Num Chek Bok – Banana Pounded Cake
There are many kinds of Khmer cakes and desserts are made of banana. They are simple but has become the popular cake of Khmer people since long time ago. Num Chek Bok (Banana pounded cake) is among ancient Khmer cake, which the receipt has been passing through generations. ‘Bok’ is Khmer word meaning ‘pound’. The cake got its name because in the ancient time, the banana was fined by pounding in the mortar.
- One hand of banana (Chek Namva) of about 14 fruits. The well ripe banana will increase the natural sweet taste of the cake.
- 250g of rice paddy flour.
- 250ml of coconut milk.
- 200g of minced palm sugar or 250g of white sugar.
Banana after peeled off the skin, it must be fined. The traditional way is to pound it in the mortar. But for modern days, we can choose any way as long as the banana is minced. We can use a flat wooden board or something hard to press the banana. Or use the header part of a big flat knife, tapping on banana fruits.
After the banana is fine, add the rice paddy flour, coconut milk, sugar, and a little bit salt. Then start to mix them well together. The coconut milk should add slowly, because we need the mixture stay thick, not watery. In case all the coconut milk already added, but the mixture is too thick, then we need to add some more water. We might have to taste the sweet level of the cake by dipping our finger into the flour mixture and taste, add more sugar if you feel it’s not sweet enough.
Num Chek Bok must be steamed to be cooked. It’s easy if you have the steaming pan. After all the mixture will be stored in the aluminum mold which is produced for making cake. On the fire, place a frying pan contains about 500ml of water, then place a small dish at the middle as support object to place the mold on top. Then the frying pan must be covered. Just about 20mn later, Num Chek Bok is cooked. During this time, must pay attention to the water in the frying pan, need to add more if it getting dry.
Num Chek Bok is cut into pieces for serving. It’s also wrapped in banana leaf. You might sometimes find the rectangular flat cake wrapped in banana leaf, selling in some tourist sites, it’s Num Chek Bok or the pumpkin cake which aslo prepare in the same way, and they are usually selling together.