Proof Of The PuddingPosted: February 16, 2011
I’ve noticed how bad I’ve been at updating this for the past few months. I’ve just been back home in the land of nasi lemak and while I haven’t been doing anything substantial, I’ve been really busy. I haven’t even really been spending much time in the kitchen because I’m lucky enough to have a fantastic cook for a mother.
That isn’t to say that I haven’t been productive in tiny doses. I finally succeeded in applying false eyelashes, which is a triumph I will continuously toot of as I once spent an hour in front of a mirror in frustration trying to glue eyelashes onto my eyelids but only managing to glue my eyes shut. I’ve also been reading for leisure again (oh literature! I’ve missed you!), watching countless movies and I’ve been working hard on expanding my wardrobe (not going as well as I would like). I’ve also been working on something for the blog, which actually have been put into effect. Have you noticed? I’m working on an obvious change soon so stay tuned! I just have to flex my CSS writing skills a little – it’s been a while!
I’ve been in the kitchen a few times, of course. A failed swiss roll experiment (little buggers are harder to make than they seem! Or I just had the wrong cake recipe), my trusty shortbread that turned on me because my mum’s KitchenAid is on the fritz and it spit out all my flour when it was mixing the batter leaving me with soggy shortbread (gah!), and a tepid attempt at one of my favourite Malaysian desserts which turned into a roaring success that I’ve made it numerous times now. I can now make do without referencing the recipe. It’s all in here (I’m tapping my temple and mouthing, “UNAGI” – kudos if you know where that’s from).
I of course, speak of sago pudding. I think it’s a Nyonya dessert and one that I thoroughly enjoy. I’ve been meaning to make it for a while now but never got around to it. Then I had a disappointing serve of sago pudding at a restaurant and it provoked my ire so I just had to make it myself to prove that HAH, I am better than this! Seriously, bad desserts are way worse than bad savoury dishes because you think, “Ahh, I’ll end my meal on a happy note with one of my favourite sweets!” then it comes out barely recognisable and I’m just baffled that someone had decided to ruin my meal, nay, my week, like that! How dare they??!
The recipe I used was based loosely on the one here but I guess I do have a few nuggets of wisdom to share from several successful executions of the dish.
+ Do not add sugar to the palm sugar. It tastes pretty fantastic on its own. In fact, I recommend adding a pinch of salt to it.
+ Also add a pinch of salt to the coconut milk.
+ Never ever leave the boiling sago unattended. Keep stirring it gently and squash out any clusters you see forming or it’s going to make your life more difficult than necessary.
+ Make sure to rinse the sago before boiling it. There’s tons of impurities in there!
+ You don’t have to make it in one giant mould, I quite liked it as individual serves. Way cuter and easier to serve! I used mini bowls and teacups!
+ Compress the sago when placed into the mould so it’s well packed. You don’t want to end up with loose pudding after popping off the mould.
+ Boil the palm sugar until it is thick. It’s like making a reduction. (Duh)
It isn’t really a difficult dessert to make by any means but it is tedious with all the rinsing, stirring, rinsing, and oh.. rinsing. You will get pretty sick of standing over the sink with a sieve full of cooked sago running under cold water.
However the pay off is totally worth it. That combination of the cool, silky pudding sliding down your throat and the perfect balance of salty and sweet dancing on your tongue is just heavenly.