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Bubble tea

A speciality from Taiwan - cold strong milky tea, flavoured with red bean paste and poured over large tapioca pearls. The perfect afternoon tea on a hot day!


Tapioca pearls:

1/3 cup Tapioca Pearls (preferably large 'bubble tea' ones - try a Chinese supermarket)
3 cups water, boiling

Place the pearls in the boiling water (they should float - give them a stir to separate them out and move them off the bottom if they don't). Boil with the lid on till clear (or mostly so - approx 60 min.). Drain and rinse, then divide between three large glasses.

Classic Bubble Tea:

1 1/2 cups very strong sweet jasmine or black tea, chilled (I use 3T sugar and 1 dsp tea leaves)
1 1/2 cup milk
4T (125g) red bean paste

Combine in a blender until frothy. Pour over cooked pearls in large glasses and serve with a teaspoon or, if you can find them, extra thick bubble tea straws.

Makes 3 large servings.

Note: if making in advance, keep the pearls and tea mixture separate. The pearls will congeal. Separate out by pouring a little boiling water on them, then pouring off the water. Whizz the tea in the blender again just before serving to make frothy.