“Che” is a Vietnamese word that refers to any traditional Vietnamese thick, sweet dessert soup or sweetened porridge. Sweetened porridge is a kind of sugary flavored protein rich beverage.
As such, it may, with the addition of qualifying adjectives, refer to a wide variety of distinct soups or puddings, which may be served either hot or cold. Some varieties, such as “che xoi nuoc”, may also include dumplings.
Che are often prepared with one of a number of varieties of beans and/or glutinous rice, cooked in water and sweetened with sugar. Other ingredients may include tapioca starch, salt, and pandan leaf extract. Each variety of che is designated by a descriptive word or phrase that follows the word che, such as che dau do (red bean sweetened porridge) and che dau den (black bean sweetened porridge).
In southern Viet Nam, che are often garnished with coconut milk. Che may be made at home, but are also commonly available freshly made in plastic containers, in Vietnamese grocery stores.