Skip to content

Simon recreates one of his childhood favourites using little pearls of tapioca, which is the starch of the root plant cassava. A crunch of peanuts and hint of chilli add extra layers of depth for an unforgettably unique treat.

You will need

Serves 6

  • 900ml water
  • 6 tablespoons sago (tapioca pearls)*
  • 1 x 400ml can coconut milk
  • 3 pandan leaves, tied in a knot
  • 3 tablespoons water
  • 3 tablespoons organic sustainable dark palm sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon chilli powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine salt


  • 50g roasted peanuts, roughly chopped
  • Chilli powder

Share this recipe


5 mins to prep

15 mins to cook

  1. Step 1

    Cook the sago in the water until almost completely see-through, about 5 minutes (it will be quite gelatinous!). Strain and rinse with water to remove as much starch as possible. Pour into a baking tray and place in the fridge for 20–30 minutes or until it has cooled completely.

  2. Step 2

    In the meantime, put the coconut milk in a pot with the pandan leaves and 1 tablespoon water, bring to a simmer, then turn off the heat.

  3. Step 3

    In a small pot add the palm sugar with the remaining 2 tablespoons water and the chilli powder and salt; melt down to a syrup.

  4. Step 4

    Finally, pour the hot coconut milk into the cooled sago tra, drizzle with the syrup, and top with roasted peanuts and a pinch of chilli.

Hot tip!

*While sago pearls and tapioca pearls are technically slightly different ingredients (coming from different plants) they behave similarly when boiled and for this recipe, can be used interchangeably.

Recipe: Simon Toohey

This website uses cookies

And not just the choc chip kind! We also use cookies to improve your experience on our site – for example, they will allow you to ‘favourite’ your top recipes, which is very handy! To find out more, you can read our privacy policy