Make Your Own Bubble Tea, Because Why Not?
It’s always more fun to DIY. Every week on Food52, we’ll spare you a trip to the grocery store and show you how to make small batches of great foods at home.
Let me tell you about my relationship with textures: Since the day I could eat, the texture of a food has, more often than not, come first as a priority for what I feel like eating in that exact moment. Texture first, flavor second.
I define my cravings as doughy or crispy, not salty or sweet. And I’d eat just about anything — even durian — if it morphed into the texture of a nice fluffy loaf of bread. My hierarchy of textures starts at the top with doughy: a crustless piece of challah, a thick potsticker wrapper (hold the filling), a pork bun. Then comes crispy: Cheez-Its, the coating of a well-fried mozzarella stick, a handful of potato chips. Way at the bottom of this list we have slimy, rubbery, and whatever mushrooms are.
It doesn’t make sense that I should like bubble tea, and for the longest time, I didn’t. I’d sit in Chinatown and watch my sister slurping up the chewy black balls as I’d sip on my tapioca-less drink with the fat straw that I used to disguise my dislike. Eventually I just felt like a fake, drinking my plain jane drink with a super special straw, so I sucked it up (no pun…) and tried some boba.
More: Looking for another way to make tea exciting again? Try classic Southern sweet tea.
I realized those things don’t have an ounce of flavor, but I like the novelty, and the texture has grown on me. They’re not slimy, and the textural variety is a nice change of pace from your typical smoothie or tea.