Recipes: Bo Bo Cha Cha Nonya Dessert

So I finally made Bo Bo Cha Cha – the Nonya dessert from my childhood… It’s not quite the same as the one I remember, but near enough… I modeled my recipe after the one on Nonya Cooking but I had to change a few things:

  • I started with 100g of sugar but found that to be way too much so I scaled it back.
  • I didn’t have pandan leaves so I cheated with pandan essence (hence the greenish cast you see in the photo)
  • Instead of tapioca jelly, you can use large sago balls and you will essentially have the same textural effect, albeit it will look less colourful.

Here’s what I ended up with:

So I finally made #bobochacha that #nonya #dessert I was so fond of in my childhood...


  • 140g yam (diced)
  • 70g purple sweet potato (diced)
  • 70g yellow sweet potato (diced)
  • 40g sago
  • 50g sugar
  • 250g coconut milk
  • pandan essence


  1. Steam the yam and sweet potato for 20 minutes.
  2. Soak sago for half an hour, drain, then cook it in a pot of boiling water until translucent. Sieve the cooked sago to remove water and add cold water to the cooked sago. This will prevent the sago from sticking together.
  3. Dissolve sugar into 250ml of water. Add coconut milk and allow it to simmer.
  4. Then add the taro, sweet potatoes, and sago.
  5. Allow the Bo Bo Cha Cha to simmer.
  6. Serve warm.