I wish I could capture the fragrance of bánh bò nướng (honey comb cake) while it's still in the oven and let you smell the sweet and unique flavor of pandan and the sweet and rich aroma of coconut milk. It's this distinctive fragrance in addition to the soft chewy texture that makes bánh bò nướng irresistible.
This bánh bò nướng has a crispy surface covered in roasted sesame which the true bánh bò nướng doesn't have. But I love this seed and use it whenever appropriate. This is where you can infuse some of your creativity to add a personal touch.
RECIPE: Bánh Bò Nướng
1 bag (14 oz) Tapioca Flour
2 cups Sugar
2 bags Baking Powder
1/2 teaspoon Pandan Extract
1 can (400 ml) Coconut Milk
about 6 Pandan Leaves, optional
1 tablespoon Sesame Seeds, optional
Preheat the oven at 350' F.
Sift the flour and baking powder together. Set aside.
In a large bowl, lightly stir the eggs and sugar with a whisk or a fork so that no bubbles form. Remember to stir just enough to homogenize the whites and yolks. Over stirring the eggs can cause the cake to be flat.
Stir in pandan extract, and coconut milk, and flour mixture.
If you like the distinctive aroma of the fresh pandan leaves instead pandan extract, blend pandan leaves with coconut milk in a food processor.
Draining it through a fine strainer or a cloth bag and discard the pandan residue. Make 400 ml of pandan-coconut milk. Add a drop of pandan extract for the greener color, if preferred.
Use a strainer to strain the mixture into another bowl.
Brush oil on the baking pan. Pour the mixture into the baking pan. Sprinkle sesame seeds on top of the batter. Place the baking pan in the oven on the middle rack.
Bake for 50 to 60 minutes until the crust is golden and flaky. Insert a toothpick in the center of the cake for quick test to see if it's done. If the toothpick comes out dry and clean, the cake is done.
Remove the cake. Let it cool for a little bit before removing it from the baking pan.
Cut the cake into slices and enjoy it with a cup of hot tea or coffee.
Bonus: a video of my girls making Bánh Bò Nướng at age 2 1/2 and 4 years old.