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Stay in your Bubble Tea!


Bubble tea is becoming very popular here in New Zealand. Although a lot of people think it’s hard to make, it is actually very simple and a lot faster to cook compared to commercial dry pearls. If you want, you can even freeze the pearls before you cook!

Makes: 2

Cooking time: 20 minutes

Ingredients for Black Pearls:

55g Tapioca flour + extra for dusting

3 Tbsp boiling water

1/8 tsp black food colouring

1 Tbsp corn syrup / honey / sugar syrup

Ingredients for Chai Milk Tea:

2 cups water

5 green cardamom

2 cloves

1 cinnamon stick (3g)

2 tea bags (I use English Breakfast)

3 Tbsp Brown sugar



  1. Put tapioca flour in a bowl. Mix black food colouring with boiling water and add the hot water to the tapioca flour, mixing with a spoon or fork until you can handle with your hands. (Please make sure to use boiling water for this! Otherwise it will not work).
  2. Dust bench with tapioca flour and knead the dough until it is nice and smooth (2-3 minutes). 
  3. Divide the dough into 4 portions and cover 3 with cling wrap so it doesn’t dry out. Roll out one portion of the dough with your hand and make it into a thin log. Cut into smaller pieces (5-7mm) and roll into small balls with your fingers. Try to keep them even in size to allow an even cooking time. Make the remaining 3 sections of dough into small tapioca balls. 
  4. Boil 1.25L of water in a medium size pot and add all of the tapioca balls. Reduce to a medium high heat and cook for 15 minutes. 
  5. Drain the water and place tapioca balls in a bowl. Drizzle corn syrup/honey/sugar syrup on top of the balls and mix with a spoon – this will prevent the tapioca balls from sticking together. Set aside.
  6. To make tea, add all of the ingredients (except milk) in a small pot and bring to the boil. Reduce to a medium heat and cook for 3-5 minutes until spices are infused into the tea. Remove from heat, strain and let it cool. You will have approximately 350ml – 400ml of black chai tea. You can make this in advance and chill it in the fridge. 
  7. Divide tapioca balls into two glasses and pour in the black tea. Add ice cubes and milk if you desire, to make your delicious bubble tea!

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