Main Navigation Bar

Tag Archives | keo

Chewy Sesame Peanut Candy (Keo Me Dau Phong)

A homemade treat that's perfect for gift-giving.

I shared a brittle version of this candy not too long ago.  (Check out the link for my Peanut Candy recipe.)  After posting the brittle recipe, I received numerous requests for the chewier version, so here it is–finally.  This recipe for Chewy Sesame Peanut candy is softer and more tender for those who don’t like hard candy or fear cracking a tooth on these delights.  The Viet version of this candy, Keo Me Xung, is made with only sesame seeds.  I love the coupling of sesame seeds and peanuts and modified the traditional recipe.  If you’d like to make an all sesame seeds version, just substitute the peanuts for sesame seeds.  The rest of the recipe is the same.  Feel free to also use any combination of nuts you like.  Enjoy!

Notes on the Recipe, Tips and Tricks

Cooking the sugar is the trickiest part of this recipe and you may have to make this a few times before getting the consistency just right.  If the sugar is not cooked enough, the candy will be gooey and not hold its shape.  Cook the sugar too long and you’ll have brittle instead of a chewy candy.  The best ways to tell if the sugar is cooked just right is to:  1) check the color–the syrup should be the color of honey and 2) check the consistency–the syrup should bead off a spoon rather than stream off it indicating it has reached the appropriate thickness.  (If you have a candy thermometer that can provide a quick read, the sugar should reach the Firm-Ball Stage, temperature is 245°F – 250°F.)

Be attentive as the syrup nears the 5 minute cooking window as it turns dark very quickly from this point on and can burn quite easily.  As soon as the syrup reaches the golden, honey color, add the lemon juice right away.   The lemon juice helps to suspend the syrup in its current candy state.  Add the lemon juice quickly and be careful as the syrup may splatter.

Stir the tapioca and water mixture before adding to the syrup as the contents tend to settle.  Again, as with the lemon juice, pour the mixture quickly into the pan and then stir vigorously.  The tapioca starch turns from opaque to translucent when it’s cooked.

For faster cooling, place the candy in the refrigerator for 2 hours.

Store any uneaten candy in an air-tight container. The candy is good for up to 2 weeks.

This candy is a really popular sweet treat for Lunar New Year and you can easily make little goody bags or boxes for gift-giving.  Individually wrap the candies using plastic wrap or parchment paper to make tasty little bon bons.  Alternatively, use small cookie cutters to cut the candy into fun shapes and then place on mini cupcake liners for cute little treats.  As Lunar New Year often falls close to Valentine’s Day, I decided to turn these candies into little V-Day treats.

Watch the video below for instructions.

If you enjoyed this recipe, you may also like: Peanut Candy (Keo Dau Phong) and Asian-Inspired Caramel Apples.

Ingredients

1/2 cup roasted roasted sesame seeds
1/3 cup water + 2 Tbsp tapioca starch
1 Tbsp vegetable oil
1 cup sugar
1/3 cup water
1 tsp lemon juice
1/4 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup unsalted roasted peanuts

Directions

Add the tapioca starch to 1/3 cup water and stir until mixture is smooth.  Set aside for now.

Line a 9×6 inch pan with parchment paper.  Drizzle vegetable oil into the pan and then use a brush to coat the paper with the oil.  Sprinkle 1/4 cup sesame seeds into the pan.  Tilt and gently shake the pan to distribute the sesame seeds making sure to cover the bottom of the pan completely.

Place a small saucepan over High Heat.  Add vegetable oil, sugar and water.  Stir together dissolving the sugar while bringing the mixture to a boil.  (This takes approximately 2 minutes.)

As soon as the syrup starts to boil, stop stirring.  Cook the syrup for 5 minutes or until it thickens and turns a light honey color.  Reduce the heat to Low and cook for another 1 minute or until the syrup turns a honey color.   (Be careful with this step as the sugar cooks very quickly at this point and can get dark and burn if left too long.)  As soon as the honey color is reached, quickly add the lemon juice and stir together.  Stir the tapioca and water mixture and then pour into the syrup along with the vanilla extract.  Stir quickly to combine and cook for another 1 minute.  Add the peanuts and mix well with the syrup.  Cook for another 1 minute and then turn off the heat.

Pour the hot candy into the pan prepared earlier and spread evenly into the pan.  Sprinkle the remaining 1/4 cup sesame seeds on top.  Use a spatula or the back of a spoon to smooth out the top.  Allow to cool for 3-4 hours.

To serve, remove the candy from the pan, peel away the paper from the edges, cut off the edges (optional) and then cut into 1×1-inch squares.

Yields:  40 pieces

Tools I Love and Use in My Kitchen

A delicious homemade treat for Valentine's Day!

*This post contains affiliate links.*

Continue Reading

Peanut Candy (Keo Dau Phong)

Candy is probably one of the things you’ve never attempted to make at home.  Perhaps you’re concerned about burning sugar or think you need a candy thermometer.  Perhaps it’s easier to just go buy it.  Well my friends, if you wish to change your mindset, here is a super easy candy recipe for you to try!  My shortcut is to use the microwave to cook the sugar into a delicious caramel.  As microwaves vary in power, please keep your eyes on the sugar during the second half of the cooking process.  Remove the sugar from the microwave once it reaches a light honey color.  (It will continue to deepen in color as it cools.)  As I mentioned in the video, prepare all the ingredients and utensils ahead of time and have it ready.  You have a very short window when working with caramel and so will need to work quickly.  My favorite flavor trio is peanuts, sesame seeds and coconut flakes but feel free to use any nut or seed variety you enjoy!

Watch the video below for instructions.

If you enjoyed this recipe, you may also like: Chewy Sesame Peanut Candy (Keo Me Dau Phong) and Candied Orange Peels (Mut Vo Cam).

Ingredients

1 cup sugar
1 Tbsp water
1 Tbsp lemon juice
1 1/3 cup roasted peanuts (salted if you prefer)
1/3 cup toasted sesame seeds
1/3 cup coconut flakes
1/2 tsp vegetable oil

Directions

Line an 8 X 8 inch baking dish with parchment paper.

Sprinkle 1 tsp of sesame seeds into the dish.  Set aside 1 tsp of sesame seeds in a separate bowl to use later.

Oil a large spoon with some of the vegetable oil and set aside.

Add peanuts, sesame seeds and coconut flakes into a bowl or measuring cup and mix together.

In microwavable bowl or measuring cup add the sugar, water and lemon juice.  Microwave on High for 2 minutes.  Swirl sugar around in bowl for 10 seconds.  Return to microwave and cook on High for another 2 minutes or until the sugar is a light honey color.

Add the nut mixture and quickly stir together coating everything evenly with the caramel.  Pour into baking dish and quickly press into the dish using the oiled spoon.  Sprinkle remaining sesame seeds on the top.  Work quickly as the candy hardens very fast.

Allow the candy to cool for 10 minutes.  While candy is cooling, coat a large knife with the remaining vegetable oil.  Remove candy from dish and cut into thin strips, approximately 3/4 to 1-inch thick.  Then cut into bit-sized pieces.  Allow to cool completely before eating.

Store any uneaten portions in an air-tight container.

Yields:  40–50 pieces

Peanut Candy (Keo Dau Phong)

Peanut Candy (Keo Dau Phong)

Continue Reading