tapioca coconut milk with sweet potato

when it comes to chinese desserts, there’s nothing fancy about it. the chinese translation literally means “sugar water”. so you can imagine that cantonese desserts are mostly soup based, as opposed to cakes or pastries. the tapioca coconut milk is the basic dessert soup in which you can add other toppings. we used sweet potato, but items such as taro, mango, black rice are also very common. we happened to have a bottle of fresh sugar cane juice from the local juice vendor. if you can get a hold of it, use it! fresh cane juice is naturally sweet and is actually good for you.

coconut milk 1 can (400 g)
tapioca pearls 1/4 cup (60 g)
sugar cane juice 1 cup (or sugar 1 tbsp)
large sweet potato 1

  • soak the tapioca in cold water for 30 minutes, rinse and drain (yes they will expand by 300%)
  • in a pot of boiling water, cook them until transparent, about 20-25 minutes (use more than half a pot of water to cook the tapioca)
  • strain and run under cold water to remove the excess starch, soak them in a bowl of cold water to prevent sticking, set aside
  • peel and cut the sweet potatoes into small cubes, like the size of frozen carrots
  • cook in boiling water until soft, about 4-5 minutes, strain and set aside
  • in a large bowl, combine the coconut milk and sugar cane juice
  • add the sweet potato and tapioca
  • can be served hot or cold
tapioca caviar!

tapioca caviar!

naturally sweet and satisfying

naturally sweet and satisfying


9 responses to “tapioca coconut milk with sweet potato

    • yup! tapioca is a common ingredient in asian desserts, especially south-east asian. it can be used to make puddings too, like thai coconut tapioca and corn pudding. yum!

  1. my favorite chinese restaurant serves this exact same soup at the end of every meal and i’ve always wanted the recipe! thanks so much!

  2. Could you explain how to make tapioca tea? Cause I have some stuff to make it but I really don’t have a clue how to make them… Do you do the same thing as this?

    • hey katerina, i’m assuming you’re talking about the bubble tea. the tapioca for the tea is a little different… they are bigger and dark. so you’ll have to cook them longer and with more water. once they are soft to your liking, soak them in water to cool them down, much like how we did ours.

      as for the tea itself, it depends on the flavor you want. the typical one is a milk tea. it’s concentrated black tea mixed with evaporated milk and sugar. to get the black tea, steep about 3-4 tea bags in a cup of hot water, then add enough evaporated milk and sugar to your liking. then finally throw in a spoonful of tapioca balls to finish.

      hope this helps.

  3. Hi, I find it hard to pour out the tapioca pearls from the strainer after cooking it. Do you have any tips on how to pour out the pearls that are sticking to the strainer?

    • Hi Kelvin, it could be that it’s slightly overcooked. That’s why it sticks easily. Quickly dunk them into ice cold water after boiling to prevent further cooking.

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