For my gluten free Creamy Almond Pudding recipe, I am using unsweetened almond milk, Chinese dried almond and agar-agar powder. Sweetened with agave syrup. This Creamy Almond Pudding recipe is not only gluten free. But also vegan, , paleo, low carb, dairy free, soy free, corn free, egg free and refined sugar free. Besides, many Chinese restaurants serve this extremely popular dessert. Often served as one of the many Cantonese dim sum desserts called almond tofu at a Chinese yum cha restaurant.
You may also like my other gluten free and vegan pudding and jelly recipes:
Chinese Almond Pudding
Almond pudding, also called almond jelly, annin tofu or almond tofu, is a soft, jelly like Chinese dessert. Traditionally made of Chinese almonds, agar-agar powder and sugar. Likewise, they also call Chinese almonds either apricot kernels or apricot almonds. Besides, it is the mellow part within the seed of an apricot. There are two types of Chinese almonds, north almonds are smaller and bitter, while south almonds are bigger and sweet. For dessert, choose the south almonds for distinctive earthy aroma and sweetness in dessert. Moreover, they use Chinese almonds in savoury soups like watercress soup, herbal soups and sweet dessert soups.
They use the term almond tofu for this dessert is to describe the tofu like solid texture of the pudding. However, they do not use the actual tofu made from soy beans as an ingredient. This agar based dessert is vegan as agar is a derivative of sea weeds. Furthermore, they create other variations of this dessert from dairy milk and almond flavouring extract. In addition, they use gelatin as an alternate substitute for agar. Gelatin is a transparent, colourless, fragile in dry form, tasteless food acquired from collagen taken from numerous animal by-products.
Nutritional Values and Health Benefits of Chinese Almond
Chinese almond, the apricot kernel, Prunus Armeniaca, originated from Armenia and are also native to Northern China. They frequently substitute Sweet apricot kernels for almonds. Likewise, it is rich in dietary fiber. Besides, apricot kernels or seeds contain amygdalin, often referred to as vitamin B17. Namely, they call both amygdalin and its synthetic composite as laetrile. While they often promote laetrile as an alternate cancer treatment. In addition, apricot kernels have monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats contents. In Chinese traditional medicine, practitioners use apricot kernels to treat respiratory problems, indigestion, high blood pressure and arthritis.
On the whole, the health benefits of consuming apricot kernels may include:
- Lower blood pressures;
- Reduce risks of heart diseases;
- Pain relief from arthritis;
- Boost immunity in the body;
- Support healthy digestive system;
- Lower bad LDL cholesterol in the body; and
- promote healthy skin with apricot kernel oil.
Nutritional Values and Health Benefits of Almond
On the other hand, almond, Prunus dulcis, originated from the Middle East and South Asia. It is an excellent source of vitamin B (riboflavin), vitaminB3 (niacin) and vitamin E. Besides, almond is also a rich source of minerals like calcium, iron, manganese, magnesium, zinc and phosphorus. In addition, it is also a good source of vitamins and minerals. Especially, vitamin B1 (thiamine), vitamin B6 and folate (vitamin B9), choline and potassium. Likewise, almonds are also rich in dietary fiber. Moreover, almonds assist in lowering bad LDL cholesterol in the body as a result of its monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats. Unsweetened almond milk is an excellent substitute for dairy or soy milk for vegan and people who are lactose intolerant.
- Blend the almond milk and Chinese almonds in a Nutribullet or food processor until you get a smooth creamy consistency.
- Combine and whisk the ¼ cup unsweetened almond milk with the agar-agar powder.
- Add the almond mixture and agar-agar mixture into a small pot and add in the agave sugar. Bring to a boil and simmer on low heat. Stir until the agar-agar and agave sugar have melted. Turn off the heat.
- Press the boiled pudding mixture through a fine sieve or strainer into a large bowl to remove any residual solid almond pieces.
- Pour the mixture into mini non-stick pudding moulds (8 litre) or any small bowls.
- Chill in the refrigerator until the almond pudding has set. Roughly 2 hours.
- Once set, remove the pudding from the mould by running a thin smooth edged plastic knife or any small knife, around the sides of the mould.
- Coarsely ground the pistachio nuts in a food processor or roughly chopped.
- Serve the puddings with the ground pistachio nuts and raspberries.