THAI EYE CANDY

A sweet swirl of vivid colour, these traditional Thai snacks are delightful to look at – and easy to make too.

When it comes to Alua, resistance is futile. These colourful and fragrant bites of delight never fail to capture the imagination of anyone with a sweet tooth. Once you’ve spotted these small flamboyant stars and let one melt in your mouth, you’re bound to reach for another.

Biting into the crisp, sugary outer layer and meeting the chewy softness on the inside, you find yourself enchanted by the hint of coconut – especially if it has been smoked with Thai aromatic candles. For a surreal taste, chill an Alua before popping it on your tongue.

These heavenly mouthfuls don’t take much to create. All you need is wheat flour, coconut milk, sugar, jasmine flavoured water and food colouring. Many Thai dessert makes are now using natural food colouring from flowers and fruit.

Butterfly pea flowers give you a purplish blue if you add a bit of lime juice, while red dragon fruit produces a sweet pink.

If you’re after a light green, add some pandan and you also get a pleasant aroma that will have your palate intrigued.