Coconut candies are not just helping locals earn an income but are also introducing Ben Tre’s cuisine to the world.
Coconut candies are made from simple ingredients such as coconut milk, sugar and malt. Malt is made from glutinous rice, which is carefully chosen: ground, big and evenly ripe.
For sweet tasting coconut milk, the coconuts chosen are those that have turned dry and are freshly picked from the trees. The sugar is a golden granulated type to produce candies with a beautiful color and appearance.
Sugar is melted and then mixed with malt in approximately equal proportions. The same amount of coconut milk is added. During the cooking process, the cook continuously stirs the mixture to mix the candies evenly.
When the mixture reaches a particular consistency, the cook pours it into the mold covered with a layer of coconut oil before cutting it into small pieces. Finally, coconut candies are wrapped with a thin layer of rice paper to absorb moisture.
Coconut candies are made only by very skilled and experienced cooks. Each stage requires patience, hard work and meticulousness to produce the perfect candies.
Nowadays, candy makers in Ben Tre add other flavors to coconut candies, such as durian, chocolate, pandan leaves and roasted peanuts, to create various candies and satisfy the market’s demands.
There’s nothing quite like munching on coconut candies combined with a hot cup of tea.