This is a traditional Indonesian cake, called bolu kukus, or steamed cake. As the name indicates, it's steamed, not baked. After it's done, the cupcake will bloom and look like a flower. The cake itself is so soft and fluffy.


Recipe Summary

15 mins
25 mins
40 mins
20 cupcakes


Original recipe yields 20 servings
The ingredient list now reflects the servings specified
Ingredient Checklist


Instructions Checklist
  • Place a steamer insert into a saucepan and fill with water to just below the bottom of the steamer. Bring water to a boil. Line 20 small muffin cups or ramekins with paper liners.

  • Sift flour and baking soda together in a bowl.

  • Beat sugar, egg yolks, egg whites, and vanilla extract with an electric mixer in a separate bowl until very fluffy. Stir the flour mixture and soda in gradually; mix well. Place yellow, green, and red food coloring into 3 separate bowls. Mix about 4 tablespoons of batter into each bowl.

  • Fill the muffin cups 3/4-full with the original batter. Drizzle with the yellow, green, and red batters. Carefully place the muffin cups into the steamer. Place a clean kitchen cloth below the lid to prevent steam from dripping onto the cakes. Cook, covered, until tops spring back when pressed, about 20 minutes.

Nutrition Facts

118 calories; protein 2.9g 6% DV; carbohydrates 23.8g 8% DV; fat 1.2g 2% DV; cholesterol 51.2mg 17% DV; sodium 45.1mg 2% DV. Full Nutrition