Scallions or spring onions are versatile. Finely chopped spring onions are a flavourful garnish to a finished dish, but using it in cooking can enhance the taste profile.


550g kampung chicken
25g ginger
25g spring onion
3 cloves garlic
15g fresh coriander
2 tbsp vegetable oil
1 tsp sesame oil

1½ tbsp sugar or to taste
¼ tsp salt
½ tsp pepper
1 tsp cornflour
1 tbsp Chinese rice wine (optional)
1 tbsp light soy sauce

Clean chicken well. Pat dry. Place ginger, spring onion, garlic and coriander into a food processor. Process briefly into a coarse paste. Dish out and combine with seasoning.

Place chicken on a steaming plate and spoon over half of the ginger paste mixture.

Rub it all over the chicken.

Put the plate of chicken into a preheated steamer. Cover and steam over high heat for 25-30 minutes or until cooked through.

Place the remaining ginger paste in a small bowl. Heat the vegetable oil and sesame oil until just hot. Pour the hot oil onto the ginger paste and allow to sizzle for a while. Spoon the hot sauce over the cooked chicken and serve at once.

Recipes with scallions: Pretty Flower Mantau


300g pau flour
½ tsp double-action baking powder
75g castor sugar
30g vegetable shortening
60g pumpkin paste
10g instant dried yeast
125-130ml lukewarm water

Glaze and filling
1 tbsp sesame oil
1 bunch spring onions, finely sliced
salt and pepper

Stir yeast into warm water and set aside to froth. Sift flour and double-action baking powder into a mixing bowl. Stir in sugar, vegetable shortening, and finally the yeast mixture. Mix in pumpkin paste and using a dough hook mix on low speed into a dough.

Continue to knead until the dough is soft, smooth and pliable.

Turn out the dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead lightly with a sprinkling of additional flour if it is too soft. Divide the dough into two equal portions.

Roll out each half of the dough into a long log and cut into small pieces or scale into 20g pieces. Roll each piece into a ball. Using a rolling pin, flatten the ball and roll out into a thin circle.

Place a dough circle on the work surface. Place another dough circle below it, overlapping the edges slightly. Arrange three more circles of dough below the first two pieces. You will end up with five circles arranged in a straight vertical line. Use a fork and press down lightly over the overlapping sections to secure all the circles in place.

Glaze lightly with sesame oil and sprinkle chopped spring onion liberally over the pieces of dough, then sprinkle with salt and pepper. Starting from the bottom, roll up the five circles of dough into a Swiss roll. Once the Swiss roll is formed, roll a little with the palm of your hand to secure the seam.

Using a pastry cutter or sharp knife, cut each Swiss roll in the centre into two equal pieces. Each one will be in the shape of a flower. Repeat with the remaining pieces of dough to create more flower mantau.

Place each bun, cut side down, into a paper case. Arrange on a tray and cover with cling film. Set aside in a warm place to rise until double in size, 15-20 minutes.

Steam the flower rolls in batches over rapid boiling water on high heat for 10-12 minutes. Once done, turn off the heat but leave the buns in the steamer for another minute before removing from steamer. (This will prevent the buns from shrinking as they cool.) Transfer to a wire rack to cool.

Recipes with scallions: Delightful Tapioca Spring Onion Snack Balls


200g tapioca
80g grated coconut
1 tbsp chopped fresh red chili
35g chopped spring onion
2 tsp sugar
½ tsp salt
dash of pepper

60g rice flour
30g glutinous rice flour
1 tsp custard powder
½ tsp salt
½ tsp sugar
½ tsp baking powder
¼ tsp bicarbonate of soda
150ml water

Peel tapioca and soak in water for 20 minutes, then cut into small sections. Place on a steaming plate and steam till soft. Remove and mash with a fork till mushy.

Add grated coconut, red chilli, spring onion, sugar, salt and pepper to taste. Mix combined batter ingredients well and set aside.

Take a heaped tablespoon of tapioca mixture and roll into a neat ball.

Dip into the batter and deep-fry in medium hot oil till the balls are golden brown and crispy on the outside.