Monday, 24 March 2014

Bubble Tea


Bubble Tea

Fortune Cookie


Thou shalt lighten up

Bubble tea hits London.

I saw two boba or bubble tea shops in Chinatown. One, not this one, had a long queue outside.

Traditionally bubble tea is a beverage made from a mixture of Taiwanese black tea, milk, condensed milk or honey and tapioca pearls. It was brought together as a commercial drink in the 1980s but original concoction was a cold tea and tapioca pudding blended by a woman who specialised in dessert making in Taiwan. It was know then as fen yuan 芬元.

The pearls can be a trouble to cook before they are added to the syrup mixture. They stick together in a glutinous mass so be prepared to stir and supervise. The rest of the drink is relatively straightforward. See below. This is a tea you can chew, have hot, cold or chilled.

Feel free to adjust this basic bubble tea recipe according to your own tea and flavoring preferences adding: mint, fruit syrup, green tea, rainbow pearls, evaporated milk.

If you like this blog visit its twin GuerillaZ the travel blog at the end of this link:

·         3 ounces tapioca pearls
·         sugar syrup
·         1 cup brewed tea (Chinese black tea or lychee tea is good) 
·         1 cup milk (or to taste)
·         Ice cubes
·         Tapioca Pearls
·         1 part tapioca pearls
·         4 parts (or more) water
·         Sugar Syrup
·         2 parts white sugar
·         1 part brown sugar
·         3 parts water

Prepare the sugar syrup for the tapioca pearls (see below).

Prepare the tapioca pearls (see below)

Allow the tea to cool to room temperature.  Add the milk.

To make the tapioca pearls: when making the tapioca pearls, which are the chief ingredient in Asian bubble teas, please note that the pearls expand considerably when cooked. Please ensure that you use a large pot. As a rule, the more pearls cooked, the more water should be used: that is, the water to pearl ratio must be higher. 

Boil the water. Add the pearls to the boiling water and boil for 30 minutes. Stir occasionally to make sure the pearls are not sticking to each other or to the pot. Turn off heat and let the pearls steep in the water for another 30 minutes with the lid of the cooking pot on.

Drain the tapioca pearls and rinse with cold water to cool them down. Place them in sugar syrup (sugar and water solution - see below). Make sure that the pearls are covered. Stir the pearls well. They are now ready to enjoy.

To make the sugar syrup: in a saucepan, bring the water to boil. Add the sugars. Reduce heat and heat until the sugar crystals are dissolved. Remove from heat. 

Add the sugar syrup, milk and tea mix, and the ice cubes to a cocktail shaker and shake well. 

Pour the shaken mixture into the glass with the tapioca pearls. Serve with a thick straw.

Boba tea is fun and really quite nice on the palate. 

Happy tea drinking!

Monday, 3 March 2014

In a Cup of Tea

In a Cup of Tea

Fortune Cookie

Disobedience is the true foundation of liberty ~ Henry David Thoreau

"In a Cup of Tea";

Kobayashi's  Award-Winning film  won the Cannes Special Prize in the 1960s. This is the film Trailer: -

The tea story lies at the end of the film.

"In a Cup of Tea" is adapted from Lafcado Hearn's Kotto: Being Japanese Curios, with Sundry Cobwebs (1902).

A writer who is anticipating a visit from the publisher, keeps seeing faces in a cup of tea. He is writing a story about a samurai's squire who begins to see a face in his cup of tea. We only meet the writer at the story's end.

The film won the Palm D'or Special Jury Prize at Cannes in 1965.

For more on Japanese teas visit this excellent website:

The cup of spilled tea haunts the squire.

The squire sees the soul in his cup of tea. Eventually he drinks the tea with the image in it.

The soul about to be swallowed.

The meaning of the stories are left unexplained and is for the audience to determine. That the stories come from Japanese folk tales suggest a way to read such a story. All four stories are about the spirit world and the need to have a respect for the dead, the need to monitor personal behaviour and respect. 

If you visit this blog visit its twin GuerillaZ  the travel blog  at the end of this link:

Happy Tea Drinking!