This is my grandmother. She is now 79-years-old.\u00a0Since young, here's what I remember most about her - she would always make us scrumptious meals and traditional teo chew kuih, such as the sticky rice dumplings and the teo chew chai kueh. Not to exaggerate, but I have never tried rice dumplings and chai kueh other than those made by my grandmother. This is how delicious the traditional kuih is! As I grew up, I had the opportunity to get involved in the making of the teo chew chai kueh. As I was helping my grandmother and my mother, I started to wonder how my grandmother started her first teo chew chai kueh.\u00a0My mother then unfolded the life story of my grandmother. My Grandmother's Journey With The Teo Chew Chai Kueh My grandmother would always ensure the quality of the dough before making the teo chew chai kueh. As healthy and loving as she is in the photos, she actually faced tremendous hardship in her life. At the age of seven, when most would be enjoying their childhood, my grandmother had to spend her days weeding lawns with her mother. When she thought her life would improve at least a little after her marriage, she continued to endure other life challenges. Out of desperation, she started to plant vegetables and my mother helped out by watering the vegetation (just as how my grandmother used to help her mother during her childhood). She also started to venture into selling food and drinks to the workers at the construction sites. She packed char kuey teow and drinks and cycled to the construction sites for delivery. Making Chai Kueh Out Of A Mother's Love Was this how my grandmother ventured into making the teo chew chai kueh in the first place? As I was expecting such utterance from my mother, the answer was totally unexpected! My grandmother learned to make chai kueh because her children loved it whenever their grandmother brought them some from the town. Though my mother and her siblings savoured their chai kueh so much, the chai kueh went stale sometimes when their grandmother brought them to their house. Out of her love for her children, my grandmother started making chai kueh from scratch. It turned out to be a huge success. That's when my grandmother started selling the teo chew chai kueh. Read more about how we as mothers can be the pillar of our family. Linking Three Generations Through\u00a0The Teo Chew Chai Kueh A close-up look at how my grandmother, mother and my sister made teo chew chai kueh. To ensure the skin of the chai kueh is chewy, my grandmother would put in tremendous amount of hard effort in stirring the dough. She would need to wake up extremely early to stir-fry the fillings like the ku chai (chives) with dried shrimps. To alleviate my grandmother's burden, my mother would help out my grandmother to make the chai kueh during my childhood years. As the adults were busy making the chai kuey, my siblings and I would run and play around. We would also look at how my grandmother made magic out of the pink dough and filling to make tantalising chai kueh. As we grew up, we started to get involved in the making process. That's when I realised it was such a hurdle to make a nice chai kueh. Believe me, it was total chaos during my first time making the chai kueh. I could not\u00a0manage to have my fillings nicely covered in the dough. As clumsy as I was, my grandmother was very patient in teaching us the correct method. Eventually, I gave up on the making. Instead, I helped out with steaming and applying oil on the chai kueh. I am sorry, grandma! Since then, this is how we bond with our grandmother - chatting while having our hands messing with the little pink chai kueh. My grandmother would share her childhood stories and memories while we shared about our daily lives. Ingredients Filling Ingredients \t300-400 g chives \t3 tablespoons dried shrimp \t1 tablespoon alkaline water \tsalt Skin Ingredients \t300 g wheat starch flour \t300 g tapioca flour \t750 g hot boiling water \t2 tablespoons of oil \tpink colouring (optional) Method \tPreheat oil in a large wok or skillet. \tAdd in and cook the shrimp for 30 seconds. \tLet the dried shrimp cool for a while and chop the chives. \tAdd in and mix the chopped chives, dried shrimp, salt and alkaline water. \t Mix and stir the wheat starch flour, tapioca flour, salt and colouring. \t Pour in boiling water and use a spatula to stir and combine. \t Knead the mixture into a rough dough when it is not so hot. \t Cover and set aside the dough for at least 20 minutes. \tDivide the dough into 25 portions. \tFlatten each portion and scoop about 2 tablespoons of filling in the middle of the portion. \tPinch the edge to seal and repeat with the rest. \tLine the steamer with banana leaves brushed with some oil and steam for 15 minutes. \tLet them cool off about 10 minutes before serving. Savouring Both The Taste and Memory Of The\u00a0Teo Chew Chai Kueh My grandmother smiling broadly during her 79th birthday celebration (Photo credit: Miranda So's Instagram) After her 30 years in making the chai kueh, my grandmother eventually retired due to her shoulder and back pain. Did she make a big fortune out of the chai kueh? No, as she sold the chai kueh at an affordable price with passionately prepared ingredients and fillings. In return, she formed lasting relationships with her customers who still keep in touch with her till today. Yet, my grandmother would occasionally make the chai kueh for her grandchildren and her great-grandchild. Though I have not managed to enjoy chai kueh as often as I could, the taste and memory of the teo chew chai kueh still linger in my mind. And nowadays, whenever my grandmother sends us some chai kueh, I am reminded of how we used to make the chai kueh together at her house. The teo chew chai kueh has certainly become the linking point between my grandmother and I. Stay healthy and we shall meet each other when the COVID-19 is over.