Che Dau Trang Recipe: A Complete Guide to Vietnamese Sweet Soup

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Written By Hot Thai Restaurant

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Imagine a dessert that’s not only a treat for your taste buds but also steeped in tradition. Che Dau Trang, a beloved Vietnamese sweet soup, is just that. Made with glutinous rice, coconut milk, and azuki beans, this comforting dessert is a staple during Vietnamese festivals and family gatherings.

You might wonder what makes Che Dau Trang so special. It’s the simplicity of the ingredients combined with the heartwarming flavors that create a soothing experience, perfect for wrapping up a meal or enjoying as a mid-afternoon snack. Whether it’s the creamy texture or the subtly sweet taste, this dessert is sure to win you over with its humble elegance.

Dive into the world of Vietnamese desserts with this easy-to-follow recipe that’ll bring a touch of Vietnam right into your kitchen. Get ready to impress your family and friends with a bowl of Che Dau Trang that’s both nourishing and delightfully exotic.

Ingredients

Here’s what you’ll need to create Che Dau Trang, ensuring you can bring this delightful Vietnamese dessert to your table with ease.

For the Sweet Rice Balls

  • 1 cup glutinous rice flour
  • 1/4 cup warm water (adjust as needed)
  • A pinch of salt

For the Coconut Sauce

  • 1 can (400 ml) coconut milk
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch dissolved in 2 tablespoons water
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 cup cooked azuki beans
  • Toasted sesame seeds
  • Freshly grated coconut (optional)
  • Sliced ripe bananas (optional)

Required Tools and Equipment

To make this delightful Che Dau Trang, you will need a few essential tools and equipment that will ensure your cooking process is smooth and efficient. Here’s a list to help you gather everything you need before you start:

  • Medium Pot: You’ll need a durable medium pot for boiling the azuki beans and later mixing them with the glutinous rice flour mixture. A pot with a heavy bottom is preferred as it distributes the heat evenly and prevents burning.
  • Large Bowl: Use a large bowl for soaking the azuki beans overnight, which is crucial for softening them properly.
  • Strainer or Colander: This is essential for draining the soaked azuki beans and rinsing them before you begin cooking.
  • Measuring Cups and Spoons: Accurate measurements are key to the perfect balance of flavors in Che Dau Trang. Ensure you have a set of measuring cups and spoons to measure the water, coconut milk, sugar, and glutinous rice flour.
  • Wooden Spoon or Spatula: This will be used for stirring the mixture of glutinous rice flour and coconut milk to avoid lumps and ensure a smooth consistency.
  • Serving Bowls: Have a few serving bowls ready to serve the Che Dau Trang warm. Smaller bowls are typical for individual servings.
  • Rice Cooker: If you prefer a simpler method for cooking your beans, you can use a rice cooker that has a timer setting.
  • Electric Mixer: For whisking the coconut milk mixture with glutinous rice flour if you prefer not doing it manually.

Gather all these tools and equipment, and you’re ready to start creating your delicious Che Dau Trang soup. Each plays a part in making the cooking process as seamless as possible.

Preparation Steps

Now that you’ve gathered all the necessary tools, let’s dive into the preparation steps for making Che Dau Trang, ensuring a smooth cooking experience and a delightful outcome.

Washing the Rice

  1. Measure 1 cup of glutinous rice and pour it into a large bowl.
  2. Rinse the rice thoroughly under cold running water. Swirl the rice with your hands to release any excess starch.
  3. Continue rinsing until the water runs clear, typically after 3 to 4 washes. This step is crucial for preventing the rice from being too sticky once cooked.
  4. Drain the rice using a fine-mesh strainer to remove any remaining water. Set it aside while you proceed to soak the mung beans. This preparation will ensure the rice cooks evenly and absorbs the flavors well.
  1. Take 1/2 cup of dried mung beans and check them for any small stones or debris, removing any impurities found.
  2. Place the cleaned mung beans into a separate large bowl.
  3. Cover the beans with about 2 to 3 inches of cold water, as they will expand during soaking.
  4. Allow the beans to soak for at least 4 hours, or for best results, overnight. This soaking process softens the beans, reducing cooking time and helping achieve the desired creamy texture in your Che Dau Trang.
  5. Once soaked, drain the mung beans using a strainer and rinse them again with fresh water to remove any residue. They are now ready to be cooked.

Cooking Instructions

Now that you have your ingredients prepped, let’s start cooking. Follow these steps closely to ensure your Che Dau Trang turns out perfectly creamy and delicious.

Cooking the Mung Beans

  1. Drain the soaked mung beans and transfer them to a medium saucepan.
  2. Add water to the saucepan until it is about an inch above the beans.
  3. Bring the water to a boil over high heat, then reduce the heat to medium-low and let it simmer.
  4. Cook the beans uncovered, stirring occasionally, until they are tender and have absorbed most of the water, about 20-25 minutes.
  5. Once cooked, remove the beans from the heat and mash them lightly with the back of a spoon or a potato masher until partially broken up. Set aside.

Making Sweet Rice Balls

  1. While the beans are cooking, prepare the glutinous rice flour. In a large mixing bowl, gradually add water to the glutinous rice flour while stirring to form a smooth, pliable dough.
  2. Pinch off pieces of the dough and roll them between your palms to form small balls, about the size of marbles.
  3. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Carefully drop the rice balls into the boiling water.
  4. Cook the rice balls until they float to the surface, indicating they are done, which should take about 3-5 minutes.
  5. Use a slotted spoon to remove the balls from the water and transfer them to a bowl of cold water to stop the cooking process.
  1. In a small saucepan, combine the coconut milk, sugar, and a pinch of salt.
  2. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly to dissolve the sugar and prevent the coconut milk from curdling.
  3. Once the mixture reaches a gentle simmer, remove it from heat. This should take about 3-5 minutes.
  4. Keep the sauce warm until you are ready to serve the Che Dau Trang.

By carefully following these steps, your Che Dau Trang will carry delightful textures from the tender mung beans and chewy rice balls, all beautifully united by the creamy coconut sauce.

Assembling Che Dau Trang

After preparing the individual components, you’re now ready to assemble your Che Dau Trang. This step brings together the aromatic and creamy elements for that perfect bowl of Che Dau Trang. Follow these detailed instructions to assemble your sweet soup like a pro.

Gather All Prepared Ingredients

Before you start assembling, ensure that all the components are ready and within reach. You’ll need:

  • Cooked mung beans
  • Sweet rice balls
  • Coconut milk sauce
  • Optional toppings: crushed peanuts, sesame seeds, or a drizzle of coconut cream

Layering the Ingredients

  1. Start with the Mung Beans: Spoon the cooked mung beans into your serving bowls. The mung beans form the hearty base of your dessert, offering a soft texture that contrasts beautifully with the other elements.
  2. Add the Sweet Rice Balls: Distribute the sweet rice balls evenly among the bowls. These chewy delights are not only a treat to your taste buds but also add a playful texture to the dessert.
  3. Pour Over the Coconut Milk Sauce: Gently ladle the coconut milk sauce over the mung beans and rice balls. Ensure that every element gets a generous coating of this sweet and creamy sauce. It’s the key to binding all the flavors together into one harmonious dish.
  1. Sprinkle Optional Toppings: If you’re using toppings, now is the time to sprinkle them over your bowls. Crushed peanuts will offer a crunchy contrast, while sesame seeds add a hint of nuttiness.
  2. Final Stir: Give the contents of each bowl a gentle stir to mix the ingredients slightly, which allows the flavors to meld together. This mixing ensures that each spoonful includes a little bit of everything.
  3. Serve Immediately or Chilled: Che Dau Trang can be enjoyed warm or cold, so feel free to serve it immediately if you prefer a warm dessert. Alternatively, you can chill it in the refrigerator for a refreshing treat during warmer weather.

Follow these steps carefully to ensure your Che Dau Trang is not only pleasing to the palate but also visually appealing. Enjoy the delightful combination of textures and flavors that this traditional Vietnamese dessert offers.

Serving Suggestions

After you have assembled your Che Dau Trang, here are some delightful ways to serve it that will enhance its flavors and presentation.

Complement With Additional Toppings

To elevate your Che Dau Trang, consider sprinkling on extra toppings just before serving. Popular choices include:

  • Sesame Seeds: A light dusting of toasted sesame seeds adds a subtle crunch and nutty flavor.
  • Crushed Peanuts: For a more textured bite, sprinkle some crushed peanuts on top.
  • Coconut Flakes: Lightly toasted coconut flakes can provide an extra burst of coconut flavor and a crisp contrast to the creamy texture of the dish.
  • Fresh Fruit: Diced mango, banana slices, or a few lychee fruits can introduce a refreshing fruitiness.

Temperature Variations

Che Dau Trang can be enjoyed in different ways depending on the temperature:

  • Serve Warm: On cooler days, serve the dish warm. It brings out the richness of the coconut milk and softens the rice balls and mung beans for a comforting dessert.
  • Serve Chilled: During warmer weather, try serving it chilled. This refreshes and provides a cooling effect, making it a perfect sweet treat to beat the heat.

Pair With Tea

Che Dau Trang pairs wonderfully with tea. Opt for a mild green or jasmine tea, which can complement the dessert without overwhelming its delicate flavors. The warmth of the tea alongside the sweet and creamy soup creates a perfect balance for a relaxing dessert experience.

Portion Control

For gatherings, you can serve Che Dau Trang in small bowls or cups as part of a larger dessert spread. This allows guests to taste a variety of dishes without filling up too quickly. Alternatively, for a family meal, serve in generous bowls as a standalone dessert to round off the dining experience.

Conclusion

Ready to dive into the delightful world of Che Dau Trang? With the steps you’ve learned, you’re all set to bring this cherished Vietnamese dessert into your kitchen. Whether you serve it warm to comfort the soul on chilly evenings or chilled for a refreshing treat on hot days, it’s sure to impress. Remember the joy is in the details—those little extras like sesame seeds or a splash of coconut flakes can elevate your dish from simple to sublime. So gather your ingredients and let your culinary creativity flow. Your next gathering or family meal could be the perfect backdrop to showcase this exotic sweet treat. Enjoy the process and the delicious results!

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