Recipe: Acai Bowl, The Healthy Dish That Tastes Like Dessert

One superfood, and one super recipe.
It looks like a dessert, and it even tastes like one – that’s the beauty of an acai bowl, the rare dish that’s as healthy as it is delicious. That’s because the dish calls for using the acai berry – a dark purple fruit that’s native to the northern reaches of South America – as a sorbet and tossed with a medley of delicious tropical ingredients like coconut cream and bananas sweetened with agave syrup.
It’s benefits are plenty. “Acai bowls are mostly made up of acai berries, which have been dubbed as a superfood,” says Chef Ling Ling Sim, Senior Sous Chef at Tanjong Beach Club. “Acai is known to have high amounts of antioxidants and have health benefits such as aiding in weight loss, aids digestion, promoting skin health, anti-aging, boosts immune system, boosts energy amongst other benefits.”

Chef Ling Ling should know. She churns out bowl after bowl for health-conscious guests at the restaurant and bar, which after all, comes with a pool and right next to the beach.
Here, she provides a recipe that’s good enough for at least 20 servings – that will probably last you through January and possibly February. While that means working with rather large batches, it’s also one less thing you have to worry about when it comes to realising your new year healthy resolutions.

The recipe itself is divided into three parts: Making the acai mix and the inca confit as well as the final assembly step for when you wish to eat.

One tip? “Keep the acai pulp and sorbet as cold as possible as it tends to oxidise quickly when it melts,” says the chef. “It starts to smell like fermentation when that happens.”
The acai bowl served at Tanjong Beach Club
The acai bowl served at Tanjong Beach Club
Step 1 Make the Acai Mix
Makes 20 servings

800g Acai Sorbet
200g frozen Acai Pulp/Puree
1200g frozen bananas peeled and sliced
520g Apple Juice
350g Chilled Coconut Cream
50g Chilled
Agave Syrup
45g Apricot Liqueur

1. Mix apple juice, coconut cream, apricot liqueur and agave together. Reserve in fridge. 2. Blend the Acai pulp and bananas with the liquid mix until smooth. 3. Churn in ice cream machine and freeze well.
Step 2 Make the Inca Confit
Makes 25 servings

100g Dried Cranberries
150g halved gooseberies
250g Dried Apricots
30 g Soft brown Sugar
1 pc Cinnamon Stick
3 Bay Leaves
750ml Hot Water

1. Soak dried fruits in hot water for 1 hour. 2. Drain and combine water, sugar, cinnamon and bay 3. When simmering and sugar has dissolved, add fruits and cook out for 20 mins or until thickened. Mash slightly and let cool.
Step 3: Assemble!
For one bowl

150g Acai Mix
1tbsp Inca Confit
2tbsp Granola
Diced Mangoes
Toasted Coconut Flakes

1. Portion Acai mix into frozen stone bowl. 2. Place a spoonful of inca confit in the middle of the mix. 3. Put mango, blueberries and raspberries around the inca confit. 4. Sprinkle the hazelnut granola and coconut flakes on top to finish.

Recommended reading: View more recipes here
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