Now that it's Ramadhan, numerous foodstalls selling many types of cakes, sweets and savory foods have been set up at various places in Brunei. Ironically, during the fasting month, deliciously prepared dishes seem to abound everywhere in preparation for the breaking of fast at sunset. I suppose the abstinence from food makes us think about it the whole day! Well, I can't speak for others but that's what happens in my case...
One of the more popular sweets sold at these foodstalls is called Bomb Cakes or "Kuih Bomb" in local lingo. They're sesame-covered balls containing a sweet filling but are not in actual fact cake-like in texture. No, they don't explode in your mouth as you bite into them either! I'm not really certain about the origin of the name, but I presume it came from the fact that the balls have a tendency to explode and splatter the (hot) contents everywhere if you happen to fry them in very hot oil. So remember, always low heat.
As mentioned, the outer part of the balls are traditionally covered in sesame seeds while the filling can be anything from red bean paste, or peanut paste to sweet, freshly grated coconut. I, however, wanted a modern take on these bomb cakes and my natural love for chocolate means that this ingredient would have to be incorporated in there somewhere. Why not chocolate as the filling, and hey, while we're at it, why not make the ball chocolate-flavored as well? Okay, so I'm guilty of choc-addiction but I did make one healthy concession - I covered the balls with flax seeds. I thought the nutty taste of flax would complement the chocolateness of the dough and filling, and I wasn't off the mark.
This is a very simple recipe, you only need a bowl and your hands to mix all the ingredients together. The balls are best eaten while still warm because you'd want to feel the sensation of melted chocolate oozing out of the ball as you bite into one. A word of caution, this is definitely NOT a first date food! (Although I must say, if your date's really into you, then he/she will probably find the messiness quite adorable).
Makes 8-10 medium sized pieces
140g glutinous rice flour
1/2 tablespoon cornflour
2 tablespoons cocoa powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
120 ml water
100g chocolate, cut into 1/2 inch chunks
about 50g flax seed, enough to cover cakes
oil, for frying
1. Mix together rice flour, cornflour, cocoa powder and salt in a bowl. Slowly add water onto the mixture and knead flour with your hands until it becomes a soft dough. It should be slightly moist but not sticky. If the dough is too dry, a little more water.