How to Make Es Campur

Es campur (pronounced es champur) is an Indonesian dessert with colourful fruity and gelatinous ingredients mixed in coconut milk.

This dessert comes with a bit of a warning. I do think that for more western taste buds, especially because of the wobbly bits, meeting es campur could be either a passionate love or hate relationship. Mine is a passionate love, but then I’ve eaten these types of desserts ever since I was can’t even remember as a child. Oh, and the wobbly bits are agar agar, which is gelatin made from seaweed extracts.

Es campur recipe

Es Campur Recipe


1 bowl palm seeds
1 bowl jackfruit
1 bowl red agar agar
1 bowl coconut cream with agar agar
1 bowl tapioca pearls
1 small bowl palm sugar syrup
1 bowl ice
1 big bowl coconut milk

 Step 1: Make the Agar Agar

Mix red agar agar mixture with water and bring to boil. Let it set. You can either cut them into cubes or grate them (like we did here) as if you would grate cheese.

Red agar agar

Step 2: Make Coconut Cream with Agar Agar

Pour a small quantity of white agar into water and bring to boil while stirring all the time. Once its boiled, set it to cool. Once its nearly fully cooled, pour coconut cream on top while stirring so that the agar agar breaks up into smaller pieces and mixes with the coconut.

Coconut and agar agar

Step 3: Make the Tapioca Pearls

Mix tapioca pearls with water and bring to boil. Let it set.

Tapioca pearls

Step 4: Ensemble the Es Campur

Prepare all the ingredients. Put a small amount of each ingredient into a bowl. Pour come coconut mill on top. Add some palm sugar syrup if extra sweetness is desired.

Making es campur

Putting together es campur

Es campur 2013


  • With the amount of ingredients here, we had big bowls for dessert with Indonesian friends. Then we got to eat more big bowls of this for another three days, which was fine with me.
  • It can be traditionally served in a big pint sized glass instead.
  • The palm seeds and jackfruit were from a can as the fresh versions are not available here.
  • The tapioca pearls are usually the whitish transparent type. We used this one with coloured bits – I think they are a Chinese variation – because they were the only ones available in the Asian store at the time.
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  1. pianolearner 2013-09-27 at 18:08

    Unlike any desert I’ve seen before. Fascinating post!

    1. Sofia 2013-09-29 at 11:26

      Yeah, there are very interesting desserts in Indonesia!

    1. Sofia 2013-09-29 at 11:26

      My tastebuds think so too.

  2. Charlotte Hoather 2013-09-27 at 21:51

    I have never seen anything like this before, I eat rice pudding which I think is like tapioca

    1. Sofia 2013-09-29 at 11:27

      Now you say so, yes, it’s similar because of the starchy feel to it.

  3. Saskia (1=2) 2013-09-28 at 00:24

    That looks incredible Sofia! Such an amazing blend of textures and flavours. You’ve got me very intrigued to try tapioca pearls – so beautiful.

    1. Sofia 2013-09-29 at 11:28

      My mum gave me some tapioca pearls and I’m still wondering what I’m going to make with it. I can just imagine you making them first then I get the idea 🙂

  4. Kiss & Make-up 2013-09-28 at 09:33

    How fascinating, I always discover something new here.

  5. Guillermina Bósquez Stover 2013-09-28 at 17:57

    Beautiful photos, Sofia! The colors are just wonderful…

    1. Sofia 2013-09-29 at 11:30

      Yes Guillermina, aren’t they just?!

  6. The Novice Gardener 2013-09-30 at 12:01

    I think you and your mom made a lovely es campur, Sofia! The coconut agar-agar sounds interesting. I’m not sure I’ve had it before, so I think I’ll give it a try. No sugar in it?

  7. laurasmess 2013-10-01 at 01:18

    I’ve never heard of this dessert. It’s fascinating and aesthetically beautiful (love your photos!). I wish I had more ‘educated’ tastebuds… I find it hard to appreciate Asian desserts like this. I find myself wading through the bowl of chewy floaty bits whilst wishing that I had a piece of chocolate cake instead 🙁 I love the sound of the creamy coconut though. Yum! xx


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