I tasted bubble tea for the first time at a small cafe in Hoboken, New Jersey about five years ago. I loved it. I haven’t tasted it since. After a friend inspired me to make my own bubble tea, I decided to experiment. I’ve spent the last several days getting to know tapioca pearls and I’m revisiting my love for bubble tea.
In case you’re not that familiar with bubble tea, it’s a tea beverage that originated in Taiwan in the 1980s. Most bubble teas contain a tea mixed with fruit and/or milk and often tapioca pearls. The type of tea used varies as well as the ingredients added. I opted for a green tea with black tapioca pearls. I visited a local Asian supermarket and stocked up on black tapioca pearls, matcha (see notes section below), green tea, and thick straws.
What I love about green bubble tea is that it contains healthy green tea, it’s naturally colorful (no dyes used), it’s a sweet and delicious treat, and it makes a fun drink for kids because they’ll love the color and texture of the chewy pearls.
A couple of notes:
- I recommend large black tapioca pearls. At first, I purchased large white tapioca pearls and I ran into problem after problem. They broke apart. They clumped up into a huge mass. They were mushy on the outside but starchy on the inside. If you know a secret about cooking these pearls, please let me know.
- Thick straws are a must with these large pearls. The pearls will get lodged in standard straws. I was able to get them at the Asian supermarket with the other ingredients.
- Matcha can also be purchased at an Asian supermarket in the tea section. This is a key ingredient to the green bubble tea. It’s basically finely milled Japanese green tea. It creates a powder and sugar is added to it. It naturally provides a beautiful green color and great flavor.
Have you ever tried bubble tea?
What’s your favorite flavor?