This explains the process of making Hong Kong style “pantyhose tea”
The “pantyhose”, actually just a cheesecloth, does the following
- separate the 6 different tea leaves in the blend to ensure thoroughly mixed tea
- keep the tea leaves out of the final product
- do all of this as quickly as possible
There is really nothing special about the process. As a matter of fact, I can replicate it at home using what I have. The key, however, will be ingredients. You will need
- The right blend of black tea leaves. I have no idea what that is. I’d say order it from a restaurant known for milk tea. We got ours from Canada. Sorry, Canadian family secret. So I don’t know what’s in it.
- Water, duh. It’s already in your boiler, right? No, you must be in a non-Asian household.
- Milk. Preferably evaporated (that’s being used in the video) or condense milk. Half and half sort of works, but its your preference.
- Sugar. White, brown, whatever. White is the traditional method. Again, your preference.
Boil your water on high in an open pot of a decent size. Why? Because then you can clearly see your tea boiling, which will explode in your face if it bubbles. Put in your tea leaves and turn off the heat before it bubbles. While heat is off, mix it with a spoon or a hand blender if you feel hardcore. Then turn the heat back on a repeat process.
The guy in the video mixed up the tea 8 times. It’s really up to you. Some people like to use their percolator to steep their tea. If you are patient then go right ahead.
Meanwhile, in your serving cups, pour in the milk in advance. Something to do with the temperature of the tea. The video uses a 6 to 1 tea:milk ratio. Again, up to you. When you feel satisfied, pour your mixture into a French press. The French press will ensure all of the leaves are filtered out and, unlike coffee grinds, its very easy to clean. You’ll need a filter of some kind.
Pour the tea out of the French press and into the cups. Add sugar to taste (or not, if you use sweetened condensed milk).
If you like it iced there are several ways of doing it. You could put some of the tea in an ice tray. Or let the tea cool a little bit. Pour it into a sturdy tall glass (so it doesn’t crack), then put the glass in a bowl of cold water and ice. The object here is to ice the tea without diluting it.
So there, this whole mystique about making milk tea is actually pretty simple. Other than obtaining the right tea blend, anyone can make it. I don’t know why, but the Taiwanese boba tea stands around here can’t do it. Maybe its because they’re Taiwanese. Maybe they need to read this.