Summer Time Bubble Tea
Translucent pearl tapioca creates the “bubbles’, making this a fun drink for kids and adults alike. Brew 3 black tea bags in 1 2/3 cups boiling water for 5 minutes. Remove tea bags; let cool. Meanwhile, bring 6 cups water to a boil in large saucepan. Add ¼ cup large pearl tapioca (not Minute or instant tapioca) to boiling water. Boil 1 minute. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover and simmer 20 minutes. Remove from heat and let stand, covered, for 10 minutes, or until tapioca is translucent. While tapioca rests, place large bowl of ice water beside stove. Using a slotted spoon, transfer tapioca to ice water to stop it from cooking further. Drain tapioca in sieve. Place 1 cup crushed ice (see Tip), cooled tea and 1/3 cup low-fat 1% milk (or soy, almond or rice milk) in cocktail shaker or large jar with tight-fitting lid. Sweeten with 1 1/2 tsp sugar, if desired. Shake until frothy and blended. Place about ¼ cup cooked tapioca in each of 3 glasses. Pour tea mixture over tapioca and serve with fat straws. Yield: 3 (1-cup) servings. Per serving: 58 calories without sugar; 66 calories with optional sugar.
Variation: Fruity Bubble Tea. Use green or black tea bags. Substitute 1/3 cup unsweetened fruit juice, such as orange, mango or peach, for milk. No need for sweetener. 58 calories with orange juice.
Tip: To crush ice, use ice crush function of your blender or place ice cubes in zip-close plastic food bag. Cover with kitchen towel and smash ice with rolling pin or bottom of saucepan.