Sweet Potato Dessert Two Ways

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Happy New Year! Sweet potatoes in coconut milk and sweet potatoes in sugared water are two Asian-style desserts I grew up with. The first is essentially “Bubur Cha Cha” (which is sweet potatoes and taro in coconut milk) minus the taro simply because I prefer it to be all sweet potatoes. That’s the beauty of making the foods yourself – you can make them EXACTLY the way you like it. :) I tend to make mine a little less sweet than how most locals favor them as well. Not only that, I prefer a higher liquid to potatoes ratio than what is typical and you will see these adjustments in my recipes. Feel free to change them to your taste. Usually, I’m more partial to the plainer sweet potatoes in sugared water over the richer coconut milk version, but on days when you can’t decide, make both like I did this time. Enjoy!

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Sweet Potato in Coconut Milk
1 pound sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into bite-size pieces
1½ cans coconut milk (about 21 fluid ounces)
¼ cup sugar
A pinch of salt
2 pandan leaves, rinsed and knotted, optional

Place sweet potatoes and 1 tablespoon water in a microwavable casserole dish. Microwave covered on High until sweet potatoes are tender (easily pierced) but still hold their shape, about 4 minutes, stirring twice. Uncover and set aside until needed. Place coconut milk, sugar, salt, and pandan leaves (if using) in a medium saucepan, and bring the mixture to a boil over high heat, stirring constantly. Add sweet potatoes and let it come to a boil once again. Remove from heat, and serve warm or cold.

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Sweet Potato Soup
1 pound sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into bite-size pieces
3½ cups water
1 slice fresh ginger, optional
2 pandan leaves, rinsed and knotted, optional
¼ cup sugar or to taste

Place sweet potatoes, water, ginger (if using), and pandan leaves (if using) in a medium saucepan, and bring the mixture to a boil over high heat. Lower heat and simmer for 10 to 15 minutes or until sweet potatoes are tender. Add sugar to taste. Remove from heat, and serve warm or cold.

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