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I didn’t know what to make of sago when I first encountered it — strange slip­pery see-through little bubbles, like shiny beads or bubbles in a rock pool or, well, frogs’ eggs. If you allow your­self to embrace the tex­ture though, rather than fear it, you’ll grow to love this strange stuff. Espe­cially when it’s soaked in the sum­mery fla­vours of coconut cream, pas­sion fruit and mel­low caramel.

Freeze-dried pas­sion fruit powder can be found in spe­ci­al­ity food shops. While it’s a little expens­ive, it lasts for a long time, and the merest spoon­ful gives the most unbe­liev­ably intense hit of pure, bliss­ful pas­sion fruit. When the weath­er gets warm­er, my cri­ter­ia for food becomes more and more along the lines of ‘is from the fridge’ and ‘requires little effort to eat so I don’t get even more over­heated in the pro­cess’. This pud­ding meets both of those require­ments eas­ily, as well as that oth­er import­ant cri­ter­ia: it’s ridicu­lously delicious.

Coconut and passion fruit sago



  • 1 cup sago pearls
  • 75g palm sugar
  • ½ cup water
  • ½ cup coconut cream
  • Pinch of ground cinnamon
  • 1 tbsp Fresh As freeze-dried pas­sion fruit powder

To serve

  • Extra coconut cream
  • Fresh fruit, such as sliced mango or pineapple
  • Toasted coconut threads


  1. Bring a good-sized pot of water to the boil — use as much water as you would for mak­ing pasta.
  2. Care­fully tip in the sago and sim­mer for around 15 minutes. Stir con­tinu­ally with a sil­ic­on spat­ula (or sim­il­ar) as it sim­mers, to pre­vent any sago stick­ing to the base of the pan. Do this until the sago pearls have swelled and become trans­lu­cent and soft, like tiny bubbles.
  3. Drain the sago in a sieve — the holes in a colan­der are too large! Inev­it­ably, some pearls will stick to the sieve and be impossible to get off, so don’t worry if this hap­pens and do your best to scrape it all off. Trans­fer the cooked sago into a mix­ing bowl and set aside.
  4. Put the palm sug­ar and ½ cup of water togeth­er in a small pan and heat gently, stir­ring until the sug­ar has com­pletely dis­solved and the mix­ture is syrupy.
  5. Stir this syr­up, the ½ cup of coconut cream, the cin­na­mon and the pas­sion fruit powder into the bowl of sago.
  6. Divide the mix­ture between four ramekins/small bowls and refri­ger­ate for at least an hour.
  7. Serve with more coconut cream poured over the top, sliced fresh fruit and a sprinkle of toasted coconut threads.

Serves 4

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