Monday, February 7, 2011

Red Bean Coffee Pudding

DECONSTRUCTING a delicious dessert in my head and attempting to reproduce it is challenging for me because of all the things that could go wrong (e.g. the correct proportions of each ingredient, taking care not to miss the subtle hints of certain spices, over- or under-baking). Moreover, making minor mistakes are much more noticeable in baking than in cooking. Despite the potential for catastrophe though,  I love to experiment even if it isn't successful.

After some trial and error, my mom and I unearthed the golden proportions for this amazing, and I am not exaggerating, coffee and red bean pudding. It has a custard-like consistency and uses agar to help with the thickening process. Upon making this recipe, I discovered that gelatin (what my mom used) is derived from animal protein, which of course, I am totally against. You can get a vegetarian gelatin, but I haven't scavenged yet. (Let me know if you find one!) Luckily for vegetarians, powdered agar can be substituted in equal measure for powdered plain gelatin.

A pick me up, but also a weigh me down. ;-)

  1. Combine coffee with hot water and let cool.
  2. Combine unflavored gelatin with cold water and microwave for 10-15 seconds.
  3. Mix gelatin mixture with coffee mixture.
  4. Combine heavy whipping cream and Azuki red beans.
  5. Distribute evenly among 4-5 medium-sized ramekins and refrigerate until firm.

Hope you enjoy!


Anonymous said...

When do you combine red beans and whipped cream with the coffee gelatin mixture? I noticed in the pics that there is some layering, how can i achieve that pattern?

MARGARET said...

Hi there!

You will want to combine the coffee with the gelatin mixture (refer to directions above), then just pour the whipping cream and red beans into that and you're all set! The beans will settle to the bottom of the pudding mixture, so you don't need to do anything--just let gravity take its course. ;-)

Hope this helps!

foodiephil said...


this recipe looks great, but I just want to ask about the red beans. Are we talking about Red Beans as in Azuki or Kidney Beans?

MARGARET said...

Hi! Sorry that was unclear. The kind I used were sweet Azuki beans, specifically the smooth paste kind that you can purchase from Asian supermarkets, and is very commonly used as a filling in Chinese pastries.