Last weekend my mother in law gave me a tier of Cambodian banana, called Namvar. She has a lot of banana trees at her backyard which give plenty of fruits through out the year. There are many types of bananas in Cambodia. I am most familiar with two types: green long one called Chek Ombong (similar to the common yellow ones found in Australia, but not as starchy and much sweeter) and the sweet short fat ones called Chek Namvar.
Namvar is very popuar one and is used in many Cambodian desserts. I love to eat them as fresh fruits like the Australian bananas, but because we have so much of them and they are getting very ripe and sweet, I thought I made banana pudding with coconut cream, tapioca pearls or sago and toasted mung beans. There are multiple versions of this dessert, some do not use mung beans but my mum always used the beans and I love the toasty nutty flavour they give to the dessert. I have not tried using the Australian banana, but I do not see why it cannot be used. The cooking time depends on how ripe the banana is, but it should be a very quick dessert. My kids love this dessert (they are my biggest fans especially Aaron). It can be served as it is or on top sticky rice.
I hope you enjoy making and eating the dessert and drop me a line to see how you go.
Recipe for Cambodian Banana Pudding with Toasted Mung Beans (Chek Khtis)
Serve: 4 to 6
Time: 5 mins preparation, 15 mins cooking
What you need:
100g or 1/3 cup mung beans (these beans have been halved with skin removed. You can leave this out, if you do not have them, but highly recommend from me)
1/4 cup tapioca pearls or sago
400g or 6 small ripe bananas
200ml coconut cream
2 1/2 cup water
1/4 tsp salt
5 tbsp sugar ( or 6 if you like your dessert very sweet)
200ml coconut cream
1/4 tsp salt
1 tbsp sugar
1- Boil the water in a cooking pot
2- Heat up the frying pan on medium heat
3- Start peeling the skin off the bananas
4- Toast the beans in the hot frying pan and keep stirring till golden and you can smell the toasty fragrance (not burn). This should take about 2 to 3 mins
5- Pour the toasted beans into the cooking pot with the water and cook for about 5 mins on medium heat till the beans are almost tender. Please do not walk away because if the heat is too high, the boiling water may spill from the pot. (Note if you do not use mung beans you can skip step 4 and 5)
6- While the beans are cooking cut the banana diagonally into small pieces as below
7- When the beans are almost tender (after step 5) Add sugar and salt and stir well
8- Add bananas and cook for another 3 mins or so depending on how ripe the banana is. You want the banana to cook through
9- Add 200ml of coconut cream and stir well and then add the tapioca and stir again
10- When the mixture just came to the boil, turn the heat off. The tapioca will continue to cook till they become clear. This should take a few mins
The dessert is ready to be served as it is, but I like to add salty coconut milk on top of my dessert. If you want to try, follow the next step
11- add the extra 200ml coconut cream to a clean cooking pot and cook it in medium heat. Add 1/4 tsp of salt and 1tbsp of sugar and stir till it has little bubble and then turn the heat off
12- To serve, spoon the banana pudding into a small dessert bowl and top it with the salty coconut cream…. I am going to eat mine now. Bon appetite!
Tip: if you serve this on top of sticky rice, add more sugar to the pudding. Double the trouble I know.