Originally served to the royal court, this dessert is now popular across Thailand. The topping of fried shallots is a must – even though it may seem unusual!
- 200 g (7 oz) taro, peeled and diced
- 80 ml (2½ fl oz/⅓ cup) vegetable oil
- 50 g (1¾ oz) red shallots, very finely sliced
- 5 duck eggs, beaten
- 4 pandan leaves
- 250 g (9 oz/⅔ cup lightly packed) coconut sugar
- 400 ml (13½ fl oz) coconut cream
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
- Preheat the oven to 100°C (230°F).
- Bring a large saucepan of water to the boil over high heat. Place the taro in the bottom of a large bamboo steamer and steam for 15 minutes, until soft. Purée the taro in a food processor and set aside.
- Heat the oil in a small saucepan over medium heat until it shimmers. Add the shallots and fry until golden and crisp. Remove from the oil with a slotted spoon and set aside to drain on paper towel.
- Combine the egg and pandan leaves in a large bowl. Squeeze the pandan leaves with your hands to infuse the eggs with the pandan aroma. Add the coconut sugar and coconut cream and mix well to combine.
- Squeeze the pandan leaves once more, then strain the mixture into another large bowl to remove the leaves and any lumps. Stir in the taro purée until smooth and well incorporated.
- Divide the custard mix between six 11 cm (4¼ in) square moulds or similarly sized ramekins and bake for 50 minutes, until set. Before serving, sprinkle with the fried shallots.
Recipe and images from Bangkok Local by Sareen Rojanametin and Jean Thamthanakorn, Smith Street Books, RRP $39.99