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Nesia gula kelapa 245g palm sugar
Gula kelapa is a sweetener derived from any variety of palm tree. Palm sugar is sometimes qualified by the type of palm, as in coconut palm sugar. While sugars from different palms may have slightly different compositions, all are processed similarly and can be used interchangeably.
Palm sugar is known in many names and many variants, depends on its ingredient, production method, or the region. It is known as gula jawa (Javanese sugar) in Indonesia, and gula melaka in Malaysia. There is specific difference on palm sugar naming in Indonesia; if it is made from coconut, it is called as gula jawa or gula merah (red sugar), on the other hand gula aren (aren sugar) refer to palm sugar that specifically made from the sap of aren palm flowerbuds. Gula jawa has an earthy aroma and deep sweetness with a darker colour closely resembling molasses, while gula aren has paler colour.
Gula melaka is a type of palm sugar made from the sap of flower buds from the coconut palm or, less commonly, other palms. It can be dense and sticky. It is known in English as malacca sugar, probably because it originated in the state of Malacca, Malaysia (Malay: Melaka). Traditionally, gula melaka is made by first extracting the sap from the flower bud of a coconut tree. Several slits are cut into the bud and a pot is tied underneath to collect the sap. The sap is then boiled until it thickens. Next, the sap is poured into bamboo tubes 8–10 centimetres (3–5 in) long and left to solidify to form cylindrical cake blocks. Due to the labour involved in production it is often more expensive than the ubiquitous caster sugar. It is used in some savoury dishes but mainly in the local desserts and cakes of the Southeast Asian region.
A bowl of gula melaka sago
Gula melaka sago pudding is a dessert made with gula melaka and a common hot or cold dish of Peranakan (Chinese–Malay) origin. Other examples include chendol and ondeh ondeh, a ball-shaped dessert made from glutinous rice flour, filled with gula melaka, and covered in shredded coconut.