Asian Raw Coconut Pudding with Gula Melaka Syrup

Asian raw coconut pudding with Gula Melaka Syrup

I’ve been eating and making so many Western sweets (cakes, tarts, pies etc) lately that its been ages since I’ve last had an asian dessert. I actually grew up on South East Asian deserts and my love for all things sweet stemmed from there. My childhood favs were Sweet potato soup, Chendol, Tao suan, Bo Bo Cha Cha, Nine Layer Kueh, Cheng Teng, Chinese Waffles, Yam paste (Orh-ni), Chendol, Durian Penyat…just to name a few! So when I visited Penang a couple of weeks ago, all it took was a bowl of chendol (OMG TO DIE FOR) to send me on an Asian dessert eating spree!

While seeking out the deserts in Penang with a vengeance, I couldn’t help but keep thinking of how to recreate healthier, vegan and even raw versions at home. So one of the first things I made when I came back from Penang was my take on an Asian coconut pudding – vegan style. Well I wanted to make it raw but after a few failed attempts at dissolving coconut palm sugar to a consistency I wanted, I gave up and used Gula Melaka instead.

Whether you’re a Singaporean or not, I do hope you try out this desert because its 1) REALLY EASY TO MAKE 2) FREAKING DELICIOUS 3) Did I mention, FREAKING DELICIOUS???

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ASIAN RAW COCONUT PUDDING WITH GULA MELAKA SYRUP ( makes around 2 -3 parfaits)

WHAT YOU’LL NEED

Coconut Milk (Store bought or homemade version; see below)
Chia seeds
Vanilla essence
1 large mango
Bowl of jackfruit strips
Gula Melaka (a block of coconut palm sugar)
Pandan leaves

HERE’S HOW

1) Home-made coconut milk

Don’t worry if you don’t have the canned coconut milk, here’s a real easy way to make fresh, healthy coconut milk at home. And you don’t even need coconut flesh!

Simply blend 1 cup desiccated coconut with 2 1/2 cups warm water in a high speed blender.

Next pour the liquid in a nut milk bag and squeeze out the liquid (steps are similar to making nut milk). And ta-dah you get coconut milk! Lessen the water if you want it thicker vice verca.

Use the coconut milk immediately, or store it up to 2 days in an air tight container in the fridge. One thing to note – coconut milk tends to curd when refrigerated, so simply blend with more water or coconut water when you want to use it.

* Use GOOD quality desiccated coconut because it makes a huge difference to how your coconut milk will taste

2) Making the Pudding

Soak Chia seeds in chilled coconut milk to create a pudding. Add 1 – 2 tbs of chia seeds to around 2 1/2 cups of liquid. Add in 1-2 drops of vanilla essence. Leave in the fridge for around 30 min. Feel free to add more or less liquid  later on depending on how thick you want the pudding to be.

3) Making the Gula Melaka syrup

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While your chia pudding is thickening, you can make your Gula Melaka syrup. Grab a bunch of pandan leaves and tie them together using an extra pandan leaf. Make sure its tight so that the leaves don’t start floating in the syrup. I used one block of Gula Melaka and 3/4 cup water and brought it to boil under a low fire.

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Keep stirring the Gula Melaka syrup as you go along until the syrup thickens to your desired consistency and all the small bits are dissolved. You’ll only need a little bit for the recipe, so refrigerate the rest in a bottle when it cools.

4) Getting the fruits ready

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Cube your mangoes. Half the mango by slicing along its seed to get a two halves. Use a knife to cut checkered patterns on the flesh, being careful not to slice all the way through. Gently push the flesh from the center to turn the flesh inside out and you’ll see you  diced mango cubes. Slice the cubes in between the flesh and mango skin.   Or check out this link ,

Getting jackfruit strips is pretty tedious work because its time consuming. So I buy my strips from the wet market! Its way cheaper than the supermarket chains and its so much sweeter too! And I really love giving business to the old aunties and uncles =)

5) Layering your parfait

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Layer 1/3 of your glass with the chia pudding. Add a layer of mango cubes. Continue to add chia pudding till its around 3/4 full. Add lots of jackfruit strips to top off the parfait. Drizzle with Gula Melaka and you’re ready to serve!

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Enjoy this and let me know how your parfait goes!

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Ee Beng Vegetarian Restaurant – Penang

DSCN8813While researching on Vegetarian/Vegan food to eat in Penang, I came across Luke’s glowing (Hungry Ang Mo’s) recommendation    of Ee Beng Vegetarian Restaurant. Since it was also in the Georgetown area where I was staying, I knew I had to pay a visit.

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I went during lunch time and instead of going to the restaurant, I went for the self service mix vegetable rice sets.

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Al the dishes looked so good!! I went back and forth many times thinking what to add to my plate haha..And yes, it tasted as good as it looked. Was so stuffed after.

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Travelling with a non-vegetarian companion is a little more troublesome but my bf and I managed to make it work. We would go for breakfast/lunch/dinner at a veg place for me , followed by someone else for him. When we were at Ee Beng, he kept picking at my food because ,quoting him “wah, this vegetarian food is damm good!”

The bakery beside the restaurant sells very authentic chinese bakery buns…and a good number of them are vegetarian too!

By the way, check out more restaurant recommendations in Penang from Luke if you’re visiting Penang!

Mugshot Cafe & Rainforest Bakery – Penang

Hi all,

Sorry for the lack of posts recently. Have been really busy (and lazy!) of late :S! Promise

Anyway, I recently went for a short getaway to Penang, Malaysia. Penang is well-known for its authentic and delicious street hawker food and a place where Singaporeans and travellers alike flock to for gastronomic feasts. My best friend is from Penang and she has always told me that Singaporean hawker food will never compare to the food in her hometown. And after this trip, I have to say I agree with her!

While preparing for the trip, I was a little worried that I wouldn’t have much to eat there since hawker food is mostly non-vegetarian. So I did some research and asked around…and to my surprise, I found out that Penang is the vegetarian capital of Malaysia! WOOHOO ! Oh and the cafe culture scene is really booming there, so there you have it, the best of both worlds.

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Visited the much hyped about Mugshot Cafe at Chulia Street. And it certainly is the “In” place! We got there arounnd 11am on Sunday and it was PACKED with young hippy Penangites and travellers alike.

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DSCN8897Even before you taste the food, you can guess why the cafe is so popular. The rustic, umpretentious atmosphere of the cafe creates a warm and inviting ambience – perfect for brunch or tea!

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The menu is pretty simple – coffee. bagels. yogurt. A good break from all the local asian dishes we were indulging in. I still find it hard to go 100% vegan during my travels… especially when you’re travelling with non-veg/vegan companions. I gave in and tried the Yogurt with Jackfruit and Gula Melaka (coconut palm sugar syrup). THIS WAS HEAVENLY!!!!!! The yogurt was thick and not overly sweet and it was a match make in heaven with the Gula Melaka.

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My bf had the bagel with salmon and cream cheese and he loved it! The poppy seed bagel, which was baked in a traditional wood-fire oven, was the STAR. Judging from the empty plates on the other tables, I think most patrons were very very satisfied too! Look out our satisfied smiles below!

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After the meal, we popped by next door to the Rainforest Bakery, an artisan bakery that sells an extensive range of gourmet and vegan breads. The breads are baked fresh daily and are ALL ORGANIC. Read more about them on this review here

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I bought 2 loaves of bread back ( Fruit and Nut / Wholemeal ) to Singapore and it was GOOD. My dad ate a piece and couldn’t tell the difference between that and normal bread=) . Would definitely buy more the next time I’m there…plus, its really affordable.

They also sell a range of cakes, cookies and muffins (no pictures sadly) that aren’t vegan but I read from other reviews are pretty good.

Mugshot Cafe
302 Lebuh Chulia, Georgetown
T: (012) 405 6276

Rainforest Bakery
300 Lebuh Chulia, Georgetown
T: (04) 261 4641

June – Product round up

Hi All,

So sorry for the the lack of updates ! Know I was supposed to blog a bout my pre-holiday detox but unfortunately, I’ve been sick+busy this whole week 😦 ! I’ll definitely do an update on that post another time!

WIll be leaving for Penang tonight and I’m so grateful for this short break. Been it the kitchen way too much, it’ll be good to just relax for abit=) Before I leave, here’s a short post on my June product haul.

VITAMIX!!!!

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OMGAWDDDD BEST BUY OF THE YEAR!  Been lusting after a Vitamix for the longest time so when I got my pay in early June, I decided to bite the bullet and just invest in one! Highly encourage everyone who is into raw ,vegan foods…or even just good food in general to get one. Its high powered blades blend your food into smooth liquid in no time…even those rock solid items you take out from the freezer.

Just a personal self reflections here: Pretty amazed at how going on this journey has changed not only my diet but also me as a person. Back when I first started working, my priorities were so different… i lusted after the Chanels and Pradas and oh those beautiful new Celine bags. But now, i find myself placing less emphasize on material goods and more on wellbeing in general. well, just some personal ramblings here =X

Where to find : Balanced Living Asia
Price : $1,218 or $1,318 (Stainless steel) so far cheapest in SG

MEDJOOL DATES

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Love the July – Aug period in Singapore because its nearing Hari Raya and the supermarkets stock up on Medjool dates!! Woohoo…these are my fav so far! Juicy , moist and plump. Affordable too! Much better than the ones I buy at Mustafa.

Where to find : Supermarket chains like NTUC Fairprice, Cold Storage, Giant
 Price : $14.90 for 980g

KALE

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Finally got my hands on some KALE! This probably raises a few eyebrows if you’re not from Singapore….but well over here, Kale is really rare and expensive! The normal organic packets at Jasons’ and Sg Organics are going at around $12 – $14 for a few leaves and I really can’t bring myself to buy it. So when I spotted this at the Cold Storage near my place, I grabbed all 3 remaining packets on display. My bf commented that he has never seen anyone get so excited over vegetables hahah. Overall, I thought Kale has a really mild taste which is easy to eat raw. I prefer using it in salads then in smoothies because it makes my smoothies really ‘thick and fuzzy’. Maybe I’m just too used to having spinach? Anyway, Zen Xin Organics has has an online website and a store at Pasir Panjang market too that sells Kale

Where to find : Selected Cold Storage outlets and Zen Xin Organics
 Price : $14.90 for 980g

KALE POWDER

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If you can’t get your hands on Kale, how about some Kale Powder? Sprinkle some over your salads, mix it into your smoothies or in dips. Prefer adding this in my smoothies than the actual Kale.

Where to find : YES Natural
 Price : $14.80

KIMCHI

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This vegan Kimchi is SPICYYEEEEE!! But really delicious! I was holding a tissue in my hand and sniffling while eating this….the things you do for good food eh. It contains no onions or garlic too so its suitable for religious vegans.

Where to find : YES Natural
 Price : $7.80