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Thursday, September 19, 2013

Hakka Yam Abacus 客家算盘子, and Happy Mid-Autumn Festival !

Today is Mid-Autumn Festival, is a day for family reunion. Thus I would like to present this Hakka Yam Abacus to you as round yam abacus also represent reunion 团圆 and bring good prosperity especially for Hakka Chinese peoples who must have this dish during Chinese New Year.

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Don't know since when, my mother started to cook yam abacus during CNY as she said abacus is a Chinese calculator, like non stop counting money, LOL. Anyway, her version is Hokkien version, which look black as you know Hokkien dishes always like to season with dark caramel soy sauce for the dish to look black (that means it will taste Ho Chiak )
But I did not cook Hokkien way this time, I followed Hakka way, I got it inspired from this article I read in a Chinese newspaper.

spc11The other day, my sister brought to me a good home grown yam from her in law house. I immediately use it to cook this Hakka Yam Abacus. I prefer more yam taste, so you can see my recipe is using less flour.



I can't find the Hakka type of yellow firm tofu from the market, thus I replaced with this five spices tofu.

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Hakka Yam Abacus 客家算盘子
(recipe source: by Sonia aka Nasi Lemak Lover)
*serves 5

For yam abacus
600g yam, cubed
spc11 100g tapioca flour
100g hot water


  1. Steam the yam till soft, mash finely while hot.
  2. While yam still hot, add in tapioca flour and water, and knead till a pliable dough ( difference type of yam has difference texture, please adjust water and flour accordingly).
  3. Roll into long log and cut into small chunks.
  4. Roll the chunks in between your palms and roll round into balls.
  5. Use your index finger to make a indentation in the middle.
  6. Bring a pot of water to rolling boil. Drop in yam abacus balls and cook till it floats.
  7. Drain away hot water and rinse with cold tap water. Drizzle over some cooking oil to coat it evenly. Set aside.
  8. If you are not intend to use it immediately, put into a zip lock bag and store in the freezer.

To stir fry Hakka Yam Abacus

1 quantity of above ready yam abacus (~900g)
1 five-spices tofu, sliced
spc7 copy 15g dried shredded squid, soak in hot water for 30mins
3pcs dried black fungus (wood-ear mushroom), soaked and sliced
30g dried shrimps (Hae bi), soak for 5mins and chopped
150g minced meat
4 cloves garlic, chopped

1 red chili, julienned
2 spring onions, chopped

1tbsp light soy sauce
1tsp salt or to taste
1tsp sugar or to taste


  1. Heat cooking oil in a wok, sauté garlic till aroma.
  2. Add in dried shrimps and stir fry till aroma.
  3. Add in minced meat, cook till color changed
  4. Add in tofu, squids, black fungus, cook till mix well.
  5. Add in yam abacus and seasonings, add extra water if necessary. Cook till mix well.
  6. Garnish with red chili and spring onion, serve warm.

This year, I made mooncakes using this special golden syrup for making mooncake. hma1

Also bought a new mooncake mould , still using the old recipe herehma2

I use the leftover lotus paste to shape few bear bear mooncake ^_^ . Skin recipe using old recipe here, add charcoal powder into dough for eyes and nose. 1tsp spoon to shape nose area, and use toothpick to shape the mouth and ear.hma

I wishing all have a Happy Mid-Autumn Festival 中秋節快樂 !!hma3 copy


Li Shuan said...


Li Shuan said...

哈哈! 我第一! 第一!
我好喜欢算盘子,差不多要轮到这个做这个了。。。快了快了! 先吃你这个卖相超好的算盘子。

missyblurkit said...

Happy mid autumn! Your yam abacus looks yummy. I like it with more yam taste too unfortunately the ones we eat outside is too much flour.

鲸鱼蓝蓝蓝 said...


Somewhere in Singapore said...

Happy Mid Autumn Festival to you and your family :)

Somewhere in Singapore said...

The bear bear is so cute...

Mel said...

Yam abacus sure seem to be delicious though I dont think i have eaten this before. Alot of work involving to cook this dish. Have a wonderful Mid-autumn festival with your family.

Somewhere in Singapore said...

I like abacus, but it involve a lot of work...

eileenlml.blogspot.com said...




Crystal Loh said...



Little blue said...

Happy Mid-Autumn Festival~

Veronica said...

Happy Mid-Autumn Festival to you Sonia. Love your teddy bears, they look so cute.

Esther Lau said...

Sonia, Happy Mid Autumn Festival!!! :)

Jozelyn Ng said...

Yam abacus is my favourite but I never made it at home before! Thanks for sharing! Like the bear mooncake too, so cute!

Victoria bakes said...

This is spectacular.... I. Love it with my chili!

A Taste of Memories-- Echo's Kitchen said...


Unknown said...


ann low said...

I also love to Hakka abacus cook in this way. Very delicious!

divya said...

Excellent and mouthwatering dish... Pics look delicious.

shan said...

迟来的中秋节快乐 ^^

CQUEK said...

This recipe looks amazing, if I am feeling adventurous I will be testing this out!

Unknown said...


Small Kucing said...

Paiseh...I hv heard of this but nevrr ate before

Joanne T Ferguson said...

Happy Mid-Autumn Festival to you and your family Sonia, true!
LOVE your mooncakes and never heard of your dish before, so thank you for allowing me to learn something new! Cheers! Joanne

Unknown said...

I simply love your home made yam abacus! Happy Mooncake Festival!

Anonymous said...

Hai sis,
Iam lavi, Iam learning baking through ur blog,ur works are amazing, Iam planning to bake a Minnie mouse cake for my daughter's 3 rd birthday, can u please suggest me a icing receipe which can withstand this hot weather, thank u once again for ur wonderful guidance for each receipe with love and care

Aunty Young(安迪漾) said...

although I'm Hokkian, I am impressed by your yam abacus, one day 'll try it out. Thanks for your clear pic sharing .

Anonymous said...

Never seen any of sort of this yam cake before....
i thought it was another species of yam, kinda shame on me...
this hakka version is really delightfull!

Cecilia Yap said...

Happy Mid Autumn Festival to u and family. I like this dish too.

PH said...

I love this dish very much! But you know lah, always too lazy to make it myself :)

Ana Regalado said...

Sonia , yam is taro ? This dish looks really delicious ! The flavor combination sounds wonderful :) Love the mooncakes as well !

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