Hong Kong is understood for a lot of wonderful issues. There are Hong Kong martial arts movies, lavish skyscrapers and beautiful Taoist and Buddhist temples, veiled in plumes and curtains of incense and burning joss sticks. And allow us to not overlook the wonderful milk tea. However this isn’t simply any milk tea. We’re speaking about Hong Kong-style milk tea!
Hong Kong cityscape
The Historical past
The origins of this beverage return to Hong Kong’s time underneath British Imperial rule as a colony and buying and selling port. As extra British officers moved to Hong Kong, they introduced with them a lot of their customs. One specifically was afternoon tea. Nonetheless a apply right this moment in not simply Britain, however different international locations as nicely, the apply took root in Hong Kong, additionally. Typically, afternoon tea would encompass black tea with milk and sugar.
Conventional English afternoon tea
Within the 50’s and 60’s the drink grew to become widespread amongst laborers and dealing class folks, who nicknamed it “pantyhose tea” or “silk stocking tea” as a result of filter for the leaves resembling a silk stocking. As we speak, Hong Kong-style milk tea is served at Hong Kong type eating places and institutions all around the world in addition to the tea eating places and open air markets in Hong Kong. It’s so widespread and beloved on the island that it’s listed as a chunk of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Hong Kong.
Milk Tea As we speak and Why It Shines
Over time, the apply of British afternoon tea was adopted by folks all around the island. However with the variation of utilizing not common run of the mill milk, however condensed milk or evaporated milk as an alternative. What are condensed and evaporated milk? Condensed milk is the results of eradicating the water from milk. The top product is a thick, white, syrupy and candy substance that one can purchase in cans. It doesn’t have to be refrigerated except you open that may up, and it may be saved for years at a time. Those that have tried the Vietnamese cà phê đá could have seen the thick, amazingly candy milk-like liquid on the backside. Yup, that’s condensed milk!
Evaporated milk, nevertheless, is the extra genuine option to put together Hong Kong-style milk tea. Evaporated milk is just like condensed milk, in that additionally it is milk with the water eliminated. However it differs from condensed milk as a result of it doesn’t have any of the added sugar that condensed milk possesses. Evaporated milk is creamier than condensed milk, whereas condensed milk is sweetened. They’re additionally a part of the numerous causes that Hong Kong-style milk tea shines!
Hong Kong-style milk tea is served with evaporated milk. Picture: Dickson Lee
What additionally makes Hong Kong tea stand out from the gang of different varieties of tea, milk or in any other case, is the way in which it’s ready, and the elements used to arrange it. Normally 1-3 teaspoons Assam, Ceylon or one other sort of high quality leaf of black tea is used, alongside evaporated or condensed milk. The evaporated and condensed milk give the tea a particular stage of richness, sweetness and smoothness which can be exhausting to realize with milk and sugar. As for presentation, a ceramic espresso type cup, or tall cylindrical glass are often the modes of alternative for serving milk tea.
Whereas any sort of strainer or filter is permissible, the sackcloth bag, which helped the drink earn it’s nickname of “pantyhose tea”, is an actual distinctive function of this beverage. The sackcloth bag is believed to make the tea smoother. The bag additionally begins to tackle a deep brown complexion after getting used to pressure a lot tea. The identical colour as stockings!
A employee prepares pantyhose milk tea on the famed Lan Fong Yuen tea diner in Hong Kong. Picture: Reuters
The drink has an excessive amount of charisma in Hong Kong, the place folks drink 900 million glasses, cups or mugs of milk tea yearly. Milk tea has lots of the identical standing and clout as espresso does in most Western international locations. And, whereas milk tea is historically a lunch or afternoon drink, folks in Hong Kong get pleasure from it for breakfast and even dinner, too.
The fame is nicely earned for this gem of innovation and cultural change. However the synergy that’s created between the highly effective black tea and the condensed or evaporated milk is what provides this drink such an ethereal style and really feel. When it’s sizzling, it provides the elevate, aroma and flavors of black, however with out the overwhelming style that may accompany it. When the condensed milk is added, the milk is after all candy, however the staunch black tea tempers it to not be so candy you assume you’re consuming a soda. Hong Kong-style milk tea itself observes the highly effective Yin and Yang stability of harmonious opposites. The dynamic and highly effective Yin of the black tea. The otherworldly and buoyant Yang of the milk. It’s really extraordinary.
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The Totally different Kinds
What’s nice about Hong Kong-style milk tea, are the completely different kinds and variations on this previous favourite. Corresponding to iced or chilly Hong Kong-style milk tea. The 2 kinds of this chillier sort of Hong Kong-style milk tea differ in how they’re chilled. Iced is straight ahead, the tea has ice added to the liquid! However for the chilled with out ice selection, the tea is chilled in a cup or bottle within the fridge, that manner no dilution of the style!
Iced Hong Kong-style milk tea
One other very cool approach is the Yuenyeung, or the milk tea and low variation. This unbelievable invention is made out of about 3 components espresso and seven components Hong Kong-style milk tea. This model too, can be a piping sizzling beverage or served iced and chilly, good for any season or climate!
Hong Kong-style milk tea, like Hong Kong itself, is a vibrant, distinctive and dynamic drink. It differs from common black teas by its distinct sackcloth brewing methodology. This method provides the leaves a smoother style and circulation than normal brewing methods typically yield. It stands out from common milk teas as a result of utilization of condensed or evaporated milk when it served, too. The usage of the condensed and evaporated milk makes the consistency creamier. This drink is really a unprecedented instance of Hong Kong tea mastery. So, in case you are ever in Hong Kong, be sure that to go pay your respects to the statue of Bruce Lee, want for luck at a Buddhist or Taoist temple or shrine, and positively, order up a cup of Hong Kong-style milk tea!
Hong Kong-style milk tea served sizzling
Do that recipe and make that wealthy and creamy Hong Kong-style milk tea proper at your private home with Qi Aerista IoTea Brewer!
- “Hong Kong-Style Milk Tea.” Wikipedia, Wikimedia Basis, 19 Apr. 2019, familycuisine.web/wiki/Hong_Kong-style_milk_tea.
- Pang, Kevin. “Cracking the Code to Hong Kong Milk Tea.” The Takeout, The Takeout, 13 July 2018, familycuisine.web/cracking-the-code-to-hong-kong-milk-tea-1798258450.