Hokkaido milk tea is a deliciously creamy, rich drink popular worldwide. This Japanese drink has lots of variations, including boba and oolong.
Below we have more information on the drink, including its taste, ingredients, tips, and a recipe you’ll be dying to try. We’ve gathered all the information you need on this delectable drink through much research.
What is it?
Hokkaido milk tea is tea made with milk from the Japanese prefecture Hokkaido. Hokkaido is rich in agriculture and dairy production, making for exceptional milk to be put in tea.
In Japan, this is a type of royal milk tea. This Asian drink is bold and creamy. It has both rich and sweet flavours that have earthy and nutty tones. Along with its tea and milk base, many cooks add a sweetener to this Japanese drink to add another dimension of flavour. You can enjoy this luscious drink on its own or with one of its many twists.
Hokkaido milk tea is earthy and sweet, but its authentic flavours depend on specific tea and sweetener ingredients. Various black tea varieties will change the flavour profile, and different sweeteners will taste different.
Adding boba will also change the taste, making the drink fruity. But, no matter what you put in this rich Japanese beverage, it’ll be strong, creamy, and delicious.
One cup of this Japanese beverage has about 280 calories. Adding one serving of boba will increase the calorie count by 100.
Hokkaido Milk Tea Vs Milk Tea
What is the difference between the two beverages? Milk tea is a drink that has regular milk, and Hokkaido milk tea is made with milk from the region.
Many versions of this beverage use creamer or a non-dairy milk alternative. For example, Thai milk tea uses a combination of condensed and evaporated milk.
Another popular kind, Okinawa milk tea, is a beverage that originated in Okinawa, Japan. Many people confuse Royal and Okinawa milk teas, but they are two different drinks.
The Okinawa version is served cool and made with kokuto, brown sugar from Okinawa, south region of Japan. Meanwhile, you will find that its Northern counterpart drink is usually served warm and uses milk from Hokkaido.
The ingredients are what make this Japanese drink so unique. You must make this beverage with black tea, fresh milk from the region, and a sweetener. You can choose which particular tea and sweetener to use. Here are the main Hokkaido milk tea ingredients:
Any black tea will suffice for this recipe, but we suggest Assam. Darjeeling and Earl Gray will work well, too. Choose whatever you like best, as long as it’s black tea.
Your tea will need a sweetener, and ones bought from a supermarket or speciality shop will do. The most commonly used sweeteners in Hokkaido milk tea are caramel, honey, and brown sugar.
Caramel will make your tea taste very rich, while brown sugar will make it taste toffee-like. Honey will change the flavour of your tea depending on its source. It could be fruity, earthy, nutty, or smoky.
The star ingredient in this favourite Asian drink is, of course, creamy full-fat milk from the north of Japan. Just as champagne must come from France, this Asian drink cannot indeed bear the moniker unless it is made using milk from Japan’s northern region.
For an authentic cup, use fresh Hokkaido milk. You can use powder for an instant version, but the taste isn’t quite the same. Using milk from the region instead of Hokkaido milk tea powder makes for a fresher, creamier cup of tea. This recipe uses fresh milk instead of powder.
With Oolong Tea
Some people prefer Hokkaido milk tea to be made with oolong rather than black tea, as oolong’s floral and fruity. Hokkaido Oolong milk tea is straightforward to make. You brew tea with oolong tea leaves instead of black tea leaves and add fresh milk from the region.
Other people enjoy this Northern Japanese beverage with tapioca pearls. To add boba, you first cook the pearls in boiling water until they float or desired softness is reached. Then, add them to the tea-milk mixture at the end, add ice cubes, and enjoy this light, refreshing drink.
To make the best Hokkaido milk tea, use high-quality ingredients. Buy fresh milk, and avoid using powdered milk if you can.
Use local ingredients, too. Buy tea grown locally, as it will be fresher than tea shipped from another place in the world. If you use honey as your sweetener, buy it locally, too. Local honey is better for your health, and it’ll taste much better in your tea.
Use good freshwater to steep your tea. If the water tastes good, plain, your tea will taste good. Avoid using low-quality tap water, as this can ruin your tea.
Measure your tea leaves correctly. More tea leaves result in a stronger brew and less in a weaker one. Black tea is already solid, especially Assam, and using too much tea can alter the flavour of your Hokkaido milk tea.
Pay attention to the temperature of the water. Note that oolong tea steeps at a slightly lower temperature than black tea. If you choose that variation, the water does not need to boil to steep the tea leaves thoroughly.
Hokkaido milk tea is divine on its own, but you can enjoy it as part of a tasty snack, as well. Pour it in your favourite teacup, and pair it with a traditional Japanese dessert, like milk bread. Otherwise, you’ll also love it with pound cake or with a pastry like a scone or a croissant.
Hokkaido Milk Tea Recipe
- 2 teaspoon black tea of your choice
- ½ cup fresh Hokkaido milk
- Caramel, honey, or brown sugar
- Steep 2 teaspoon of black tea in 1 cup of boiling water for 10 to 12 minutes.
- Stir in ½ cup of fresh milk from Hokkaido.
- Simmer the mixture for 1 to 3 minutes.
- Add sweetener of choice to taste.
Calories have been calculated using an online calculator. Nutritional information offered on Honest Food Talks is for general information purposes and are only rough estimations.
If you’re wondering how Japanese home cooks prepare this beverage, check out this elegant video recipe by Lavender’s Tea Channel. Moreover, they included some tips and tricks on preparing this royal drink perfectly at home!
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Used to love drinking this in Tokyo so much! Thanks for the recipe!