I find myself wishing for an ice-cold “teh-o-ais-limau” during the hot Sydney summers, but this ultra simple drink can really only be found in Asian restaurants. I wonder why? (Yes, I know I can get bottled iced-tea but that’s not the same at all).
It is so simple to make because it literally contains all the ingredients in its name – black/plain tea (teh-o), ice (ais) and lime (limau). At the restaurants/cafes/stalls, this drink is made by mixing sugar syrup into black tea, then ice is added and finally a squeeze of lime. The lime is popped into the tea for “garnish”. When making iced-tea in Australia, I use the Tahitian lime (similar to Limau Nipis), but the “proper” lime to use is Limau Kasturi (it’s green on the outside but orangey inside – I’m not sure but it may be similar to the Kalamansi lime).
Tea purists will turn away from this blog in digust now, but to make Teh-O-Ais-Limau at home, I simply steep a teabag in hot water for a while (a stronger flavour is preferable, and I used Ceylon tea), add sugar to taste, pour it over lots of ice-cubes and add a dash of lime. You could even make up a jug to store in the fridge.
Another beverage that is common throughout Malaysia is Teh-Tarik (literally “Pull Tea”). It is called “pull-tea” because the person making the tea holds two metal jugs quite a distance apart and pours the tea back and forth, “pulling” as he goes. You can watch a video here.
Teh tarik made using fresh milk
Again, it is simple to make at home, just brew a strong, sweet milky tea and pour from a jug into a cup and repeat until it froths. But there is a secret ingredient! Condensed milk. I don’t have any at home (because it is way too tempting), and I use some evaporated milk instead. The resulting bubbles are definitely more pronounced than the tea made using fresh milk.
Teh tarik made using evaporated milk
Look at them bubbles!
Malaysians take both these teas quite sweet so the phrase you need to learn when travelling through the country is: “kurang manis” (kurang=less, manis=sweet). Order away like a pro – “Teh-O-Ais-Limau, kurang manis”. ☺
Another version of “Teh-tarik” is “Teh-halia” (literally ginger tea). Ginger juice is added to the milky, sweet tea giving it an aromatic spicy edge. Very tasty!
Mr. Kitchen Hand actually likes this drink, so the scores are high this week (finally!).
The MKH Scale-O-Meter
Appearance: 4. “Looks authentic and refreshing”
Taste:3.5 . “Just missing a little sweetness”
Overall comment: Can’t wait for summer to start so I can get into one of these.
Hope you enjoyed today’s Malaysian Monday, and have a great start to the week.
We are still away visiting Nana and Pop so tomorrow’s EOWTTA (eating our way through the alphabet) will be postponed until next week. We should be back by the middle of the week, and happy hols to anyone on school holidays ☺