Friday, 12 October 2012

Chinese Chews

How often do we make cakes and things from other bloggers? - I know I admire lots, often comment and "pin" them, but only sometimes do they actually make it to the table. Recently I have made several delicious treats recommended by other blogger and this was the case when I saw these Chinese Chews over at Hotly Spiced.  Many years ago my mother-in-law used to make these (or a variation of) which were "the man's" favourites (he has requested them several times) - it has taken me all this time to get around to making them.

I had a little helper on Sunday afternoon and pottering in the kitchen they were the perfect thing to make  to while away a Sunday afternoon. I did have to scrounge around in the cupboard to find all the dried fruit bits and pieces - there were a few half full packets of stuff twisted tightly and held in place with a peg - you know the type, the ones that seem to get pushed to the back and forgotten about (but I think any dried variations would do at a pinch).

When the man returned from a hard day out on the golf course, he inspected the afternoon's work keenly - he looked at the squares still on the rack cooling, he looked back at me questioningly - surely not his face said.  He tested them immediately and exclaimed CHINESE CHEWS! "They taste just like mum used to make -  how wonderful.  So nice to be appreciated. His Mother's Chinese Chews apparently were the talk of the town and were very well travelled. They were taken to badminton tournaments all around Victoria.  He tells me as soon as the cake tin was opened in the badminton hall and offered around they would be gone in a minute and you had to be double quick to get one or you would miss out.

So here are the ingredients - mine looked a little different to Hotly Spiced but I am sure they tasted just as good.

2 eggs
1 cup brown sugar
75g (3 oz) melted butter
1 tspn vanilla essence
1/8 tspn salt
1 1/2 cups flour
1 tspn baking powder
3/4 cup dried dates chopped
3/4 cup walnuts, chopped
3/4 cup crystalised ginger, chopped
1/2 cup rolled oats
I had a good helper to do the chopping


and still more chopping....

And Adding the dried dates

And to do all the stirring

And of course

the spoon was just

too too tempting 

And the smell of those cooked chews .......
How to do it

I used my tupperware slice tray that needs no greasing but if you have a normal tray grease thoroughly.
  • Beat eggs and sugar together and then add melted butter and vanilla essence
  • In another bowl gently mix the dry ingredients and then add all the wet ingredients to it and mix 
  • Mix in the fruit and nuts
  • Bake in a preheated oven at 180C for 30 - 40 minutes test with a skewer (if it comes out clean it is cooked). 
  • Cut into squares while still hot.
I am entering this in Belleau Kitchen's Random Recipes No. 21- Store cupboard finds as my dates only saw the light of day to join in for this challenge.  


  1. They sound rather yummy - but what is the significance of the name "chinese chews"?

    1. Absolutely no idea apart from the fact they are lightly chewy and they have ginger in them. Paul's mum use to make a lot of things with ginger in them, I also remember her ginger fluff sponge must get that recipe from her too. Its her birthday today might make some and take them this morning.

  2. I too was going to ask why Chinese Chews but I guess the name is irrelevant when they're clearly so yummy. I live stuff like this where you can throw in anything you can find in the store cupboard. Love your little slave too. Always handy to have one if those. Did you find her in the back if the cupboard too? Thanks for entering. A great entry!!

    1. Thanks Dom once made they are now to be my new tradition.

  3. I'm so glad you made these! And your granddaughter is so gorgeous. What fun to cook with her. My family loved these so much they want me to make them again. They're a great snack and with all the fruits and nuts, they have to be good for you - better than snacking on chips for sure. And these are such a good way to use up all those half-empty packets of dried fruits and nuts we all have stuffed at the back of the pantry. Christmas is the culprit! And you can use fresh dates and the ginger can be preserved instead of crystalised. xx

    1. Thanks for the inspiration and the recipe! We thoroughly enjoyed our time together one on one and had so much to show for it afterwards.

  4. I'm having a serious date addiction right now, and by luck have all the other ingredients in the cupboard... I'm going to make these NOW!!! Thank you, the perfect home from school snack!

  5. I've never made Chinese Chews before, but my husband is a big date and ginger fan, so now that you've shared the recipe I'll have to give them a whirl - they look delicious!

    1. Thanks for popping by - give them a go - hubby will love you forever.

  6. This is wonderful! I get a lot of my inspirations from other bloggers and I have had the joy of trying out some of their recipes. I've never had Chinese chews. This something I must try. I love having little mini sous chefs helping around the kitchen how adorable. I love it! : )

    1. I love reading other blogs too. I loved my little helper! You will love the Chinese chews.

  7. these sound delicious. I have never heard of chinese chews but they sound perfect with a cup of tea. I love the pics of the little helper! I have one too and it is such fun isnt it!

  8. Little helpers are such a joy - she took a nice little bag of chews home to her own house too.

  9. Mmmm love ginger in biscuits/chews. Your little helper is so cute - the spoon licking brings me back to my childhood!

    1. Licking the spoon as a child was always the best part. We always waited patiently and hoped mum would not scrape the bowl too cleanly!