I am a scientist who loves to cook because there are many similarities between working in a lab and cooking in a kitchen. I love to share my cooking experience with you and to inspire others to cook.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012


Move aside nutella; get behind me, peanut butter; make way, strawberry jam and your entourage of fruit jams. Butter, stick around (pun intended). Here comes the new kid on the blog --- Kaya.

What's a Kaya? According to Wikipedia, there are more than 20 definitions. The most interesting one being "Marijuana" in Jamaican. Surely I am not talking about that kind of Kaya.

I am talking about the other Kaya that is translated to "RICH" and, boy, this a rich food item that everyone from poor to rich enjoys. It is a regionally confined food item that hasn't been spread around the world. The reason is simple - "Freshly Made". You can buy them at a grocery store in Chinatown but they are always a little off or too sweet.

So what's Kaya? It is a Jam that you put on a toast.

There are only three ingredients. Count with me. 1, 2......3.

3 ingredients come together to form what I called "Golden Nectar" (I should trademark this).

What are these ingredients?

Eggs, Coconut Cream/Milk, and Sugar.

(make one cup of kaya, recipe courtesy of Pat, http://chewsome.wordpress.com/)

5 whole eggs
1/2 cup of sugar
1 can of coconut cream

1. Warm up the coconut milk while it is still in its can. Set aside.
2. Beat the eggs until very smooth.
3. Add the sugar and continue beating. Make sure there is no sugar lumps.

Should've beat the egg until smooth before adding the sugar. Don't be scared by the amount of  sugar

4. Boil a pot of water. When the water starts boiling, turn the heat down to a gentle simmer.
5. Set up a steaming mechanism as showed in the photograph. You can be creative with your own methods.
(The key in making a good kaya is to avoid cooking the egg in direct heat. Instead, you want to use the steam as heat source. The top layer of the water should be at least 2 inches bellow the top pan.)

6. Transfer the egg and sugar mixture to the pan and keep stirring gently.
7. When the sugar has melted, add the coconut cream a few tablespoons at a time.
(Add enough coconut cream until it reaches your desired flavor. I added about 3/4 of a can of the coconut cream).

8. Don't forget to keep stirring the whole time.
9. Keep cooking until the volume of the mixture has reduced significantly and the kaya begins to stick to the spoon.

10. Store immediately in the refrigerator.
11. In fact, go toast a piece of bread and spread it with warm kaya now!


If you haven't had Kaya before, please bug me until you have tried this "Golden Nectar". I was lucky enough to have multiple food tasters and one recurring feedback that I hear was that "it taste like butter".  I very really thought of it that way but I do see the odd resemblance in taste. What I really like about homemade kaya is that I can control the sweetness. I really don't like food that is over-sweetened and making my own kaya makes sure it does not happen.


  1. I love this post!! The intro was very enticing and the pics were mouth-watering. Keep it up! :)

  2. Deming - the pictures are looking great. Now - why haven't you brought this in to lab to share?