Ingredient Name: Sago Pearls
Traditional Chinese Name: 西米 (xī mǐ)
What is this?
- The extract of the tapioca root which are rolled into balls (hence tapioca pearls)
- It is a form of starch which is commonly used around the world (to make noodles, bread)
- A lot of Chinese desserts incorporate the tapioca pearls (white kinds)
- There are the brown tapioca pearls (added sugar) which are commonly used in tea drinks (which originated from Taiwan)
- Tapioca comes in all sizes, flavours and colours – but are primarily white and when boiled become transparent
- When cooked and boiled as is, it becomes a chewy ball with a sticky texture
How do I prepare it?
- For round, white sago pearls, simply boil starting with cold water for at least 15 minutes
- You’ll know its completely cooked when the ball is completed transparent
Where can I buy this?
- Most Asian supermarkets will carry the white tapioca balls (in various sizes)
What is the cost?
- Tapioca pearls are relatively affordable
- A small bag cost around $10 HKD
- Tapioca is primarily made of carbohydrates and contains no fat
- It has a variety of uses and can store for quite some time (up to 6 months in a dry place)
- They are actually really fun to eat for kids (and adults!)
- After cooking the tapioca, immediately run it through cold water to prevent the balls from sticking together