Sweet Potatoes in Ginger Syrup

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Sweet Potatoes in Ginger Syrup

Many Chinese sweet soup desserts are taken warm or even piping hot. The latter may seem counter intuitive especially on a hot summer’s day. However, there is a vein of traditional Chinese thinking that the hot soup will actually open your sweat glands and pores to help the body cool off. On the last bit I will leave it to my illustrious readers to decide for themselves. :)

As an antidote to the wonderful spicy food that I have enjoyed in the past several weeks, there are few better simple and sweet soups like this Sweet Potatoes in Ginger Syrup. This is my Hokkien (Fujianese) dessert counterpart to my previous post on Hokkien Hae Mee. A perfect afternoon snack would have been to partake one after the other. 8O

Sweet Potatoes in Ginger Syrup

The version that I grew up with has a clear syrup made with rock sugar or white granulated sugar. Some families use brown sugar, often mistaken for a savory soy sauce dish. The ginger is a must as it gives the soup an unmistakable “warming” flavor similar to that of Teh Halia (Ginger Tea). Chinese old wives tales attribute ginger with the property of “chasing the wind” out of the body. One just has to assume that this singular event is a good thing for your health.

Sweet Potatoes in Ginger Syrup

During my recent visit to Malaysia, I actually hankered for this dessert but made Bubur Cha Cha instead with the available purple sweet potatoes and taro. Ahh…all the hard decisions that one is faced with! Nevertheless, I made up for it by making the soup now back here in Minnesota where orange colored sweet potatoes are plentiful and the preferred color for this very dish. Now, that the wind has been “chased out” of me, I can happily share this recipe with you.

Sweet Potatoes in Ginger Syrup

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Yield: 2 to 3 servings

Sweet Potatoes in Ginger Syrup


  • 2 small (10 oz/300g) sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into bite size pieces
  • 2-inch knob ginger, peeled and crushed
  • ¼ cup (55g) sugar


Place all ingredients together with 2 cups (480ml) water in a medium sized saucepan. Bring it to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes.

Remove and serve warm or chilled.


Enjoy…..and have a wonderful day! 8-)

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22 Responses

  1. Raymund says:

    Nice and simple dessert! I never tried this before but I tried eating boiled sweet potatoes while sipping ginger tea :)

  2. This reminds me of my mom’s afternoon snack in the summer time! Delish!

  3. Shu han says:

    My mum does that too! Super simple but effective and yummy!

  4. MaryMoh says:

    I love sweet potatoes and I’m all for this …..mmmm….healthy and delicious.

  5. Wow, your pictures are stunning. Is this the new lens at work?? This is one of my favourite desserts. Chocolate anything is great, but too much leaves me with a feeling of surfeit – so jelak :P Where sweet potato soup is concerned (yes I call it that lol) I can never get enough!

    • Biren says:

      Thanks Denise! Yes, this is the new lens at work. I only needed to take a few shots with the baby and I’m done. I love it!

      BTW, I bought a pack of dark chocolate with sea salt from Godiva this time and it was sooooo good. I have to agree though that too much chocolate can be “jelak”. That’s why we need this sweet potato soup to “chase away the wind”. ;)

  6. PolaM says:

    These look truly delicious! I will have to try them soon!

  7. Haruna says:

    Looks so good, and great pictures too.

  8. Cheah says:

    This ‘tong sui’ is perfect to snack on and more fragrant with pandan leaves. I like mine warm!

  9. Shri says:

    Loved this Biren; not a fan of sweet potato but this is so tempting!

    Biren, I find the comment section very difficult; even if one types in the CAPTCHA code correctly, it goes on for at least 2-3 attempts before allowing a comment.
    4th time
    5th time

  10. Ramona says:

    I bet this was sweet and delicious. :)

  11. kitchenriffs says:

    A new way to eat sweet potatoes! Looks terrific. Ginger is one of my favorite flavorings, and I actually totally buy into the spicy food has a cooling effect. Or maybe I just rationalize because I like spicy? Could be. ;-) Nice post – thanks.

  12. mjskit says:

    Oh-I can see how this would be good warm or cold! So simple and what a perfect combination – sweet potatoes and ginger! Love this!

  13. One of my favourite tong shui! I like to boil the syrup with pandan leaves for 20-30 minutes to infuse the taste of the ginger, then add in the sweet potatoes! Love it!

  14. Lyndsey says:

    It does look good, I have never tried it before. I love food that bring back such good memories. We are able to get purple sweet potatoes more and more around here.At first is was just in my local Asian store, but now even in the Amish produce store that I love because it carries many local fresh from the farm produce.

  15. mycookinghut says:

    You made one of my favourite tong sui! Mom made this a lot when I was younger..

  16. I love sweet potatoes and adore ginger, so this has my name written all over it :)

  17. Jessica says:

    In Japan they call catching a cold “catching the wind”, so it’s a good thing to chase the wind away. ;)

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