Vietnamese Dessert Recipes

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Xoi Vo Recipe (Coconut Sticky Rice with Mung Beans) Recipe

First of all, chúc mừng năm mới (Happy New Year of the Horse!). A new, fabulous year is beginning, and to celebrate, I started the day very early this morning wrapping and rolling a lot of vegetarian eggrolls to ring in the New Year! I also prepared xôi vò, which is a popular Vietnamese snack consisting of coconut milk sticky rice and mung beans. Cậu Hoà (my uncle) is going to be stopping by today and I plan on serving this to him with green tea. It's his favorite.

Xôi vò is a very simple, easy snack to prepare. Simply soak mung beans (hulled and split yellow beans) and sticky rice separately ahead of time, then cook and steam the pandan-scented rice, coconut milk and a sprinkle of sugar. That's it. If you're Asian, you know how lightly sweetened Asian desserts are. If you're like my husband, "lightly sweet" is an understatement and you probably won't call this a dessert. Again, I guess it's a cultural thing. If you’re tasting xôi vò for the first time, consider it a nutritious, fragrant snack with a light hint of sweetness that pairs wonderfully with tea. 


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Tet Celebrations: Vietnamese Dessert Recipes Recipe

We're a week away from the Vietnamese New Year celebrations (called Tết). I've decorated the entrance of our home with cherry blossom flowers that I decorated with red envelopes that contain "lucky money", called lì xì. I've also picked up brand new dollar bills and placed them in the red envelopes to give to children. The tradition dictates that the first morning of the New Year, adults congratulate children on becoming a year older by giving them these lì xì envelopes.

Many Vietnamese desserts are served as well, before "offering" them to ancestors. I've gathered some of the Asian sweets that are prepared for this celebration. 


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Vietnamese Dessert with Lotus Seeds and Longans: Chè Sen Nhãn Recipe

According to the Lunar calendar, Tết (Vietnamese New Year) falls on January 30th, 2014. It's customary to serve chè (typical Vietnamese dessert) to offer to ancestors during prayers. Today's dessert recipe is chè sen nhãn. It's made from dried lotus seeds and dried longans, which are perfect for the winter season. 

I prepared a syrup sweetened with Chinese rock sugar. It can be thickened with tapioca starch but the quality of the dried lotus seeds and longans I used was so amazing, it was unnecessary. I feel very blessed because I always have family and friends bringing me delicious, exotic ingredients from their travels to Vietnam. I received lotus seeds threaded as necklaces and the longans had been sun-dried and unsweetened. They came out just perfect: perky and plump, with a hint of natural sweetness. I could have eaten bowls and bowls of this lovely chè.


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Thai Sticky Rice Recipe Recipe

Thai Sticky Rice Recipe

07.26.13 by Jackie

Xôi xoài Thái Lan, in Vietnamese, literally translates to "mango sticky rice from Thailand". It's a very popular dessert in Asia; steamed sticky is rice covered in sweetened, fragrant coconut milk and paired with freshly-cut mangoes, then drizzled with thick, syrupy coconut sauce and sprinkled with lightly toasted sesame seeds. 

I made this dessert is because I had leftover pandan leaves that I used in the recipes I developed for my second cookbook, Banh Mi, available since July 18th. By the way, it was named "Best Book of the Month" (July badge) on Amazon. Also, my husband's teenage sisters, Sunny, Lya, Mimi and Lala (that's what Aria calls them) spent last month in Asia. I was surprised when they got back that they asked for this sweet treat, because it's such an easy, common Asian dessert.

It really satisfied their craving and I hope it brought back good memories of their time on the beaches of Thailand and Vietnam. 


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