HOME > Chowhound > Home Cooking >


DESSERT offering for asian-themed dinner?

Hi hounds
I love to bake and always offer to bring the dessert when we have get-togethers with friends. Tomorrow night we are having dinner with some new friends. They are serving an asian themed meal, and I think she said something about peanut sauce. I know this is not very much information to go on, sorry.

Any ideas for what I could bring to keep with their asian theme?
Exotic ingredients (like fresh asian fruits) would probably be tough for me to find up here in northern Vermont. I do have some cans of coconut milk in the cupboard. Nuts are okay, as are all fruits, but he is not a big chocolate fan.

baked coconut custard?
poached pears?
mango ice cream/sorbet?


  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Here's a tasty and simple one...

    Che Chuoi (Bananas in Coconut milk)

    It's basically banana slices poached in coconut milk. If you want to get authentic about it, see if your asian supply aisle of your grocery store has palm sugar, if not, sugar in the raw will do nicely. I've also done this with whole baby bananas, which makes for fun presentation :)

    Another silly option is to make your own fortune cookies. I did this once...they were kind of a pain in the neck, but could be worth it if you came up with enough silly fortunes for your friends :
    "You like Chinese food"
    "Your willingness to defy the social conventions of cleanliness and tact is an inspiration to others"

      1. Sticky rice with mango also popped right into my mind. You drizzle coconut milk over it too. Yum!

        If you wanted to fancy it up you could have mango coulis instead. :)

        1 Reply
        1. re: mrbunsrocks

          I'll second this suggestion. There is a recipe for it in Hot Sour Salty Sweet. Seems very simple but oh so good.

        2. Warm red bean soup is great in cold weather:


          You can add coconut milk to it, too.

          1 Reply
          1. re: chowser

            Or a number of similar warm soups: green bean, tapioca & taro, black or white sesame, peanut, cloud ear, dofu faa, etc.

          2. I'd totally go for the mango ice cream or sorbet! She may be making food that already uses coconut milk preparation...

            1. fried bananas and honey

              coconut custard with lechee or mandarin orange sauce

              mandarin orange and lime sorbet

              1. I haven't tried this yet (I'm going to tonight) but it looks GREAT.


                1 Reply
                1. re: annimal

                  That looks wonderful. Amyamelia, if panna cotta strikes your fancy, I came up with a simple coconut version:


                2. Something you may want to consider is tropical fruit wonton with a mango coulis-- it sounds dodgy, but the crisp wonton and chunks of soft fruit go beautifully together, and it's a fun presentation. It's also easy-- I get cans of mangosteen, lychee, and papaya from the Chinese grocery, chop them up together with a bit of lime juice, and wrap away. They're best fried, and with your mangoes as a simple sauce it would be pretty stunning.
                  That said, your idea of coconut custard also sounds great. With mango sauce? The contrast would look wonderful.

                  1. blueberries and ginger go very well together. I once made blueberry/ginger "egg roll" things that were pretty good, but definitely not light. I used candied ginger.

                    1. I made a nice tapioca pudding with coconut milk cinnamon and cloves. Very easy and nice if you like tapioca.

                      1. Leche Flan is a wonderfully rich and delicious carmel topped custard from the Philipines, and easy to make
                        Banana Fritters
                        Also, I use to go to this wonderful restaurant that made a tapioca soupy like concoction with coconut milk

                        1. Haupia (coconut pudding/jello)with a macadamia nut shortbread crust, topped with fresh whipped cream, in turn topped with toasted coconut. Delicious, feels light as a cloud, while it's actually amazingly rich. If you need I can post a recipe -it's very easy to make and always garners raves.

                            1. Try wrapping banana in springroll wrapper , then friend it. After word roll the fried banana on cinnamon and sugar. serve with vanilla ice cream. I like the chocolate drizzle. I had it at a restaurant and its really good.

                              1. I was looking in my Thai cookbook, I have made this wonderful Crazy Coconut Pie a few times, its crustless, and easy. Addictive!

                                1. Hey everyone,
                                  Thanks for all of the great ideas!
                                  So the dinner was last night and around 3 in the afternoon i was all set to make the bananas simmered in coconut milk, sprinkled with toasted sesame seeds, along with a mango sorbet (using that freeze the whole can of fruit in heavy syrup and then zap it in the FP trick).

                                  My husband ambled into the kitchen, picked up the recipe and said "you're making THIS for our friends? Have you ever even HAD this before?" (with surprised and doubtful tone of voice--I do usually stick with recipes I have at the very least tasted when cooking for other folks).

                                  I'm pissed at him, but the self-doubt kicks in. By now it is too late to go to market and I have to start making something NOW. Look around the kitchen, look at rude husband and say something like "well, would you rather a cake made with a massive amount of fresh grated ginger, cause I was thinking about that before I got all these great ideas on Chowhound." With his positive response, I went ahead and did that, and it was fabulous. GLORIOUS. I had made LindaMAc's triple gingerbread a few weeks ago (which we loved), but this was different. No other spices other than 1/2 cup of fresh ginger. A little molasses, but other than that the ginger is the star. The recipe is in the newer Joy of Cooking. I subbed some butter out for olive oil and used some maple syrup (we are in the land of maples). Served with barely sweetened whipped cream and sprinkled with minced crystallized ginger, it was a thing of beauty. Our friends got up from their table to serve themselves another piece. Happy to paraphrase the recipe if anyone wants it.

                                  thanks again to all my chowpals. Next time I'll need to ask with enough time to experiment (and prove my naysayer hubby wrong).


                                  ps...I'd love the recipe for coconut pie!

                                  1 Reply
                                  1. re: amyamelia

                                    Oh what a great story amyamelia. And please, I would love your recipe for the cake, and it sounds just great. I LOVE crystallized ginger. Give me a minute and I'll be posting the pie recipe, you will be flabergasted with the results of such an easy recipe.

                                  2. Crazy Coconut Pie:

                                    3/4 stick of butter/4 eggs/ 2 cups milk/1/2 cup flour/3/4 cup sugar/1 & 1/2 tsp vanilla
                                    1 cup shredded coconut
                                    1. preheat the oven 350. Grease and flour a 10 inch pie plate.
                                    2. Place all the ingredients into a blender for 1 minute. Pout into the prepared pan
                                    3. Bake for 45 mintues or until golden on top
                                    cut into indivdiual wedges and serve with fresh whip cream - good warm or cold

                                    1. This is a little off the wall, but could be fun. I saw chocolate sushi in a store once. They may have it around gourmet chocolate shops.

                                      2 Replies
                                      1. re: sherry f

                                        how did they wrap the "chocolate" I'm thinking perhaps a coconut, corn syrup gooey mess with pistachios, cherries or macadamia nuts... wow what a wonderful and ingenious little piece of heaven sherry f!!

                                        1. re: chef chicklet

                                          They actually weren't wrapped, they were in a box and were pure chocolate (ie white and milk or dark chocolate shaped like sushi maki's and sushi negri's). They may be around now given the fact that it is so close to Valentine's Day. I saw them in a gourmet shop in Toronto.

                                      2. Hi Chef C:
                                        thanks for the coconut pie recipe. love to have good dessert recipes that don't actually require a pie crust (I do a good one, but it's just a pain).
                                        here is the link to the thread I started with the ginger cake recipe.


                                        hope you like it!

                                        1 Reply
                                        1. re: amyamelia

                                          Oh I wll definitely love this, thanks!!