Saturday, 22 January 2011

My experience with the Jeneket / Jenny Cake

It was a coincidence that when DH bought our favourite banana fritters at the nearby coffee-shop that he chanced upon Jeneket / Jenny Cake, which we haven't had for a long time. The last time I had this tea snack was when a colleague brought it to work to share when I was still working (which was months back).

These Jeneket / Jenny Cake brought back fond memories of my late grandma making them for my aunts & uncles, including me (I was brought up by my grandma). So I got all excited when DH bought two pieces of these, along with our banana fritters, two weeks ago. Then he suggested that I start learning making the Jeneket / Jenny Cake. Dooosh!!

I tried giving excuses that it was more economical to buy rather than making them, and told him that the dough would yield too much for us. Excuses, excuses, excuses... He knew I was bull****ting. So I secretly called my mum up to ask for the recipe to see for myself if this snack was an easy task. I was a bit stunned when mum began to explain about the consistency, the texture, proofing the dough etc.

Okay, maybe I should not have been too adventurous to try. I haven't seen any of my aunts or even my mum, attempting the Jeneket / Jenny Cake. And here I was, an amateur home-baker trying to make something, which my grandma probably took years to do it right.

To be honest, ever since I got the recipe, I'd been scrutinizing it daily. I was apprehensive about a particular ingredient - potas - which I was totally clueless. I initial thought, "what the heck is this?" And this ingredient was the key ingredient to make the snack right. Neither my aunt nor mum knew the translation in English.

Summing up my courage after the Macarons project the other day, I went to the baking store and asked the staff (who were already familiar with this face of mine) what "potas" is. With so much hype about the "potas" between my aunt, my mum & myself over the past few days, I came to realize that "potas" was nothing more than................ Bicarbonate Soda aka Baking Soda. There on the label was written "Potash" (duh!). -__-. To thhink I had the ingredient in my pantry all along. (Double Dooosh!!)

As soon as I came back from the store (no, I did not buy another bottle of baking soda aka potash, as we all know now), I prepared the dough for Jeneket / Jenny Cake. As it needed to proof, I've to start early.

Left it to proof for 4hrs (some recommended overnight proofing) then I tested the dough to fry. It didn't turn out as I expected. I thought I might have put too much flour and too little time to proof. Texture was thick and hard after frying.

I decided to proof the dough again for another 4hrs. This time I used a round cutter to cut the dough and flatten it slightly. Walla! This time it was just right, although I reminded myself to lessen the flour just a teeny-bit next time. (What? Did I say next time?)

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