The Senegal international spent just over 18 months with the Tyneside club, scoring 29 goals before moving to Stamford Bridge last month.
However, despite electing to leave St James' Park, the 27-year-old reserved praise for Frenchman Cabaye, who he faced-off against last weekend in Chelsea's 3-2 defeat to the Magpies.
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The Paris-born striker has become one of the bigger names in the Premier League in recent years, and he admitted that the adulation he receives from his fans is often difficult to comprehend.
He added: "When I see the passion of the kids, when you say hello to them and they just go crazy, it's something I didn't expect."
Still, Ba says he is happy to receive compliments and feels that the praise helps him develop as a player.
He continued: "When you play good and people say that you have been terrific and you have been playing good football, that's something that stays and builds you and your confidence."