Ah Balling, also called tang yuan, are soft and slightly chewy glutinous rice balls stuffed with mouthwatering ingredients like peanut, red bean or sesame paste. They are served in a sweet broth which is often infused with ginger, although peanut soup is also very popular. Ah Balling is a Chinese dessert that was traditionally served during the Winter Solstice and Chinese New Year to symbolize togetherness. Today you can enjoy this dish all year round.
Kueh is a variety of small desserts that come in many different forms, using various ingredients. Coconut milk, gula melaka, pandan and tapioca are essentials that are commonly used in most types of kueh. Southeast Asian neighbors will be very familiar with these delectables since they are found all over the region, especially in Malaysia and Indonesia. From the colorful layers of Kueh Lapis to the oozing gula melaka of Ondeh Ondeh, there are so many irresistible kueh to choose from.
This list would not be complete without what might be the mother of all Singapore desserts, Ice Kachang. There are red beans, jelly, chendol and attap chee (palm seed) hidden under a mountain of shaved ice, then soaked in the rainbow and doused with evaporated milk. A hit of Ice Kachang is sublime in the hot and humid weather. At many stalls, you can also add extra toppings like sweet corn, mango, durian or chopped peanuts.
Served hot or cold, this golden colored soup typically contains dried longans, white fungus, barley, gingko nuts and sweet syrup. Ingredients can vary. Some vendors may add other yummy additions like dried persimmon, sweet potato or lotus seeds. As a hot dessert, cheng tng is a warming and comforting treat – simply satisfying. If the weather is just too hot, have the dessert icy cold instead. So sweet and cooling.
Not your average prata, tissue prata is a delicious pyramid of crispy paper-thin prata coated with sugar on its underside. It’s not exactly for the health conscious as it’s usually glazed with a generous amount of butter that drips to the base and is sometimes topped with whirls of chocolate syrup. You will probably consume a thousand calories in one sitting.