Blan Manje, a Coconut Dessert
Blan Manje has to be one of the easiest Haitian desserts I know. I first made it in college for a Country Fair. That day I got slightly annoyed because students kept referring to it as coconut jello and the Haitian in me simply couldn’t have it be called like a dessert bought in a box when I had put so much passion in it, and felt that the word jello removed its Haitian flair.
Today, I am sharing the recipe I used back then with my own twist of course. I add a hint of nutmeg and serve it with toasted coconuts. These two extra ingredients bring an extra oomph to this light dessert.
Please note that this Blan Manje recipe is a breeze as it simply asks for a can of coconut milk unlike the original recipe, which actually calls for real coconuts.
Indeed, the traditional recipe would have you make your own coconut milk. This is done by pouring warm water on freshly grated coconuts and extracting the juice, a process that can be a bit tedious but is worth it for a stronger coconut flavor.
Another variant of the Blan Manje is that some like to serve it with a prune sauce. I have never tried that version, so if you have or if you ever do, please drop me a line in the comments below.
Whichever method you use for the coconut milk, canned or homemade, please, don’t refer to Blan Manje as coconut jello. I beg you.
- 2 envelops of gelatin
- ½ cup of water
- 1 cup of sweet condensed milk
- 2 cups of evaporated milk
- 1 cup of coconut milk
- 1 tbsp vanilla
- 1 tsp nutmeg
- Toasted shredded coconut for garnish
- Sprinkle the gelatin over the water
- Mix condensed milk and regular milk in a small pot
- Add the gelatin to the milk mixture
- Warm on the stove until the gelatin dissolves completely
- Remove from the stove and add the vanilla, nutmeg and coconut milk
- Pour in a dish and refrigerate until it sets
- Serve cold sprinkled with shredded coconuts.