rice.
Homemade Ketupat RecipeDifficulty: Easy
Ketupat – Wrapped rice cakes that are the perfect accompaniment to any dish and bring out the nostalgic feelings of home. Perfect as a replacement for normal rice for a change of texture.
2 cups Jasmine rice
1/4 tsp salt
4 cups water
- Tools needed:
Saran plastic wrap
- Wash and drain rice. Add the rice, salt and water in a rice cooker and cook.
- Once the rice cooker turns to “warm”, open the lid. Fluff and press the rice together using a rice paddle or a spatula. The cooked rice for making the ketupat (rice cakes) should be slightly wetter than the standard steamed rice.
- Line the loaf pan with saran plastic wrap. Transfer the still warm rice to the pan. Press the rice with a rice paddle or spatula as you transfer the rice. After transferring all the rice, cover the top surface with another piece of saran wrap and keep pressing the flatten the surface.
- Once the rice is as packed as it can be, poke the top of the saran plastic wrap with skewer to create holes for steam to escape.
- Let the rice cake cool. You can speed up the process by putting it in the refrigerator.
- Once it has completely cooled, remove the rice cake from the mould. Remove the plastic wrap and cut the rice cake into 1 inch cubes. Serve with your favourite savoury dishes.
Ways to enjoy Ketupat
You can savour the glutinous rice cakes in any way that you prefer. It is most commonly served with rendang, serunding and even dipped plainly in kuah kacang (peanut sauce) and lontong.
Explore other popular Malaysian delights with Lokataste Recipe and more!