Chè are Vietnamese desserts. They come in a variety of tastes and flavors. Some have sweet potato, corn, tapioca, sesame and mungo or red beans. Selling them as delicisios treats to my local friends here earns rather skeptic looks and frowns, which is understandable compared to the cream/butter based treats we are used to over here. No one would eat potatoes or red bean with lots of sugar. The majority of Chè involve also coconut milk – the cream substitute. So these are good desserts (and filling ones!) for lactose sensitive or intolerant peeps.
This chè is unbelievably quick and easy to do but tastes incredible. Only ripe bananas, coconut milk and sugar are needed for the basic version. It leaves a great impression with friends and family and proves that Asian desserts can be tasty as well.
The original chè chuối also has tapioca pearls (sago pearls),which gives it more a texture though being totally taste neutral. If you decide to have them with tapioca pearls, it is worth it to cook them separately and then adding them last. Tapioca overcooked can become easily a tasteless lump.
The bananas are sliced before putting in a pot with some sugar on low heat. I used Muscovado sugar for the natural more in depth flavor. Be careful not to overheat the sugar as it does not get burnt. Once the banana slices lose some texture and the sugar is brown.
Pour the coconut milk over and simmer for a another two or three minutes. Fill in glasses and sprinkle with crushed peanuts or toasted sesame seeds. This tastes both cold and warm!