Blend the mango into a smooth consistency. It must be as lump-free as possible for smooth tapioca pearls.
Give the mango a taste and if you think it needs it, add the powdered sugar, along with one tablespoon of tapioca starch and the warm water.
Step 2: Heat the mixture
Tapioca starch needs heat to ‘activate’ and work the way we need it to create mango boba pearls. In fact, most ‘mistakes’ made when making homemade tapioca pearls have to do with temperature.You can heat the mango tapioca mixture in one of two ways, microwave or stovetop.Stovetop: Transfer the mixture to a medium pan and heat over medium heat, stirring constantly.Microwave: Heat the mixture in 20-second bursts, stirring in between. You’ll need to do this for around 1:30 minutes or so.
Step 3: Add the remaining tapioca
Allow the mixture to cool for just a couple of minutes before adding the remainder of the tapioca starch. Add it a little bit at a time, mixing vigorously in-between.
Keep adding tapioca until a shiny, non-sticky dough forms. It may be easier towards the end to knead it with your hands on a kitchen surface dusted with extra starch, but be careful as it is hot.As soon as it’s ready, wrap the dough with plastic wrap.
Step 4: Shape the mango boba pearls
Pull off a little of the dough at a time, keeping the rest wrapped tightly to stop it from drying out.
Dust your countertop with tapioca starch and roll the dough out into a long rope/snake that’s around 3/8 inch/1 cm in thickness.
Then cut the rope into pieces every 3/8 inch/1 cm apart or slightly more if you want bigger pearls. Keep in mind the pearls will expand when cooking.
Roll each piece into a ball, then dust them with tapioca starch to stop them from sticking together. Repeat this with the remaining dough.At this point, you could freeze any pearls you don’t plan to use immediately or go ahead with cooking them.
Step 5: Cook the mango boba
Place the pearls in a pot with boiling water and simmer at a lower temperature for 20 minutes with a lid on. Then remove the pan from the heat, keep the lid on, and allow them to steam for a further 20 minutes.At this point, the mango tapioca balls should be slightly translucent with a slightly ‘bouncy’ texture.
Drain the pearls through a sieve and rinse with cold water to stop the cooking process and rinse off excess starch.Alternatively, you could place the pearls into an ice bath – depending on which is easiest for you.
Step 6: Prepare the mango boba drink
Add the date syrup to the bottom of your glass – feel free to swirl it around the inside of the glass, too, to coat the walls.
Then add the pearls, ice cubes (if using), and the mango coconut milk. Enjoy immediately!
Boba syrup: you can optionally create a simple sugar syrup for the mango boba using the same technique I did for these homemade boba.
How to use: this mango boba will work within mango bubble milk tea, with just milk, with smoothies, mango juice, or even make smaller tapioca balls for a mango tapioca pudding dish.
The dough must be very hot when the tapioca starch is added; otherwise, it won’t form a dough correctly.
You may be able to ‘dehydrate’ the pearls for longer-term storage, but this is something I need to experiment with; then, I will report back!
For mango bubble tea: Feel free to use a black tea base mixed with milk or cream.