We have stocked a new pantry item this week, boba. Typically not an item you would find in my pantry, but someone is experimenting with cooking and really wanted to try their hand at making bubble tea.
Black “Boba” are extra large tapioca pearls, usually made with brown sugar. When boiled they turn a deep brown black colour. They are the distinct black pearls at the bottom of bubble tea. Most often found in teas, but can grace milkshakes, smoothies even desserts like ice cream too. When cooked properly, tapioca pearls have a distinct texture and chew. Similar to a chewy firm jello. It is very child like, and fun.
Bubble “teas” are made many different things now, but originally these Taiwan treats were made with rich thick brown sugar syrups, condensed milk and iced cold black or green tea. I have had an “authentic” milk tea bubble teas from big city China town shops, I loved the boba texture, it was good, but over all too sweet for me for my tastes. It never dawned on me, growing up in my small rural town with limited access to Asian ingredients, that I could make it myself – that was unheard of- let alone change up the drink to my taste.
With advent of Amazon and the world at our fingers, my kid’s tapioca pearls arrived in less then 12 hours. We were googling Asian drink recipes, making tea an hour later. How the times have changed.
We used peppermint as our jump point, as our kids don’t do black teas yet. But feel free to use what ever tea you enjoy! We opted to do non dairy almond milk instead of the traditional condensed.
It really is a wonderfully refreshing drink for summer, making it yourself allows you to control caffeine and sugar content!
Peppermint Boba tea
- 1/3 cup uncooked boba pearls
- Pot of boiling water
- Bowl of ice water
- 2 TBS Manuka honey + extra for optional sweetening
- 4 oz cold peppermint tea
- 4 oz cold non dairy milk. (try almond, soy or a chocolate non dairy)
- Reusable Boba extra wide straw -optional
Cook boba according to package – this varies from 5 min to 25min depending if instant or quick cooking vs “raw” boba.
if you have raw boba with no instructions typically this will work: place boba in boiling water, stir and when floating set timer to cook boba for 25 min. – strain and place bowl of ice water to stop cooking for 5 min. Strain and toss with Manuka honey.
**only cook enough boba for your current drinks they do not keep well, most sites say only for a day. You can freeze cooked boba apparently but I have never done it myself.
To make the Bubble tea:
Layer Cooked honey boba in bottom of glass, pour cold tea over and top with non dairy milk. You can sweeten as much or little as desired.
To Frappe: layer boba in drinking glass. In a blender with 1-2 cups of ice add cold tea and non dairy milk. Blend on crushed ice setting of blender. Pour over boba in glass. Garnish with whipped non dairy cream mint sprig or boba pearls