I think saying that I'm totally obsessed with bubble tea is putting it very mildly.
I tried it for my first time in Singapore this year, and I'm hooked. Now that I'm back in Paris, I've been doing my best to try the city's bubbles!
So far I can tell you that:
1. Yummy Asian Food is probably the best one I've tried overall. I don't know about their food, but their tea was really yummy! The tapioca was perfectly done, and the flavours were just right. They have the really fancy-smanchy bubble tea machines, so I think this helps them out!
2. Bubble Tea Bunny (in the 13th arrondissement) was good, too. Very good. Dangerously good considering that it's RIGHT next to my school.
3. Ô Bubble is currently winning me over because they have a soy milk option (aka: vegan option), while all the other tea places that I have tried (for milk tea at least) only have regular milk. Most places offer the non-milk bubble tea... but... I like my milky bubbles!!! PLUS: they have loyalty cards (!!!), it's on one of my favourite streets in Paris, and it's only a cool 10 minutes walk from my house!
4. Gepetti Bubble Tea (only link I found in English, scroll to the bottom) really didn't do it for me. The tapioca was a bit tough, and the flavour wasn't really there. HOWEVER: their freshly squeezed juices and smoothies looked AWESOME... I would stick to their fruit based items if you find your way to this (adorable) little shop!
OKAY: So, four down, about a bajillion more to go. But, as a dedicated researcher to the bubble tea vie in Paris, I'll keep searching for my favourite! For now, I'll probably be sticking to Ô Bubble because they keep it vegan and umm, loyalty cards mean (eventually) FREE tea! (And their bagels looked slightly baller.)
And now - it's time, after all this research, for me to make bubble tea! I was strolling down Rue Sainte-Anne for Japanese food date night, when we made a pit-stop into an Asian supermarket and I (finally!!!) found tapioca pearls. If you're searching for tapioca pearls any Asian grocery store in your city should have these pearls!
Double Green Bubble Tea - What you need:
Matcha green tea is consistently my favourite bubble tea, so I'm really excited about this recipe today!
It's a lot of work, but the tapioca pearls will stay good in your fridge, provided they are covered with the syrup, for 3-4 days. You can prep this once, and enjoy as much bubble tea you want for half the week! With stores in Paris charging anywhere from 4-5 euros for a medium tea, and with all the unknown additives in the tea, I think it's totally worth it to make your own every now and again!
- 1 teaspoon matcha green tea powder
- 1 cup brewed green tea (1 cup = 250mL), chilled in the fridge
- 1 cup almond or soy milk
- 1/2 cup dried tapioca pearls
- optional: ice
and for the simple maple syrup
- 1/2 cup maple syrup
- 1 1/2 cup water
(Use a 1:3 ratio for your simple syrup for this recipe.)
Double green bubble tea - What you do:
First, prepare the tapioca. If your tapioca has instructions on the bag, then prepare it by the given directions. Mine does not, so I am taking a general approach. You may have to decrease/increase the boiling time according to your tapioca pearls!
Boil approximately 6 cups of water (for every 1/4 cup of tapioca, use 3 cups of water) in a large sauce pan. Add the tapioca pearls. When they begin to float, turn down the heat to a simmer, and cover the pan and cook the tapioca pearls for 15 minutes longer. During this process, stir the tapioca pearls every 3-5 minutes. I ended up cooking mine for 25 minutes... to be sure not to overcook them/make sure they're cooked just right, I tried a pearl every 5 minutes after the 15 minutes during the cooking process. With white tapioca pearls, it's normal to have a bit of white left in the center.
While your tapioca is cooking, make the simple syrup. I used maple syrup, but you can easily sub in honey or sugar.
In a small saucepan over medium heat, stir together the water and maple syrup for 5 minutes. We don't really want to reduce the syrup too much, only combine the water and maple syrup together.
When the syrup is finished, cool it slightly, and then put it in a jar for later use. Make sure the jar has a wide top so you can easily scoop out the tapioca pearls later on!
When the tapioca pearls are finished, flash cool them by transferring the pearls to a colander or sieve and then running cold water over them until cold. Shake off the excess water and dump into the jar with the maple simple syrup. The syrup should cover the pearls... if not, just add a bit more water and stir everything together well.
Now for the tea!
If your green tea is already chilled, perfect. If not, just shake the tea with some ice and it should cool it down just fine.
In a cocktail shaker, add the tea, matcha powder, and almond milk. Shake very well.
(If you don't have a shaker, use a jar with a tight fitted lid.)
Evenly distribute the pearls into two glasses, and then pour the tea over them.
This recipe makes 2 servings of bubble tea. Again: the pearls will stay good for 3-4 days in the fridge when covered in the syrup. The tea itself with the almond milk and matcha will also last around this time in the fridge (normally almond milk stays fresh in the fridge for 5-7 days after it's opened). The recipe is easily scalable, so you can double (triple?!) it to satisfy your bubble tea needs!
I have to admit: my pearls weren't perfect... most of them were cooked well, but there were a few stragglers that were a bit hard. I'll keep on working on my bubble tea techniques and keep you posted!
The tea, however, was just what I've been searching for! Not too sweet (add some of the maple simple syrup for more sweetness, if desired), the simple flavours of green tea, and a bit of milky-ness from the almond milk.
Baking soundtrack - Tunes to inspire your inner baker:
These guys are kinda adorable. I hope they make more songs and then find their way to Paris!