ON cooler nights, a warm bowl of sweet tang yuan (glutinous rice balls in syrup) can be very comforting.
In Taman Paramount, Petaling Jaya, Matthew Lee, 34, serves bowls of tang yuan and plates of mua chee (glutinous rice pieces with peanut) in the evenings to a growing crowd.
He started the dessert business last December at Kedai Makanan MT Pak Lok, offering three tang yuan variations.
The smaller glutinous rice balls have no filling while the bigger ones have either a peanut or black sesame filling.
Containing a generous amount of filling, the tang yuan melts in the mouth with each bite.
I was delightfully surprised by the delicate texture as the glutinous rice balls are softer than the others I’ve tried.
Crunchy, chopped peanuts provide a contrasting texture to the soft glutinous balls.
Customers can choose to have them served in a basic syrup or one that is flavoured with ginger.
Lee, who is a contractor by day, prepares the syrup by boiling gula melaka and brown sugar.
The brown sugar syrup is milder while the version with ginger packs a spicy punch.
Lee said the family-run business was started 40 years ago by his grandmother in Port Klang.
He said he grew up helping out at his mother’s stall in Bukit Tinggi, Klang, and wanted to bring the treats to the people of Petaling Jaya.
Mua chee can be sticky but Lee said his family’s recipe for the glutinous rice snack gives it a dense texture.
This enables the powdered roasted peanuts and grated coconut to adhere to the mua chee.
His version also features a soft hint of sesame oil which gives a tantalising contrast to the sweet coating.
The portions are generous and enough for sharing.
Open from Monday to Saturday from 6pm to 10pm, the stall usually has lines of customers waiting to eat in or take away.
A small serving of mua chee costs RM5, a medium-sized serving is RM6 while a big portion is priced at RM7.
Tang yuan without filling costs RM3.50 with 18 balls per bowl.
Tang yuan with peanut or sesame filling is also priced at RM3.50 but consists of only two pieces per bowl.