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Coffee-Coconut Agar Dessert

[Photographs: Leela Punyaratabandhu]

Note: Make sure that you allow the liquid to which the agar powder is added come to a hard boil for at least 30 seconds; otherwise the powder will not be fully dissolved and your agar dessert will not set. Also, you may be tempted to use good-quality coffee and/or strong espresso. You can, although I cannot recommend it for this particular application. Espresso is so strong that it causes the coffee layer to overpower the coconut layer.

Regardless of whatever mold or design you use, make sure that the end result has between 30-50% of the coconut layer in it. Notice that the coconut layer is salted whereas the coffee layer is not. This is based on the assumption that both layers are represented in each bite with the coconut layer providing the mild saltiness that complement the sweet (and ever so slightly bitter) coffee layer. So if your design has more of the coconut part than the coffee part, it may look pretty, but it will be overly salty.

In other words, you can be creative with the layering design, but be sure to keep the proper ratio in mind.

About the author: Leela is the author of the Thai food blog SheSimmers.com. You can follow her at @shesimmers


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