Malaysian Monday 28 : Puding Jagung (Sweetcorn Pudding)

Monday, March 8, 2010

Hello Monday, hello all.

A disclaimer: today’s Malaysian Monday contains absolutely no fresh ingredients (unless you count water). But somehow it all comes together, if you can get past the fact that there are bits of corn in your dessert.

I’m not sure if it was thanks to a big marketing push, or the convenience, or some sort of exoticness factor, but creamed corn features highly in a lot of Malaysian desserts. Remember the apam balik from last week? Then there’s ice-kacang, and of course this dessert. Corn on the cob and kernels are also very popular – appearing in ice cream, some dessert style soups (eg: sago + corn), and “corn-in-a-cup”. If you’ve been to Malaysia you’ll probably be familiar with the concept, it does exactly as it says on the box – you can buy a cupful of steaming hot corn kernels flavoured with butter (margarine more likely), and salt and pepper. I can’t remember how many times I’ve burnt my tongue on these things. And one of my all-time favourite corn dishes is “jagung bakar” (literally translated as burnt corn). “Jagung bakar” are really barbecued ears of corn, charred to perfection,  dripping with margarine…mmmm, I’m craving some right now.

But back to today’s “pudding”. There are actually a few versions of this dessert. One version doesn’t include the agar-agar resulting in a creamier type of kuih, but it does tend to utilise a lot of custard powder, which I find quite overpowering.  This version uses the aforementioned agar-agar resulting in a more “jelly(jello)” type texture.

I’d halved a recipe found in Mum’s handwritten collection and I’m not sure where the recipe came from, but I have a feeling it may have originated from a book of agar-agar recipes.

Puding jagung
(makes about 6 cupfuls or enough for a small “slice” pan)

200ml evaporated milk
2 ½ cups water
¾ cup sugar
250g creamed corn (I used one 125g can of creamed corn and one 125g can of corn kernels)
1 tbsp custard powder (I used a level spoon, but a heaped one will give a thicker texture to the dessert)
2 egg yolks
1 tbsp (level) agar-agar powder

Boil the agar powder and water together until the agar pwder dissolves. I used a whisk to stir. Once it starts to boil and the agar has dissolved, add in the sugar and stir until dissolved. Take off heat.

In a separate bowl, beat all the other ingredients until well combined. Pour the sugar/agar mixture into the milk mixture, stirring/whisking well all the time. Rinse out the saucepan used for the sugar mixture, then pour the contents of the bowl back into the saucepan and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly. Skim if necessary. The mixture should thicken slightly, but because of the high water content, it never gets to the really thick “coat back of spoon” stage that usual custards do. I’d estimate about 10 minutes of stirring, and a slight colour change occurs (the mixture gets lighter). Pour the mixture into glasses or pan (no need to line etc). Use a toothpick or finger to pop any air bubbles. The mixture will set very rapidly and at room temperature (about half an hour). Chill well before serving.


For the record, the mini-critics love this dish

Have a good week! 


3 hungry tummies said...

That is totally Malaysian! My Malay aunt makes this all the time! Thanks for reminding me how tasty it is!

Trissa said...

I think we have a very similar dessert in the Philippines but with coconut milk - any dessert with sweet corn is tops in my book!

Anh said...

Yunm! (I am for it, even though there's no fresh corn;)).

I actually just finish 'experimenting' a fav dessert from Vietnam. Not quite right but it's ok. Quite similar to yours!!

Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella said...

hehe I'm definitely one for corn in my dessert! One of my favourite icecreams is sweetcorn! I think I'd really love this and I'm curious as to whether this is different from other corn puddings. perhaps I should just give it a go! :)

shaz said...

Thanks 3HT - it's really a very Malay dessert isn't it?

Trissa - I was actually thinking about how coconut milk would taste really good with this when I made it.

Hope you'll be able to post about that sometime Anh, would love to hear about it.

Hi Lorraine - it's not as creamy as other corn puddings, but it does taste very strongly of corn (a plus in my book :) )

Hungry Dog said...

Yet another educational post! I'm not overly jazzed about corn in desserts but I am certainly willing to give it a try.

grace said...

well this is neat! i've often thought that corn was sweet enough to somehow be involved in a dessert, and that was verified when lorraine from nqn made an ice cream with it. this looks really tasty to me, shaz--nicely done!

Juliana said...

Shaz, you reminded me of some corn pudding that we used to eat back in the idea of using agar-agar :-)

shaz said...

Cheers Hungry Dog, you're very brave :)

Thanks Grace - I love sweetcorn ice-cream too.

Hi Juliana, sounds very interesting, I'd love to find out more about the Brazilian version.

Stella said...

Hi Shaz, this corn pudding sounds wonderful. I really need to get some agar agar and try it out!