A very common local dessert here, sweet green bean soup (also known as mung bean) is very easy to prepare. Where we live, green bean is considered a health food, especially during hot weather to clear “heat” from the body or to stimulate secretion of body fluid. Health benefits aside, it’s a nice dessert to have any day of the year. To enhance flavour, additional ingredients like sago, sweet potatoes, dried longans or palm sugar may be are added. When my kids were young, they loved it with sweet corn kernels and sago. My personal favourite is with sago, coconut and gula melaka (palm sugar) which makes this a truly delightful dessert.
GREEN BEAN SOUP WITH SAGO, COCONUT MILK AND GULA MELAKA
125gm gm green beans, washed & drained
1.5 litres water
1 stalk pandan leaves, washed and cut into sections
(B) 40gm sago (optional), rinse and soak in some water
(C) 120gm white, brown, black or palm sugar (adjust amount according to preferred sweetness)
(D) 125ml thick coconut milk (optional)
2) Meantime, if palm sugar is preferred, put palm sugar in a pot with 250 ml of water. Bring to cook over low heat until palm sugar melts. Stir continuously to prevent burning. Strain to remove sendiments.
3) When green bean is cooked, simply add some sugar (if you like it simple), otherwise add sago and stir until done (about 3 mins), followed by palm sugar and coconut milk (alternatively, coconut milk may be added just before serving as some may prefer without it). Stir well and remove from heat.