Hed Chef: Peach gum dessert soup
If you enjoy food with gelatinous textures, this is one dessert soup that will tickle your palate.
Peach gum dessert soup is a delicious way of enjoying peach gum, regarded as a beauty tonic in traditional Chinese medicine (TCM).
I came across peach gum at a dried goods shop in Bugis. Called tao jiao in Mandarin, it comes in the form of amber-hued crystals. Peach gum is actually the resin of the Chinese peach tree (prunus persica).
The manager of the shop, Mr Walter Chua, 47, said peach gum can be soaked in room temperature water for at least three hours to overnight. Hot water can be used to reduce the soaking time.
I tried both methods and prefer using hot water as it saves on the waiting time.
Better grade peach gum comes in larger crystals and it is easier to remove the impurities in the peach gum. Using tweezers make it easier to pick out the impurities.
Mr Chua suggested that after soaking the peach gum, it is best to remove any hard bits that remain unsoftened.
Peach gum is a popular product among his female customers as it is rich in collagen.
In TCM, peach gum is believed to have cooling properties, so Mr Chua suggested cooking peach gum with dried longan and dried red dates to give balance to the dessert. Pandan leaves give the soup an aromatic flavour.
He recommended using honey rock sugar as it is tastier and adds to the flavour of the soup.
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- 2 litres of water
- 150g peach gum
- 3 pandan leaves, knotted
- 50g longan
- 6 red dates (40g)
- 120g honey rock sugar
- 20g wolfberries, rinsed
1. Bring one litre of water to a boil. Place peach gum in a heat-resistant bowl and pour hot water over it. Soak for two hours.
2. Discard water and rinse peach gum.
3. Use a pair of kitchen tweezers to remove impurities from peach gum.
4. Place peach gum in colander and rinse well.
5. Transfer peach gum into a pot. Add pandan leaves and bring to a boil.
6. Turn the heat down to low and simmer for 30 minutes.
7. Add longan and red dates and simmer for another 60 minutes.
8. Add honey rock sugar and simmer for another 30 minutes.
9. Add wolfberries and simmer for another two to five minutes.
10. Discard pandan leaves. Serve hot or chilled.