With the sight of supermarket shelves loaded with colourful fruits of the season, it is hard not to notice that the sign of summer is near. Walking past the mangoes in the supermarket aisles, I can’t help but smell the sweet fragrance permeating through the air from the overly ripe fruits. It is as if the nectar from the mangoes are begging me to take them home.
And so I did.
It is the perfect time to make Mango Pomelo Sago, a dessert invented by a restaurant in Hong Kong in 1984. It was so popular that it has now become a dessert you can find in dessert stores throughout the city. The name sounds complicated, and the look of it is complex. But in fact, this is very easy to make. This refreshing, fruit-laden dessert, with its combination of coconut milk, will sure impress your family and friends.
This dessert was originally made with a fruit called pomelo, which is an Asian fruit that is in the same family as the pink grapefruit. However, because pomelo is not common in regular supermarkets, I opted to substitute it with the pink grapefruit, which makes it even better as it is sweeter than the pomelo.
MANGO POMELO SAGO
Yields 2 servings, or 2 medium-sized bowls.
- Coconut milk – 175 mL (equivalent to 1 small can)
- Milk – 175 mL
- Mango – 1 fruit, diced
- Grapefruit – pulp of 2 wedges
- Sugar – 1 to 2 teaspoons (you may freely change the quantity of sugar to your taste, and according to the ripeness of the mango)
- Small white tapioca pearls – 2/3 cups (make sure you purchase the small white tapioca pearls, like the ones here, and not the large ones)
- Blender or food processor
Step 1: Preparing the mango/coconut milk/milk puree
- Pour the coconut milk, milk, and half of the diced mangos into a blender or food processor and blend until it becomes a smooth puree. (Tip: I like to re-use the can for the coconut milk to measure out the milk, so I can make sure the ratio of coconut milk and milk is in equal parts.)
- Pour the puree into a separate container, and put it in the fridge to chill while we cook the tapioca pearls in Step 2.
Step 2: Cook the small white tapioca pearls
- Rinse the tapioca pearls under running water to wash away any dirt
- Boil a pot of water over the stove, make sure that there is a lot more water than there is of tapioca pearls
- When the water is boiled, put the rinsed tapioca pearls into the pot of boiling water and let it boil at high heat for 5 minutes. Don’t put the tapioca pearls in before the water is boiled, or else it will stick to the bottom of the pot. Give it a stir to make sure none is sticking to the bottom of the pot.
- After five minutes, when the tapioca is about half cooked (which you can tell if they are starting to turn transparent but there are still some white dots in the middle), turn off the heat, remove it from the heat with the lid on and let the residual heat cook the remainder. Cover it for 15 minutes.
- After 15 minutes, strain the tapioca pearls into a sift (use a sift and not a colander, because the holes of a colander are too large and it will go straight through) and rinse it with cold water to stop the cooking. Now the tapioca part is done!
Step 3: Assembly of the puree, tapioca pearls, and fruits
- Take the mango coconut milk puree that we made in Step 1 out from the fridge, and pour some into your serving bowl
- Add the tapioca pearls that we cooked in Step 2 into your serving bowl and mix until they are evenly distributed in the puree
- Add the remaining half of the diced mango into the serving bowl
- Finally, sprinkle the grapefruit pulp on top
- For a colder dessert, you may chill this in the fridge for 1 hour. It can last up to 2 days in the fridge (the number of days that coconut milk can last after removed from the can)