Chicken Tarkari (Nepalese Chicken Curry)

1 lb boneless skinless chicken thighs cut into bite-size pieces
2 tsp turmeric powder
1 tsp cumin powder
1 tsp of salt
1 tsp of freshly ground black pepper
2 tsp mustard seeds
2 Tbsp of cooking oil
3 cloves garlic peeled and finely minced
1- inch of fresh ginger peeled and finely chopped
1 large onion peeled and chopped
5 dried red chilies seeded and chopped
2 bay leaves
2 large tomatoes diced
2 cups of low sodium chicken broth
Small bunch of fresh cilantro leaves for garnish

Marinade the chicken pieces with turmeric powder, cumin powder, salt and black pepper for at least one hour in the refrigerator
Preheat a large skillet over medium heat and add in the mustard seeds and roast it until fragrant, take care not to burn the seeds. Remove from the skillet and crush them into coarse powder.

In the same pan, add in cooking oil and heat it up a bit and then add in the onion and saute until soft and translucent, then add in the garlic,ginger, bay leaves, chiles and continue to saute for another minute. Add in the marinated chicken pieces and stir fry until they turn into opaque color.

Add in tomatoes and chicken broth. Bring to a boil and then lower the heat to let it simmer until the chicken is fully cooked through. Have a taste and season with more salt and pepper if needed.

Garnish with cilantro leaves and serve with rice or flat breads if you prefer.

Ayam Masak Bugis (Buginese Chicken)

INGREDIENTS:
3 lbs mixture of boneless skinless chicken thighs cut into large chunks
1 Tbsp of cooking oil
4 cloves garlic peeled and finely chopped
10 small shallots peeled and thinly sliced
2 Tbsp of shrimp paste
2 bay leaves/ daun salam
3- inch of cinnamon stick
1/4 tsp of nutmeg powder
2 cups chicken stock
1 Tbsp of brown sugar
1 1/2 Tbsp of white distilled vinegar
4 cups of coconut milk
Salt and pepper to taste
2 cups packed of baby spinach leaves
1/2 cup of sweet corn kernels if frozen, thawed

Preheat a large pot on high heat. Add in 1 Tbsp of cooking oil. Add in garlic and the rest of the ingredients up to nutmeg powder on the ingredient list. Stir fry until fragrant, about 5 minutes.

Add in the chicken stock and bring to a boil. Add in brown sugar, vinegar, and coconut milk. Bring it back to a boil and then lower the heat and let it simmer until the chicken is cooked through and the liquid is roughly reduced by half. Have a taste and season with salt and pepper to your taste. It should be savory. Add in spinach leaves and sweet corn kernels. Stir to mix everything and cook just until the spinach leaves started to wilt. Remove from the heat and serve immediately or warm with plain rice.

Clay Pot Chicken with Ginger and Lime Leaves

3 cloves of garlic peeled and finely minced
2 Tbsp of cooking oil divided
3 Tbsp of chopped shallot
1 Tbsp of sugar
3 Tbsp of fish sauce
1 Tbsp of freshly ground black pepper
1 fresh kaffir lime leaves cut into strips
4 fresh kaffir lime leaves for garnish
1 lb of boneless skinless chicken thighs cut into bite-size chunks
2- inch knob of fresh ginger peeled and cut into thin strips

Place garlic, I Tbsp of oil, shallot, sugar, fish sauce, black pepper, and strips of lime leaves in a large bowl. Stir to mix everything. Add in the chicken and turn to coat. Make sure all the pieces are coated with the mixture. Cover and refrigerate to let it marinade for 30 minutes.

If you don’t have a clay pot, you can use a heavy-bottomed pan. Preheat the pot. Add in the rest of the cooking oil. Add in the ginger and saute for about 2 minutes. It should be fragrant. Add in the marinated chicken along with its juices. Stir and cook until the chicken started to turn into opaque color. Reduce the heat, cover and let it gently simmer for about 45 minutes. Uncover and have a taste. Add more fish sauce if needed. Remove from the heat and garnish with the rest of the lime leaves and serve while pipping hot.

Bun Thit Nuong (Vietnamese Grilled Pork and Noodles)

INGREDIENTS:
1 lb dry rice vermicelli noodle

THIT NUONG:
2 lbs pork shoulder/butt
1/3 cup chopped lemongrass
2 shallots finely chopped
2 cloves garlic peeled and finely chopped
1 Tbsp dark soy sauce
3 Tbsp sugar
3 Tbsp fish sauce
Pinch of freshly ground black pepper

FISH SAUCE DIPPING SAUCE / NUOC MAM CHAM:
3 Tbsp sugar
1/4 cup hot water
3 Tbp fish sauce
Juice of 1 lime
1 red chili seeded if you like and finely chopped

SERVE WITH:
1 large cucumber peeled, seeded, and julienned
lettuce leaves shredded
Do Chua
1/2 cup roasted peanuts chopped
Fresh Vietnamese perilla (tia to)
Mint leaves

Bo Luc Lac (Shaking Beef)

INGREDIENTS:
1 lb of beef sirloin cut into 1-inch cubes
8 cloves garlic peeled and finely minced
1 Tbsp fish sauce
1 Tbsp soy sauce
2 tsp dark soy sauce
1 Tbsp sugar
Pinch of salt
3 Tbsp of cooking oil
Salad:
1 red onion peeled and thinly sliced
1 red chili -optional seeded and finely chopped
1 1/2 tsp white vinegar
1 1/2 tsp cooking oil
1/2 tsp of sugar
Pinch of salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 small bunch of watercress, baby spinach, or arugula

INSTRUCTIONS:
Place the beef in a mixing bowl. Add in the minced garlic, fish sauce, soy sauce, dark soy sauce, sugar, and salt and let it marinade for about 30 minutes in the refrigerator.

While waiting for the beef to marinade, prepare the salad. Toss the sliced onions and chili (if using) with vinegar.

In another bowl, mix the sugar, salt, and pepper and stir to mix everything. Just before serving, toss in the vegetables along with the soy sauce mixture and toss to mix everything.

Preheat the wok or skillet over very high heat. Add in oil. Tip in the beef in single layer and let it sear for a minute undisturbed to create that nice brown. Do this in batches if necessary. Shake the wok or skillet to flip the beef over if you can (or flip it over with spatula) and let is sear for another 30 seconds. Then shake the wok or skillet again if you can and let cook until they are about medium rare or to the doneness you like. (I like medium rare.)

Toss the salad with the sauce and onion you prepared earlier. Place on serving platter. Arrange the beef on top of the salad and serve immediately.

Sate Padang (West Sumatra Beef Satay)

INGREDIENTS:
500 gr beef cut into cubes, brisket, flank, or sirloin tip steak
500 gr tongue
500 ml of water
6 Kaffir Lime leaves tear the leaves at the edges to release the flavor
1 stalk of lemon grass smashed with the back of cleaver to bruise to release the flavor
1 inch fresh galangal bruised
1 inch fresh ginger bruised
50 gr of rice flour mix with some water
Salt to taste
Bamboo skewers Soak in a water for 20-30 minutes so it won’t burn when you grill your sate

GROUND SPICES:
5-6 red ancho chili or you can use fresh long red chili
2 tsp of roasted coriander seeds/ketumbar
1 tsp of fennel seeds
5 garlic cloves peeled
5 shallots
2 inch of turmeric root
1 tsp salt

Parboil the tongue for about 15 minutes and then scrap the whitish stuff off the tongue and cut into cubes.
Place the meat and tongue in a large pot and marinade with the ground spices for 30 minutes.

Pour in the water and add the kaffir lime leaves, lemon grass, galangal, and ginger. Bring to a boil and then lower the heat to let them cook for 30 minutes. Remove the meat from the broth. Discard all the spices and herbs. Strain the broth. Have a taste and season the broth with salt to your taste.

Thread meat and tongue pieces onto the bamboo skewers, about 3-4 pieces of meat + tongue for each skewer. Get your grill ready and brush the sate with some oil on both sides and grill until they are slightly browned but not too long so the meat won’t toughen and dried up too much.

Bring the broth back to boil. Stir the rice flour mixture again before pouring into the stock to thicken up the stock (this is important step or you will end up with lumps). Continue to stir vigorously after that until it is thick and smooth. Immediately pour the sauce over the sate and rice cakes (if using).

Sprinkle with fried shallots crisps. It is best to serve while it’s pipping hot. I served with some pork skins to scoop up that delicious sauce.

Mee Goreng

INGREDIENTS:
1 lb fresh or dried egg noodles, instant noodles, or ramen noodles
2 Tbsp cooking oil
1 leek (cut into 1-inch length and wash thoroughly )
3-4 whole green/red bird’s eye chili (stems removed)
8 oz boneless skinless chicken thighs (cut into 1-inch cubes)
2 cups shredded cabbage
2 Roma tomatoes (seeded and quartered). You can use grape tomatoes too (halved)

SEASONINGS:
5 Tbsp kecap manis
1/4 cup soy sauce and more to taste
1/4 tsp white pepper powder

INGREDIENTS TO GRIND:
5 shallots
4 cloves garlic
6 candlenuts/kemiri or sub with macademia nuts

GARNISH:
Fried shallots crisp

If using dried egg noodles, cook according to direction. I suggest to undercook it because we will be stir frying it later
Place the shallots, garlic and candlenuts in food processor and process into a paste.

Preheat a wok or a large pan with oil. Add in the paste you prepared earlier. Saute until they are brown and really fragrant, around 5 minutes. Add the leeks and saute until they are limp and soft.

Add shredded cabbage and saute until they are soft, about 5 minutes. Add green chili (if using) and stir fry for about 30 seconds. Add chicken and saute until they cook through, about 2 minutes. Add the tomatoes and stir-fry for another 30 seconds minute.

Add the noodles in follow by the sweet soy sauce. Mix well to make sure the noodles pick up the color of the sweet soy sauce, add more if needed. Add soy sauce for saltiness (to your taste) and pepper. Continue to stir and make sure everything is well mixed and turn off the heat.

Garnish with a deep-fried shallots crisp and serve immediately

Rice Noodles with Chili Bean Sauce

300 gr fresh/refrigerated flat rice noodles or dried flat rice noodles
2 Tbsp cooking oil
2 cups snap peas trim both ends

AROMATICS:
1- inch knob of ginger peeled and finely minced
1 medium onion peeled, quartered and separate

SEASONINGS:
2 Tbsp chili bean sauce (dou ban jiang) or more, adjust the amount of other seasoning
2 Tbsp soy sauce
1 Tbsp dark soy sauce
1 Tbsp oyster sauce
1 tsp sugar

PREPARE THE NOODLE AND SEASONINGS:
If using dried rice noodles, soak in water for at least 2 hours. If you are using refrigerated sheets of rice noodles, they come in one large sheet or pre-cut. Microwave them for about 1 minute and then cut (if you need to) and then separate and loosen the noodle.

Mix all the ingredients for seasonings in a bowl and set aside.

Preheat your wok or skillet until very hot. You should see some smoke started to rise. Add in 2 Tbsp of the cooking oil. Add the aromatics and stir fry for about 30 seconds. Push them to the side and then crack in two eggs. Let them cook until the bottom started to settle and then scramble the yolk and break the eggs into large chunks and continue to stir fry for few seconds.

Add sugar snap peas and stir fry for about 3-4 minutes until they are soft but still have some crunch.

Add the rice noodles along with the seasonings. Stir to mix everything. The amount of seasonings may vary according to your taste buds. You may need to add more soy sauce to your taste. Stir to mix everything. The noodles will start to soften. It may take longer if you use dry noodles. Have a final taste and add more seasonings as needed. Dish out and serve immediately.

Notes: You can use other greens like brocollini, broccoli, bok choy, yu choy, mung bean sprouts.

You can also add in slices of beef, chicken, pork, or even seafood. Just remember to cook the seafood or meat first and then dish out to preven overcooking.

Chinese Egg Noodles

16 oz bread flour
1 tsp salt
4 egg yolks from large eggs beaten
4 oz water (added gradually; start with this amount)

PREPARE DOUGH USING A STANDMIXER:
Mix the flour with salt in a mixing bowl of stand mixer or large mixing bowl.

Attached a dough hook and run it on low to medium speed (speed 4 on kitchen aid) and gradually add in the water until the dough come together and let it knead until the dough is smooth and no longer sticky. You may need to add more water, you may not. Cover the dough with plastic wrap and let it rest for 30 minutes.

PREPARE DOUGH BY HANDS:
Mix the flour with salt in a large mixing bowl. Make a small well in the middle and add in beaten egg yolks.

Add a bit more water teaspoon by teaspoon if the dough is a bit dry. Gradually incorporate the flour with the egg yolks and knead until the dough is no longer sticky to your hand and smooth.

Cover the dough with plastic wrap and let it rest for 30 minutes.

SHAPING THE NOODLES:
After 30 minutes, the dough is soft and pliable at this point. Lightly flour your work surface and divide the dough into 4 and work with one dough at a time and keeping the rest covered to prevent them from drying out. I flattened the dough with my palms (flat enough to feed through the roller) and generously dust it with some flour and set the roller to 1 and roll and fold again and gradually up the setting to 4 until you get a nice “sheet” of noodles. It’s the thickness I like, not too thin and not too thick.

COOKING THE NOODLES:
If you plan to cook immediately, bring a large pot of water to a boil. Meanwhile, place this sheet of noodles and liberally dusted with flour and roll the rest of the dough. Change to cutter (I used fettuccine cutter for this) and feed it through the cutter and repeat with the rest of the sheets
Cook the noodles in a rolling boil water with a pinch of salt for about 1 1/2 – 2 minutes. It doesn’t take long to cook fresh noodles. Do not overcook them. Once they are cooked, drain the water and rinse with cold water to stop the cooking process. You may toss the noodles with a bit of oil to prevent it from sticking to each other (depending on what you are using it for). Proceed with your recipe using the noodles.

DRYING THE NOODLES:
If you don’t cook them on the same day, it is best to hang them on a drying rack to let them dry completely. Cooking time may take few minutes longer after you dry them.

RECIPE NOTES:
You may store the fresh noodles by freezing them. After you finished cutting the noodles, toss them in generous amount of flour and then roughly shape into several small round nest and place in a freezer bag. They go straight from freezer to boiling water to cook

Mee Hoon Kueh (Hand-Torn Noodles)

MEE HOON KUEH:
2 cups all purpose flour
1/4 cup water and add more as needed
1/2 tsp salt
2 eggs
1 Tbsp cooking oil of your choice

Mix all the ingredients for mee hoon kueh, except for oil, in a large mixing bowl. Start with about 1/4 cup of water and knead with your cleaned hands until it forms a large dough and no longer sticks to your hands. You may need to add more water or more flour to get to that point. Let the dough rest for at least 1 hour and cover with damp cloth. You can leave it in the refrigerator 24 hours prior to cooking too.

When ready to use the dough, Prepare a big pot of boiling water with some salt and 1 Tbsp of cooking oil. When the water is boiling, start pinching off small pieces of dough and flatten with your fingers and pulling it into thin wide sheets of irregular shape noodles. into the boiling water. Cook for about 1 minute. They will be about half cooked.

Transfer to any hot soup to finish cooking.

Sweet Vinegar Peanuts

2 C raw peanuts

Syrup
1/2 C chopped cilantro
1 tsp chopped mint leaves
6 Tbsp Chinese Black Vinegar (you can substitute with Balsamic Vinegar)
3 Tbsp packed brown sugar
1 tsp salt
1 tsp toasted sesame seeds (optional)

Preheat oven to 400 F. Arrange the peanuts in a single layer on a baking sheet. Roast until they are golden brown, probably about 20-30 minutes depending on your oven, mine did take about 30 minutes. Remove from the oven and transfer to a bowl. Set aside

To prepare the syrup, combine the cilantro, mint, vinegar, brown sugar, salt and sesame seeds in a small saucepan and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the liquid is syrupy and reduced by half, about 7 minutes or longer.

Pour the syrup over the peanuts and stir to coat evenly. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Pressed Rice Cakes with Chicken

2 Cups of glutinous rice
2 Cups of water
1 tsp salt
3 tsp minced garlic
2 tbsp vegetable oil
2 Cups of shredded cooked chicken meat
3 Tbsp toasted sesame seeds
1 stalk spring onion finely chopped
Salt to taste

Saute 3 tsp of minced garlic in vegetable oil until golden brown. Be careful not to burn them. Combine glutinous rice, salt, water and 1 tsp of the sauteed garlic. You can either cook your rice in a 2-quart pot for about 40 minutes until liquid is absorbed or your rice cooker. I used rice cooker ? Let them cool down after cooking.

Meanwhile, while the rice is cooking, combine the shredded chicken meat with the remaining of the sauteed garlic and 3/4 of the remaining garlic oil from no.1. Season with salt to taste. Mix well and set aside.

Line a loaf pan with plastic wrap and brush with some of the remaining garlic oil. Sprinkle with half of the toasted sesame seeds. Spoon half of the rice into the lined pan and work with wet hands to press the rice into an even layer. If the rice is still too warmed to handle, let it cool down.

Spread the chicken mixture evenly over the rice and cover with the remaining rice. Sprinkle with the remaining sesame seeds and cover with more oiled plastic and weigh it down by placing few cans or something heavy on top of it.

Let stand for at least 20 minutes. Invert onto a cutting board, remove the plastic, and slice into 1 1/2 inch squares with a wet knife. You can slice them further diagonally to form triangles too if you want. Serve at room temperature or lightly pan-fry them until crisp

Rempeyek Kacang (Indonesian Peanut Fritters)

INGREDIENTS:
2 cups raw peanuts without skin
2 cups coconut milk if you are using canned, give it a good shake
2 1/2 oz of rice flour
3/4 cup all purpose flour
Oil for deep frying
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
1 Tbsp coriander powder

INGREDIENTS TO GRIND:
4 kaffir lime leaves
3 candlenuts
3 cloves garlic
1/2 tsp of salt
1/2 tsp of sugar

In a medium-size pan without oil, stir-fry the peanut on low heat for about 5 minutes or so. Remove from the heat and set aside.

Use a food processor to process the ingredients to grind into paste. In a large mixing bowl, mix the flour, coconut milk, and add in the paste, turmeric powder, and coriander powder. Stir to mix everything. It should be somewhat a thin batter.

In a small-size (deep enough for deep-frying) pot, preheat enough oil for deep-frying. Give the batter a stir each time before you drop them into the oil. Drop a tablespoon of the batter into the hot oil and let it fry until golden brown on both sides. Work with one at a time. Remove with slotted spoon and place on absorbent paper towel to drain. Let them cool down completely before storing in air-tight container.

Perkedel Jagung (Bakwan Jadung – Indonesian Corn Fritters)

500 gr sweet corn kernels
6 oz shrimps cleaned, deveined and finely minced
80 gr rice flour
1 large egg beaten
1 tsp salt
1 Thai chili
Oil for deep-frying

AROMATICS:
2 shallots peeled
2 garlic peeled
3 Tbsp chopped Chinese celery leaves

Place 1/2 of the corn in a food processor along with the shrimp, shallots and garlic and pulse few times until finely chopped.

Mix the chopped corn mixtures along with the other half of the corn kernels, eggs, chili, celery leaves, flour, salt in a large mixing bowl. Stir to mix everything.

Heat about 1/2 inch of oil for frying. Lower the heat to medium and then drop one or two spoonfuls of the mixture into the hot oil and fry until golden brown. You may want to fry one first and then taste to see if you need to add more salt (as you can’t taste the “raw” mixture) and adjust by adding more salt if needed before frying more.

You can try to use egg rings if you have some to help hold the round shape, but you really don’t have to. If you use them, fill the ring with the corn mixture and then use the back of the spoon to kinda smooth it out to make sure there’s no “hole” so your bakwan jagung won’t fall apart later. Once the fritter is golden brown at the bottom, you can remove the ring and flip to the other side and cook until golden brown.

Continue with the rest of the mixture. You can serve with any of your favorite sweet chili sauce or just eat them as is.

Beef Chow Fun

INGREDIENTS:
1 lb flat rice noodles fresh or dried (1/2 lb if dried)
6 oz beef sirloin (freeze in the freezer for about 15 minute and cut very thinly)
2 Tbsp cooking oil
6 oz beansprouts

AROMATICS:
4 stalks green onion
1 inch fresh ginger

SAUCE:
1 Tbsp oyster sauce
2 Tbsp soy sauce
2 Tbsp dark soy sauce
1 tsp fine sugar
1/4 tsp white pepper powder

MARINADE:
2 tsp soy sauce
1 tsp dark soy sauce
1 tsp corn starch

PREPARE BEEF AND RICE NOODLES:
Put the sirloin in the freezer for 15 minutes before cutting. Make sure you cut the meat across the grain so you get a tender meat. Put all ingredients for marinating the beef and let it marinade for 30 minutes while you are preparing other things.

If using dried rice noodles, soak in water for at least 2 hours. If you are using fresh sheets of rice noodles, they come in one large sheet or pre-cut. If you are using one large sheet, cut into 1-2 inch wide.

PREPARE AROMATICS:
Separate the white and green parts of the green onions. Cut into a 3-inch length. Halve the white part of the onion. Set aside.

Peel and finely chop the ginger.

PREPARE SEASONINGS:
Place all the ingredients for seasonings in a bowl and stir to mix. Set aside.

COOKING:
Preheat the skillet/wok over high heat until really hot. You can start seeing smoke rising from the wok. Add in about 2 Tbsp of oil, swirl it quickly to cover the base and add the beef slices. Don’t stir and let them cook for about 1 minute and then a quick stir to separate them and dish out and set aside. Do not overcook the beef.

Scrap any crust off the skillet/wok, if any. Heat the skillet back until it’s stonking hot and smoking again, add another 1 Tbsp of oil (if needed) and add the ginger and white part of green onions, stir fry for about 30 seconds. Add the rice noodles, spreading it across the skillet/work and stir fry quickly for about 20-30 seconds, it might be longer for dried noodles. The noodles will continue to get soften. Don’t over stir the noodles or they will break apart and turn choppy. Pour in the seasonings and give it a stir and cook for another 30 seconds.

Add the beef slices back and stir fry again for another 10 seconds. Add the bean sprouts and green part of green onions. Stir to mix briefly. Stir to mix everything. Dish out into a serving platter and serve immediately.

Quick Kaya

200 ml canned coconut cream
50 gr palm sugar
50 gr white sugar
3 pandan leaves/screwpine leaves knotted
4 egg yolks from large eggs beaten

SEPARATING EGG YOLKS FROM THE WHITES:
Make sure you separate the egg yolks from the white very carefully. Leaving as little trace of egg whites as possible when separating. If there is a trace of egg whites, you can run the egg yolks through the sieve. This is to ensure you don’t get any lumps in the kaya. Otherwise, beat the yolks until smooth just using a regular fork is perfectly fine. Run it through the sieve if you want to.

TEMPERING THE EGG YOLKS:
Place coconut cream, both sugars, and pandan leaves in a saucepan over medium heat and just cook until the sugar melted. It shouldn’t be boiling, just heated to warm.

With one hand still beating the egg yolks, the other hand holding the saucepan with coconut cream, very gradually pour 1/4 of the coconut cream mixture. Then you can pour the egg mixture back to the saucepan. Stir to mix everything and then place this on the stove over medium heat.

Continue to stir over medium heat. The mixture started to thicken for me at around 8 minutes mark and continue to stir. It may still appear a bit runny, but it will continue to thicken once it cools down completely. Discard the pandan leaves.

Once the kaya has cooled down completely, transfer to a glass jar and secure the lid. Put in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.

Pressure Cooker Mango Sticky Rice

1 cup white sticky rice
1 1/2 cups water see notes
1 ripe mango
1 cup canned coconut milk
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1 pandan leaf knotted (optional)
White and/or black sesame seeds optional

Add 2 cups of water in Instant Pot inner pot. Put the trivet in there. Rinse the sticky rice in water briefly. Drain off water. Place the rice in heat-proof glass or stainless steel bowl. Add 1 1/2 cups water to cover the rice. Give it a quick stir and make sure all rice is submerged in water. Place this on top of the trivet. Close the lid, steam release handle to sealed. Press pressure cook and set to high pressure and use -/+ to set the time to 15 minutes.

When the sticky rice is done cooking, I waited for about 10 minutes and make sure that the float valve is down. Then turn the steam handle to venting. Once the steam is all out and stops hissing, open the lid carefully. The sticky rice should be soft and sticky. Remove from Instant Pot and pour half of the coconut sauce on the sticky rice while the rice is still warm and stir to mix. It may seem wet at this point. Cover to let the rice absorbs the coconut sauce.

While the sticky rice is cooking, pour 1 cup of the coconut milk in a saucepan, add sugar, salt, and pandan leaves in. Let it gently simmer for about 5 minutes or until the sugar dissolves. Do not boil the coconut milk. Remove the pandan leaves (if using) and use your spoon to squeeze out last few drops of coconut milk from the leaves if any.

CUTTING THE MANGO:
Peel the mango and cut in small cubes. You can use this hedgehog method for easier cutting: Slice both mangoes down either side of the stone. Take each half and score a crisscross pattern about 2 cm down through the flesh, stopping at the skin. Turn the skin inside out so the mango pieces pop up. Trim the skin off the middle bit where the stone is, then cut them into cubes as well so you are not throwing any extra flesh away.

PUTTING THEM TOGETHER:
Serve with cubes of mango, sprinkle with sesame seeds and coconut sauce on the sides for more drizzling.

RECIPE NOTES:
The amount of water may vary slightly depending on the kind of sticky rice. You may need to cut back the water to 1 to 1 1/4 cups if the result is too mushy to your liking.