You can easily identify this food by its smooth, dark surface. Cincau, or grass jelly, is a popular dessert in East Asia. Having a slightly bitter taste, this food has become an indispensable part of Malaysia’s food culture. It is often a topping in beverages and desserts—creating delights such as Soya Bean Cincau and Cincau Cendol.
This food also plays a part in the recent bubble tea trend. It is an alternative to the tapioca pearl in numerous milk tea chains such as Chatime, and Koi. The youngsters perceive this food as the healthier alternative to boba pearl due to lower calories. In fact, this food has several health benefits too, such as relieving a heartburn and constipation.
Origin of Cincau
Although being a popular food in Malaysia, the origins of Cincau lie in mainland China, Macau, Hong Kong, and Taiwan. Their lowlands and loose soils of these countries making it the ideal terrain for the grass jelly plant to thrive.
This food comes in various names and is also eaten differently depending on the country. For example, in Philipines, this food is referred to as Gulaman and is used in desserts like Halo-halo.
Cincau RecipeDifficulty: Easy
Making Cincau is relatively straightforward, needing minimal ingredients and few steps. With on trip to the supermarket, you can easily recreate this dessert at the comforts of your home!
12g of grass jelly powder
3-4 tablespoons of sugar
10-20 grams of corn starch (depending on your preferred firmness)
- In a mixing bowl, add grass jelly, corn starch, and sugar (just a tip: the more corn starch you add, the firmer your jelly will be, so adjust it according to your preference!)
- Next, add in approximately 200 ml of water to dissolve the mixture. Stir the mixture to speed up the process.
- In a separate pot, heat 800 ml of water to boil. Then while stirring, slowly pour the mixture. Continue heating for 1 to 2 minutes, until large bubbles appear on the surface.
- Pour the mixture out into a smaller bowl, and store it in the fridge to cool.
- After several hours, check to see if the mixture has hardened, and cut it into small cubes if it has. With that, your Cincau is complete and ready to be served (though hopefully, you don’t eat them plain).
Ways to Enjoy This Dish
Add this dish into any drinks to chew on. This instantly elevates a plain cup of beverage into a more filling one. Simply plop some into your daily cup of instant Teh Tarik or coffee, and you’re good to go.
Explore other popular Malaysian delights with Lokataste Recipe and more!