Ondeh Ondeh

Second week of WFH + HBL. So far so good… managed to stay sane so far. I told myself that I have to count my blessings because it is a pandemic we are talking about after all, and not everyone is as lucky to be able to stay at home, to have a roof over our heads, to have food on our table, and in fact, to still have a job. Everyone’s situation is different, so I guess we will have to count our blessings in each of our own ways.

It has been totally crazy managing the boy’s HBL and the numerous calls that I have to make each day (not counting my husband’s), but then you suddenly realise that you are in control of your own time and you will just have to manage accordingly. Nobody is going to ask why you aren’t replying to emails anymore because for some of us, it’s only possible to do this during the kid’s nap time or at night, after the young ones’ energy has sapped out. Nobody is going to tell you you have to stay with your work till 6pm anymore because the truth is, I cannot be with my work most of the time during the day, but which also means for that short amount of time that I have, I will need to focus and get the most out of it. We are actually all superhumans, working adults especially, because we are forced to do so much more than we have ever done in our entire life. And it’s possible – tiring, but possible.

Having a five-year-old boy at home with us for an extended duration of time can be an interesting COVID-19 experience as well (although I may beg to differ on a difficult day).  He has not made any scenes about not being able to go out, and has never ever thrown any tantrums about having to stay at home. However, he is already planning ahead listing the things that he would like to do ‘once the virus is gone’ – show his friends some of the toys that he has, ask his friends to come to our house, bring the train map to school to show his friends. All desires and wishes that he has are, of course, detached from schoolwork and learning, but at least it is a very positive mindset that he has so that he has something to look forward to. It’s what we as adults could learn from as well.

Anyway, back to this recipe. I am not a big fan of ondeh ondeh, and am doing this only because I have wanted to use up the glutinous rice flour that’s been sitting in my cupboard for a while now. It was not too complicated to do, and the result was great, except that I should have stuffed a lot, a lot more gula melaka into those balls of dough before I cooked it. The reason why I didn’t do so was because I was worried that the brown sugar would all seep out from the dough while they were cooking in the water if there was too much of it inside. Having done it once through, I know there’s definitely a lot of room for a lot more next time. Can’t wait to try this again!


  • Coconut flake: 75g
  • Salt: 1/4 tsp + 1 tsp
  • Pandan leaves: 15 leaves, cut into short strips
  • Water: 75ml + 150ml
  • Glutinous rice flour: 100g, sifted
  • Tapioca flour: 40g, sifted
  • Caster sugar: 30g
  • Palm sugar: 100g, roughly chopped


  1. Combine coconut flakes, 1/4 tsp salt and 75ml water in a shallow dish. Microwave for 2min on high, stirring at every 30 seconds interval. Set aside.
  2. Blend pandan leaves with 150ml water. Sieve out pandan juice. Set aside.
  3. Combine glutinous rice flour and tapioca flour in mixing bowl. Stir in sugar and 1 tsp salt.
  4. Slowly knead in 150ml pandan water till smooth.
  5. Divide dough into 2 portions, rolling each up into an elongated shape. Divide further into 20g balls.
  6. Press a dent in the ball. Fill up with a cube of palm sugar then press to seal it up. Roll it into a smooth ball.
  7. Place balls into boiling water. Swirl with a stirrer to prevent sticking. They are ready when they start to float onto the surface of the water.
  8. Scoop out and place onto the coconut flakes. Coat evenly with flakes to serve.

Makes about 20 balls.

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