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Sago soup with taro in a pot with rock sugar beside it
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5 from 9 votes

Sago Soup With Taro (西米露)

This Sago Soup with Taro is the ultimate dessert fix. Creamy with taro, it's perfect for cozy nights and uses just six ingredients!
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time35 mins
Total Time50 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Asian, Chinese, Vietnamese
Servings: 8
Calories: 564kcal
Author: Jeannette

Equipment

  • Sieve
  • Food processor

Ingredients

  • 1 kg / 2.2 lb taro
  • 1/2 US cup sago (also known as tapioca pearls)
  • 150 g / 0.33 lb rock sugar (or to taste)
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 500 mL / 2 US cup coconut cream (or coconut milk or evaporated milk)
  • 1 1/2 L / 6 US cup water (for boiling sago)
  • 3 L / 12 US cup water (for the ice bath)
  • ice
  • 1 L / 4 US cup water (for the rock sugar)

Instructions

  • Bring 1 1/2 L (6 US cups) water to boil in a pot and pour the tapioca pearls in. Stir continuously for 10 minutes to avoid clumping and sticking to the pot's base.
  • Turn off the heat and put the lid of the pot on, then let it cook in the residual heat for 20 minutes.
    Note: By the end of this stage, the pearls will become completely transparent and sink to the bottom. If they are still white on the inside, let it sit in the pot for longer.
  • Pour the pearls out through a sieve while running under cold water to loosen them.
  • Prepare an ice bath with enough water to completely submerge the pearls. Pour the sago into the ice bath.
    Note: This step will keep the sago tight and springy as it stops the cooking process.
  • Peel and cut the taro into small chunks, roughly 1 cm (0.4") thick.
  • Steam the root vegetable for 15 minutes or until firm and slightly undercooked.
    Note: Keep in mind that the ingredients will be cooked again in the pot so there is no need to completely cook it. But if you prefer a softer and mushier Sago Soup with Taro, steam it for an extra 3 minutes or until every piece is completely cooked.
  • Use a blender to blitz the steamed pieces with coconut cream until it forms a smooth paste. For every 1/2 US cup, blitz it with 1/2 tbsp coconut cream and 3 tbsp water.
    Leave half of the pieces unblended to enjoy as chunks.
  • Bring 1L water to a boil and melt the rock sugar until completely dissolved, then pour the liquid into a bowl.
  • In the same pot, bring the coconut cream to a simmer.
  • Add the paste in and stir until combined.
  • Pour in the taro chunks, sugar water and salt, stirring to combine all the ingredients.
  • When mixed, drain the tapioca pearls and add them into the dessert pot.
  • Stir until well combined and serve immediately as is or refrigerate to enjoy cold!

Notes

  • Avoid overstirring. Since the ingredients are already cooked before being mixed together, stirring too much will break and mush the sago soup together.
  • Use fresh taro. Frozen versions are readily available in Asian supermarkets, but nothing compares to the robust flavors of fresh vegetables.
  • Make it your own. While this recipe only uses a handful of ingredients, you can certainly add more of your favorite toppings. Nuts, glutinous rice balls, corn, sweet potato, bananas and pumpkins are great ways to add more flavor and texture.
  • You can buy all the ingredients from Asian supermarkets. If fresh taro is unavailable, use frozen ones found in the freezer section.
  • For the sago soup base, coconut cream or coconut milk can be used. If you prefer a Chinese take on this dessert, use coconut milk or evaporated milk. A Vietnamese version will use coconut cream instead.

Nutrition

Calories: 564kcal | Carbohydrates: 89g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 22g | Saturated Fat: 19g | Sodium: 210mg | Potassium: 1679mg | Fiber: 12g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 190IU | Vitamin C: 13mg | Calcium: 135mg | Iron: 3mg