Seri Muka

The Chinese were among the earliest traders who came to Malaysia during the 15th century.  Legend has it that a Chinese princess was sent as a gift(!) to the Sultan or King of Melaka (a state in then Malaya)  in 1459.

The intermarriage between the princess and the Sultan formed the Peranakan community in Malaysia.  The Peranankans or descendants evolved to form the combination of a Chinese and Malay culture which had their own unique customs, food and language.

Peranakans are renowned for their food especially desserts which are called kuih in Malay.

Seri muka is a two-layered dessert.  The top layer is a green custard made from the extract of  pandan leaves and the bottom layer is steamed glutinous rice.  The result is a whole lot of deliciousness.

Here is a recipe for Seri Muka.  I have never attempted making Seri Muka but this recipe actually looks fairly easy so I may have to try it.

Malaysia was a British colony and still retains some of the customs from colonial times.   We still have tea around 4 pm in the afternoons and peranakan kuih are a popular item served alongside traditional tea sandwiches.

We move around a lot because of my husband’s job and I was lucky to have made some really good Malaysian and Singaporean friends when we lived in San Diego.

At our going away party, my good Singaporean friend, Phyllis made a huge tray of Seri Muka for us because she knew how crazy I am for it.

So now whenever I see or eat Seri Muka, I am always reminded of Phyllis who is not just an amazing cook but more importantly a fantastic person and friend.

8 comments to Seri Muka

  • Corinne  says:

    Darn it, I haven’t tried this. See I needed to read all of your posts before my recent trip to Asia! I did go to the Pernakan Museum in Singapore…I recommend it to all; it was great!

    • Lila  says:

      Well, you’ll just have to go back for a visit. :) The kuih and especially Seri Muka is definitely worth another visit. I’ll have to check out the Pernakan Museum the next time I’m in Singapore.

  • Phyllis Smith  says:

    What a great site you created, I enjoy it very much! Thank you for your kind words. Both Tim and myself misses the time we had in San Diego. Good friends are like family when you’re away from home. You and Mark must keep up the good work.

    • Lila  says:

      Thanks for your support Phyllis. Glad you enjoy the website. Hope you will keep checking back. There’s a few more days for the daily blog challenge and I will be posting more articles about travel when this challenge is done. :)

  • Contented Traveller  says:

    Great post and stunning photos. Not a great fan of Seri but .. I love looking at the stunning colours looking along the shelves

    • Lila  says:

      I know a lot of people find the peranakan kuih almost too sweet but I have a weakness for this kuih. Probably all the childhood memories it brings back. So many feelings and memories are associated with food. They are more than just what we eat when we’re hungry

  • Nana Prah  says:

    It looks like a light desert, not too sweet, but satisfying.
    Nana Prah

    • Lila  says:

      Nana, It is light and is the perfect bland of sweet and a little salty. It is delicious. Always great to hear from you. :)

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