Coconut Jelly

Photo by goosmurf/flickr

A favorite in Burma, where it is called kyauk kyaw (pronounced chow chaw), Burmese for agar-agar, or any jelly made from it.

Serves 8.


7 g/1/4 oz agar-agar strands or 4 teaspoons agar-agar powder
400 ml/14 fl oz can coconut milk
375 ml/12 fl oz/1 1/2 cups water
125 ml/4 fl oz/1/2 cup canned coconut cream
125 g/4 oz/1/2 cup sugar rose water to flavour


Soak the strands of agar-agar in cold water overnight or at least 1 hour. Drain and measure. There should be 1 1/2 cups, loosely packed.

Put the strands with coconut milk and water into a saucepan and stir constantly while bringing to the boil. Add sugar and keep stirring and simmering 10-15 minutes or until all the strands are completely dissolved.

If using agar-agar powder, sprinkle over the coconut milk, add sugar and simmer for 10 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in the coconut cream.

Flavour to taste, then pour into a dish rinsed out with cold water and allow to set. Cut into diamond shapes or squares. This firm jelly is meant to be picked up with the fingers.

Recipe excerpted from Encyclopedia of Asian Food by Charmaine Solomon (Periplus Editions, 1998)