Tapioca pudding is a classic dessert. The combination of tapioca and coconut milk with a topping of fruit jam or coulis is a common dish. Some refer to this as an old fashioned recipe, but we like it. It is naturally gluten-free and by adding a twist with the addition of fresh persimmon jam you can’t go wrong.
We recommend using coconut milk but if you want a creamy, fuller texture it’s better to use coconut cream. Using coconut sugar instead of regular granulated sugar balances the sweetness of the pudding with the jam. You also have the choice of making a thick and creamy dessert or more liquid texture like a runny custard.
We layer the tapioca pudding with the freshly made persimmon jam. It looks good and when scooping into the glass or verrine, you will always get a combination of both flavours.
What Is Tapioca?
It is the starch from the roots of the cassava plant. It is often used as a thickening agent, and it is no different when making pudding. Tapioca is available as flour, but the small pearls are best to make tapioca pudding. Tapioca pearls are usually opaque when raw and become supple and translucent when cooked. A positive is that it does not lose quality when reheating or freezing.
Related: Different kinds of starch
How to cook tapioca pearls?
Strain the tapioca pearls and rinse under cold water to remove the excess of starch. Bring a large amount of water to the boil, approximately eight to ten times the volume of water for 1 volume of dried tapioca. Taste a tapioca pearl for doneness, it should be chewy, but al dente. The cooked tapioca pearls should look translucent around the edges, and opaque in the centre.
Depending on the brand, some tapioca pearls need to soak before use, but all the Asian brands don’t need soaking and can be boiled directly after rinsing. In general, the volume doubles, and 1 cup of dried tapioca pearls makes 2 cups of cooked tapioca pearls.
Tapioca Pudding with Persimmon Jam
- 500 gr persimmon jam
- 100 gr tapioca pearls
- 1 L water
- 250 ml coconut milk
- 30 gr coconut sugar
- 1 pinch salt
- Bring water to the boil, add the dried tapioca pearls, stir and bring to the boil again.
- Keep stirring occasionally as tapioca sticks easily, reduce the heat and simmer to cook the tapioca pearls for 20 minutes.
- When the tapioca pearls are translucent, rinse them under cold water and drain.
- Cook the coconut milk with the sugar and a pinch of salt for 5 minutes.
- Add the cooked tapioca pearls into the coconut milk, stir to combine and cook for another 5 minutes.
- Divide the coconut tapioca pearls into the dessert glasses and top with the persimmon jam. Cover with another layer of coconut tapioca and finish with the persimmon jam.
- Refrigerate the pudding for 2 hours before serving.