My Cultural Sweet Tooth

I've got a problem.

I have a crazy sweet tooth. If you're anything like me, you are down to eat a sweet treat anytime of the day. Seriously. Anytime. I even looked it up to see if this sweet tooth trait of mine is actually scientifically proven, and apparently some research says that people can inherit the "sweet tooth" as a gene. Strange.

As a lover of sweet foods, I greatly appreciate the variety I experience. I grew up in a mix of mainly three cultures: Taiwanese, American, and Tongan. Here are three sweet recipes that I've used over and over and still love!

Tongan: Keke

This is a fried banana ball that my aunties always make. It is simple and absolutely delicious. For a gluten free option, substitute the white flour for oat flour – it's still amazing.

Ingredients: 3.5 cups all-purpose flour, 1 cup white sugar, 2 teaspoons of baking powder, 3 mashed ripe bananas, 1 tablespoon vanilla extract, 1.5 cups water, and 3 cups oil (to fry with).

To make this dessert, first mix up the dry and wet ingredients in separate bowls, then combine them. Heat the oil in a deep pot until the oil is almost boiling. Drop ¼ cup of batter in and take it out when both sides are brown. The trick when you're pouring it into the oil is to pull back the measuring cup at the last second to form a better shape of a ball. Enjoy!

Taiwanese: Pearls 珍珠 (Boba)

Taiwan is known for its incredible street foods. Pearl teas are one of them. Here is a way of making the pearls for yourself!

Begin by bringing a pot of water to a boil. Pour in about ¼ pot of pearls (you can get them at a Chinese market/store). Once the water is hard boiling, cook for 20 minutes. Make sure you are stirring every 5 minutes to make sure the pearls don't stick to the bottom. Let it rest for another 20 minutes. Pour the pearls into a strainer, and run it through cold water until the water is clear. Add in cups of brown sugar to taste. Enjoy the pearls with your choice of tea – my favorite is sweetened black milk tea!

American: Chocolate Chip Cookies

There are thousands of chocolate chip cookie recipes. Chocolate chip cookies are one of my favorite desserts of all time, so while it is not difficult to please me, appeasing my palate to take the title of the hands-down best chocolate chip cookie recipe ever is close to impossible. I finally found my absolute favorite recipe from The Naughty Fork. Not only are the cookies thick and soft, but they also melt in your mouth. Here it is, the unbeatable chocolate chip cookie recipe. 

Images courtesy of the author. 

Cover image source: Jéshoots.