Served chilled, its popularity lies in just the right balance of flavours and textures – the soft, sweet mango, light coconut cream, chewy sago pearls and slightly bitter pomelo popping in the mouth.






Skill level

Average: 3.1 (29 votes)

This refreshing mango soup was created by a Hong Kong chef in the 1980s. Hongkongers consider it a staple in the dessert world.



  • 150 g sago (tapioca) pearls
  • 150 ml evaporated milk
  • 3 ripe mangoes, peeled, flesh finely diced
  • 1 pomelo

Coconut syrup

  • 100 g yellow rock sugar, or to taste
  • 200 ml coconut cream
  • tiny pinch of fine sea salt

Cook's notes

Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.


Resting time: 15 minutes
Chilling time: 1 hour

1. To make the coconut syrup, place the sugar and 1 litre (4 cups) water in a medium saucepan and gently bring to the boil over low heat, stirring occasionally to dissolve the sugar. Remove from the heat. Add the coconut cream and salt and mix well, then set aside to cool.

2. Pour 1 litre (4 cups) water into a medium saucepan and bring to the boil. Add the sago and boil for about 8 minutes, stirring occasionally to stop it sticking to the bottom of the pan. Remove from the heat, then cover with a lid and set aside for 15–20 minutes until the sago is just cooked and transparent.

3. Drain and rinse the sago under cold running water to cool it to room temperature, then add it to the cooled coconut syrup.

4. Blend the evaporated milk and two-thirds of the mango until smooth, then add to the sago mixture and mix well. Scoop it into a serving bowl, then cover and chill in the fridge for 1 hour.

5. Peel the pomelo, then gently separate the flesh into small pieces. Add to the sago mixture, along with the remaining mango, and serve cold.


Recipe from Hong Kong Local by ArChan Chan, Smith Street Books, RRP$ 39.99. Photography by Alana Dimou, food styling by Bridget Wald