Cendol: green rice flour jellies with palm sugar and coconut milk

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Cendol

Cendol is a sweet dessert drink made of rice flour with palm sugar syrup and coconut milk. It has a bright green colour and the distinctive pandan aroma. It’s a dessert in a drink that can quench your thirst at the same time make a delightful dessert with the green gooey like jellies. 

a glass of cendol - Indonesian dessert made of rice flour  with palm sugar and coconut milk

In Indonesia, particularly in West Jawa regions, Cendol is a popular Jajan Pasar (aka street food). 

It’s also often enjoyed during the fasting month, Ramadan. You see many food sellers do this throughout the Ramadan as people have it as a menu for breaking the fast. 

And there are a few types of Cendol that differ according to its key ingredients. 

You can make it using mung bean flour (Hunkwe), or rice flour.


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Cendol Ingredients

This recipe uses rice flour as its main ingredients. With a little bit of tapioca flour as an addition to give the chewy texture to the cendol. 

As for the green colour, I use ready-made pandan paste because it’s not easy for me to get Suji leaves here in the UK. You see, in Indonesia, Suji leaves are used to colour the food green. Because the leaves give a beautiful natural green colour with a distinct fragrance which is similar to Pandan leaves’ fragrance. But it’s not as sweet fragrant as the latter one.

When it comes to sugar, I strongly suggest you use palm sugar/ coconut sugar/ jaggery. Because it tastes nicer and it’s a healthier option as well.

But if for whatever reason you can not get palm sugar, you can substitute with dark muscovado sugar or dark soft brown sugar. Just bear in mind, this sugar is sweeter than palm sugar, so you may want to adjust the sweetness according to your taste and the sugar you choose.

Last but not least, you will need coconut milk to make this Cendol dessert drink. Try to get the good quality coconut milk so that your cendol will taste good too. And if it’s possible, try to put a bit of pandan leaf when you boil the coconut milk. So it will be nicely fragrant.

Here in the UK, we can only get Thai pandan leaves that are very long. So ⅔ of one pandan leaf is more than enough to use for this recipe. 

How To Make Cendol

In essence, you need to cook three elements, i.e. the green pudding, sugar syrup and coconut milk. 

So, firstly, you mix the rice flour, tapioca flour and salt in a mixing bowl. Then you add 300 ml/ 10.14 fl. oz water and whisk it to make a smooth batter. 

Colour the mixture with ½ teaspoon of pandan paste. This pandan paste also acts as the flavour and fragrance agent. Because it contains the pandan leaf extract as the name says. 

mixing rice flour and tapioca flour
green batter in a bowl and a hand whisk

After that, boil 400 ml/ 13.53 fl oz of water in a large pan. When it reaches boiling point, pour the water into the green flour mixture as you stir the mixture. Then put the mixture back into the pan/ pot and continue cooking until the mixture gets thick and very sticky. 

boiling water in a pan
adding water to green batter
green batter in a pan
green batter and a whisk

It can be hard stirring it as it gets thicker and thicker. But keep cooking until it’s bubbling hot which is the sign it’s boiling. 

Get a big bowl ready and place cold water with some ice cubes in it. 

Take your cendol maker/ potato ricer. Spoon the cooked cendol mixture and put it in the cendol maker/ potato ricer. Hold it over the iced water bowl, and press the maker/ ricer until the Cendol comes out and falls to the iced water. Keep pressing until all the mixture has finished.

a bowl of iced water and cendol maker over it
cendol in iced water in a bowl

Secondly, you make the sugar syrup by boiling1 ¾ cup/ 300 gr/ 10.58 oz palm sugar (which is also called coconut sugar or jaggery) with ¾ cup + 2 tbsp/ 200 ml/ 7.04 fl. oz water and pandan leaf. Cook until the sugar is boiling and becomes slightly sticky and syrupy. Set aside to cool.

Thirdly, boil and simmer 1 ⅔ cup/ 400 ml/ 13.53 fl. oz coconut milk with 1 ¼ cup/ 300 ml/ 10.14 fl. oz water and pandan leaf until the milk looks a bit shiny and it’s fragrant. Let it cool.

boiling palm sugar in a pan
coconut milk and pandan leaves

Lastly, assemble the Cendol in a tall glass by putting the sugar syrup, the cendol, and coconut milk respectively. Add some ice cubes if you like. 

Indonesian cendol in a tall glass with a spoon

Related posts

Thank you for reading the post. I hope you’re now interested in trying this recipe. When you do,  I will really appreciate it if you could share what you think about the recipe.

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Before you go, don’t forget to check my other Indonesian sweets and desserts that you may love.

Thank you and all the best.

Yield: 6 servings

Cendol: green rice flour jellies with palm sugar and coconut milk

Cendol in a tall glass with ice cubes

Cendol is a dessert drink made of rice flour jellies that you enjoy with palm sugar syrup and coconut milk.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes

Ingredients

Instructions

To make cendol:

  1. Place the rice flour, tapioca flour and salt in a mixing bowl. Give them a good stir.
  2. Pour about 300 ml/ 10.14 fl. oz of water into the flour mix and stir well until you get a smooth mixture. You can use a hand whisk or a handheld mixer or a handheld blender.
  3. Add the pandan paste to the mixture and mix again until you get a nice green flour mixture. Set aside.
  4. Get a large mixing bowl ready. Fill it with 2 cups/ 500 ml/ 17.59 fl.oz of cold water. And make sure your ice cubes are within easy reach and ready to use. Set aside.
  5. Boil the rest of the water (400 ml/ 13.53 fl. oz) in a cooking pan/ pot. Once it reaches boiling point, carefully pour it into the green flour mixture and stir it at the same time. 
  6. Put the mixture back in the cooking pan and continue cooking at low heat. 
  7. Keep stirring and mixing until the mixture reaches boiling point. It takes about 10 minutes when the mixture will become very thick and sticky like a wet dough. It’s ok.
  8. Once the rice flour is bubbling hot, quickly get your large bowl with water ready. Place the ice cubes in the water and get your cendol maker or potato ricer ready.
  9. Spoon the green gooey cendol mixture and put in the cendol maker/ potato ricer.
  10. Hold the cendol maker/ potato ricer above the ice water bowl. And press the cendol maker/ potato ricer down until you see the Cendol coming out and falling into the iced water. Keep pressing until all the mixture has finished. Set aside.

To make the syrup:

  1. Boil the sugar, ¾ cup/ 200 ml of water and ⅓ pandan leaf in a small cooking pan/ pot until the sugar dissolves and becomes slightly sticky. 
  2. In another pan, boil the coconut milk with one and ¼ cup/ 300 ml water and a 15 cm length of pandan leaf (if using). When it reaches boiling point, let it simmer for about 3 minutes before you switch the heat off. 

To assemble the cendol drink:

  1. Take a tall glass and put about 3-4 tablespoons of sugar syrup in the glass.
  2. Using a slotted spoon scoop the cendol and place it in the glass. 
  3. Add 2-3 big spoons of coconut milk over the cendol.
  4. You can add ice cubes if you like.

Notes

The Notes

  • If you can’t get pandan paste, you can use pandan extract for the flavouring and use the ordinary green food colouring. Note that Cendol always has pandan fragrance. So I’m afraid you will have to get either pandan paste or pandan extract
  • Ideally, you use palm sugar/ coconut sugar/ jaggery. But if you can’t get it, you can substitute it with dark muscovado sugar or dark soft brown sugar. 

Nutrition Information

Yield

6

Serving Size

1

Amount Per Serving Calories 1299Total Fat 109gSaturated Fat 96gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 6gCholesterol 0mgSodium 355mgCarbohydrates 86gFiber 1gSugar 51gProtein 12g

The nutrition calculation you find here is just a guide provided by online nutrition calculator. You should not use to substitute advice from nutritionists or health practitioners.

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10 Comments

  1. I love the colors of this drink – it looks so fun!

  2. Cendol is one of my favorite Asian desserts! This is a refreshing summer drink, so flavorful and refreshing.

  3. Heather Johnson says:

    what an interesting drink! i’m excited to try it

  4. OMG! What a color, what a taste! I made it today and enjoyed it so very much. I highly recommend giving it a try!

  5. My goodness, I haven’t had cendol in years! I had it in when I was in Malaysia and really enjoyed, though I think they make it slightly differently there – I look forward to trying this to see how it compares with what I remember.

    1. Yes, there are many different ways of making Cendol according to the ingredients. Please do try and let me know how you like this one.

  6. Kushigalu says:

    What a gorgeous and creative dessert drink to try. Totally loved it.

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