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  • Writer's pictureYiannoulla Burness

Tropical Sago Delight

Updated: Apr 12, 2023

These little pots of goodness just hit the spot if you are looking for something sweet and creamy. A tropical combination of mango and coconut makes for a perfect summer dessert. This sweet delight can be enjoyed at breakfast, make the evening before and chill overnight or enjoy as an after dinner treat.

Light and refreshing, simply delicious and easy to prepare.

Pureed mango, layered with creamy coconut sago, infused with strawberry sauce and garnished with fresh mango, native raspberries and a drizzle of fresh passionfruit.


TAPIOCA PEARLS: are made from the starch of the cassava plant also known as tapioca. They are little white balls that turn translucent when cooked and give texture to the dish without additional flavour.

EVAPORATED COCONUT MILK: can be used as a substitute for coconut cream in recipes, reducing the fat content. The brand I use is natures charm, available from health shops and some supermarkets. You may substitute with other plant milks or lite coconut milk.

RICE SYRUP: is made from brown rice. You may also use, light tasting honey, agave, maple syrup.

CORNFLOUR: is used as a thickening agent, mixed with water to make a slurry and added to the liquid.

FRUIT PUREE: you may choose whatever fruit is in season. I had mango and strawberries from last season in my freezer. Fresh mangoes are just starting to find their way into fruit shops and supermarkets.


Blender, small saucepan, serving cups

Makes 2 large or 4 small cups


1/2 cup small tapioca pearls

31/2 cups of water

1 1/2 cups evaporated coconut milk (or milk of choice)

1 - 2 teaspoons of cornflour* to thicken milk

2 teaspoons of rice syrup (or sweetener of choice)

1 1/2 cups mango puree

1 cup strawberry puree (for sauce)

1 -2 teaspoons cornflour* to thicken strawberry puree

2-3 teaspoons rice syrup (or sweetener of choice)

fresh mango, cubed

raspberries for garnish

passionfruit for garnish

*for gluten-free use gluten-free cornflour


*Add the water to a medium size saucepan, turn up the heat and bring to a boil. Add tapioca pearls reduce heat and simmer. Cook for 10 minutes, stirring sago frequently to keep it separated and prevent it sticking to the bottom of the pot.

After 10 minutes remove from heat, cover with a lid and let it rest for at least 5 minutes.

*Next pour sago pearls into a sieve, rinse under cold running water to remove starch. Then set aside.

*Pour evaporated coconut milk into a small saucepan, add rice syrup and cornflour that has been mixed with a little of the milk. Bring to a simmer on low heat, continue stirring so milk does not catch on the bottom of the pan. When the milk begins to thicken remove from heat. The milk custard needs to be thin not thick, if you need to thin it out add more milk a little at a time. Once the custard has cooled add tapioca peals and stir gently to combine. Set aside.

* Make mango puree by placing sliced fruit into a blender and blend until pureed. Set aside

* Make strawberry sauce by placing strawberries, rice syrup and cornflour into a blender. Blend until pureed, add a little water if needed to help with blending. Pour puree into a small saucepan and thicken on a low heat. Set aside and cool.


*Divide mango puree between cups

*Divide coconut sago between cups and gently spoon in, leave a 1.5 cm or 1/2 inch gap from the top of cup

*Next divide and spoon in strawberry sauce, start from the middle

*Garnish with cubed fresh mango, raspberries, drizzle with passionfruit

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