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Boba/Pearls/Tapioca - how to make?

k
kcchan Jan 29, 2007 04:50 PM

Here in Indiana, there's only one pearl tea joint, and it's terrible. Absolutely terrible. They use the ready-made tapioca balls and microwave them. Ugh! My fiance and I are going through pearl tea withdrawl and are too busy to trek out to Chicago on the weekends to get good pearl tea. Does anyone know how to make those pearls so darned tasty and chewy? I really love the pearls at Tapioca Express back in California, but have no idea how to replicate them. I've tried in the past, but with no success. Any tips?

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  1. septocaine_queen Jan 29, 2007 08:24 PM

    I don't know about making them but I have bought them uncooked and frozen at 99 ranch and boiled them up myself. But I guess the "new thing" is flavored conjac jelly pieces instead of boba. I had a really good green apple snow bubble with green apple jelly in OC recently.

    1. k
      kcchan Jan 29, 2007 08:30 PM

      I'm looking at how to boil them properly so they get all chewy, not looking to manifest brown tapioca pearls out of whatever yumminess they're made of. I've always failed miserably in the past - any tips?

      1 Reply
      1. re: kcchan
        mintchip Jan 30, 2007 04:05 PM

        you are not alone on this - i have ruined several attempts myself. so frustrating! maybe it's time to give it another shot...

      2. septocaine_queen Jan 29, 2007 08:43 PM

        1 cup tapioca pearls
        8 cups water
        some say 7:1 ratio

        1) Boil water in a large pot.
        2) Add in the tapioca pearls to boiling water.
        3) Stir initially to prevent tapioca from sticking to the bottom of the pot. The tapioca pearls should float in the water.
        4) Boil for about 25 minutes with the cover on.
        5) Turn the heat off and let the tapioca sit in the water for another 25 minutes.
        6) Rinse the cooked tapioca pearls in warm water and drain out the water.
        7) Cover with bubble tea fructose, sugar syrup, brown sugar whatever syrup so they don't dry out.

        If that is what you are doing now, you could vary boil times or let them sit shorter or longer in the hot water after boiling. Experimentation is fun.

        7 Replies
        1. re: septocaine_queen
          o
          OnceUponABite Jan 30, 2007 05:00 PM

          definitely got to experiement yourself with the times. I'd usually do this. Cover with plenty of water, bring to a boil, the shut off the heat and let it sit covered for twenty minutes, check the pearls and repeat the boiling and sitting around time. It'll take a few rounds. If you try to boil it straight you are in for a long time.

          1. re: OnceUponABite
            s
            Saucey Jan 30, 2007 05:54 PM

            Can anyone tell me where you get the black bobas? The only large boba I have seen in asian markets are white.

            1. re: Saucey
              k
              kcchan Jan 30, 2007 08:58 PM

              I've usually seen them at asian markets, but I guess it depends market to market. You can also find them online - I've never bought them online, though, so I have no tips or recommendations.

              1. re: Saucey
                Scrapironchef Apr 2, 2007 03:06 PM

                http://www.bubbleteasupply.com/store/...

                Also links to how to cook them properly.

                1. re: Saucey
                  m
                  MplsGirl Oct 4, 2007 01:10 PM

                  There's a great Vietnamese joint in Minneapolis that boils their pearls in Jasmine tea - I think that might be why they're black and yummy.

                  1. re: MplsGirl
                    k
                    kary Oct 4, 2007 01:13 PM

                    MplsGirl -- Where in Minneapolis? (St. Paul girl.)

                  2. re: Saucey
                    s
                    sissy loo Nov 28, 2007 06:22 AM

                    black boba is JUST food coloring! You prepare it like normal - but put drops of food coloring in the water....I'm not sure what the ratio is if you buy the regular 4 color food colorings in the grocery store - some specialty stores have black food coloring....

              2. t
                TJPizzeria Apr 2, 2007 01:12 AM

                Wait for next coming summer 2007, there will be boba milk tea open at slightly north of 465 and michigan road next Subway

                1. t
                  TJPizzeria Apr 2, 2007 07:01 PM

                  Californian style

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: TJPizzeria
                    j
                    justagthing Apr 3, 2007 12:30 AM

                    do you mean california style boba? as apposed to what other style? just curious

                  2. v
                    violabratsche Nov 28, 2007 12:59 PM

                    I've been experimenting, and I really have trouble getting the pearls at the right consistancy. They're usually WAY too chewy. The other thing I find is that I like them to have a little flavour, so I've tried cooking them with a little sugar, and a little black tea. It just wasn't right, but a lot better. I live right in the middle of an asian area where there are a lot of places to get bubble tea, but it's expensive, and to be honest, I enjoy more, the flavours I can create at home.

                    I'm going to try some of these other ideas for cooking them.

                    Look for multi-coloured tapioca as well. Of course, they don't taste any different, but they are fun!

                    AnnieG

                    1. Food Tourist Feb 1, 2008 07:57 AM

                      I found some quick-cook 5 minute dark brown bubbles at T&T (major asian grocery chain in Canada). I'm going to try it out tomorrow at a CNY party. My question is: how do I make the tea itself? Is it just ice tea with flavour added? I couldn't find anything in that supermarket except a few boxes of flavoured jello-looking powder "bubble tea" boxes with suspicious ingredient lists.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: Food Tourist
                        luckyfatima Feb 1, 2008 08:35 AM

                        the "tea" flavors in bubble teas in the tea shops IS really made of those suspicious artificially flavored powders...it is actually very hard to get those mixed right as well. You should buy some and experiment for a while to get it to the taste you want.

                      2. n
                        Neocrim Feb 29, 2008 08:36 PM

                        I just picked up some ingredients to start making my own bubble teas and have had limited success so far. This site had some interesting info on the nature of tapioca. I'm gonna give it another try, good luck!

                        http://www.bruceandclark.com/tapiocap...

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