Bubble Tea: what is it and where did it come from?

Bubble Tea or Boba Tea originated in Taiwan in the 1980s when a tea stand owner started adding flavourings to her tea. But it was Liu Han-Chieh who introduced Taiwan to tapioca pearls in 1983. The pearls could be added to any drink, whether it was green tea or black tea, but they were most commonly served in cold infusion milky tea (also called 'pearl milk tea'). Unlike typical tea fruit, the tapioca pearls (Boba) closely resembled bubbles leading to the name, Bubble Tea.

Being a multicultural country, Australia has always been lucky enough to see elements of food and drink from around the world. With a fairly significant Asian population, the cuisine has followed and we were also lucky enough to be introduced to a world of delicious Asian beverages. The most notable to emerge is the famous “Bubble Tea” or “Boba Tea”. To put it simply, Bubble Tea is a milky drink (mostly infused with some kind of tea) which has small chewy balls called “Boba” at the bottom of the drink.

These days bubble tea is commonly found in tea shops and specialty stores, finding more and more fans around the world.

Types of Bubble Tea

There are no hard and fast rules when it comes to bubble teas. You can let your creativity run wild. But we can divide it into three major types:

Milk Bubble Tea:

This is the most popular type of Bubble tea out there. It basically just requires the tea of your choosing and milk or almond milk. Just add Boba and ice and it is done!

Fruit Bubble Tea:

Favoured with the younger crowd, Fruit Bubble tea just has your favourite fruit or fruits (fresh, frozen or pureed) blended with milk or almond milk, honey and ice. Pour it over Boba of your choice and you are in fruity heaven! Fruit Bubble Tea is our personal favourite, those all natural flavours of Pitaya, Mangoes, Pineapple, Raspberries and Strawberries add that sweet note to this already delicious drink. The secret to these amazing flavours is the quality of the fruit being used, that is why we are passionate about supplying only the best produce. Nothing better a delicious fruity topping on your bubble tea. To see the full range of berries and juices we sell for bubble tea download this PDF. (will be hyperlinked to download final PDF).

Plain Bubble Tea:

For the iced tea fans and those watching the weight, Plain Bubble tea is the desired drink. If you haven’t guessed it by now, it’s made up of tea or iced tea, boba and might we suggest a lemon slice. Classic summer drink!

Types of Boba

When there are so many types of teas, why should Boba be boring! Luckily, you can find many varieties of Boba:

Tapioca Balls (clear boba):

Your standard boba pearls are made of Cassava root, a starchy tuber related to yam, which is converted into Tapioca starch/flour. Tapioca starch is then compressed into small balls to make tapioca pearls or boba. Clear traditional bobas can be dyed into a variety of fun, different colours. Chewy in texture and infused with brown sugar for a caramel taste, Tapioca pearls can be cooked with or coated in any flavoured syrup to bring variety to its flavour. The possibilities are endless! Black bobas is the most popular colour of choice for most people for its ability to stand out against the milky hue of various drinks.

Popping Boba:

Popping Boba is made from a seaweed extract with fruit juice flavouring inside that instantly POPS in your mouth once bitten into! Yum! It has gained large popularity especially as a topping for frozen yogurt and is pleasantly sweet. With a wide variety of flavours such as Lychee, Strawberry and Mango, there is much more room for customization and flavour pairings. Unlike tapioca boba, there is no cooking involved and goes well with colder drinks and frozen smoothies.

Fruit Jellies:

Jellies are chewy fruit squares usually made from various vegetarian sources like tapioca, fruit pulp and coconut water and the firm texture adds an interesting dimension to your bubble tea.

Grass Jellies:

Similar to fruit jellies, grass jelly is often in cube shapes, and is made by boiling the stalks and leaves of the Platostoma palustre plant, which is a member of the mint family.

Bubble Tea coming soon to Berry Man...

Craving Bubble Tea? Keep an eye out for recipes and exciting news on our website. Meanwhile, make delicious fruit smoothies with our wide selection of quality frozen fruits and vegetables.

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