What is Okinawa Milk Tea?
Okinawa milk tea is milk tea from the Okinawa region of Japan. It is a delicious mix of black tea, milk, and sweetener and it can be served hot, over ice or you can drink it with tapioca pearls. Okinawa Milk Tea has a caramel flavor with a strong black tea mixed in.
The sweetener consists of a special brown sugar that comes from Okinawa, which is called kokuto. Its flavor comes via the way it’s made. Regular brown sugar you find in the U.S. is made of refined white sugar and molasses, while kokuto is made via cooking down the juice from sugarcane plants. This type of brown sugar is very flavorful and has a lot of vitamins too.
If you are interested in making your own Okinawa milk tea, you can buy this kokuto at a food specialty shop or use molasses or regular brown sugar. It is not hard to make and it is great tasting as well as good for you if made with the traditional kokuto brown sugar.
Experts recommend you make Okinawa milk tea using strong black tea varieties such as Irish Breakfast, English Breakfast or Assam black tea. For the milk, you should choose whole milk if you want to get the rich creamy kind of taste you’d find in a café.
Here’s some simple directions for making Okinawa milk tea:
1. Measure the tea leaves and use about a teaspoon of them for each 6 ounces of water. It is best to brew your tea leaves in a tea infuser or teapot. Then your tea leave are going to expand as they steep, and this makes the tea taste better.
2. Heat the water until it boils, which is 212 degrees Fahrenheit or 100 degrees Celsius. It can be heated in a pot, a tea kettle on the stove or in an electric teapot.
3. Infuse the tea leave via pouring the boiled water over the tea leaves and leaving these for between 3-5 minutes.
4. Sweeten the tea using the conventional kokuto brown sugar, or you can substitute toasted sugar, regular brown sugar or molasses.
5. Add your milk. If you want, you can froth your milk and add that to your tea. Use whole milk for best results, but other kinds can be substituted if desired.
6. You can drink this tea cold if desired, via refrigerating it or pouring it over some ice. Then, if desired, you can also add in some tapioca pearls.
What is the Caffeine Content of Okinawa Milk Tea?
The amount of caffeine in this tea depends on the type of black tea used to make it. Most black teas contain about half the caffeine as is in a typical cup of coffee. However, the caffeine amount varies dependent on things besides the type of black tea.
For instance, some folks like to make this tea using broken tea leaves, which makes it stronger in flavor. Additionally, the hotter your water, the more caffeine will be in a cup of Okinawa Milk Tea, as well as the timeframe it is steeped. The longer it steeps, the more caffeine is in the tea.
Healthy Benefits of Okinawa Milk Tea
There are several benefits to drinking Okinawa Milk Tea. One of the best is it can boost your energy and help you to lose weight. This is due to the polyphenols in it, which lower the chances your body will store extra sugar as body fat. Research studies showed if you drink Okinawa tea regularly, it can increase the rate your body burns fat by 40 percent and that those who drink it are three times more likely to be able to lose weight.
Another benefit is it can help improve skin problems. It is known to help make a person’s skin glow and help them to look younger if they drink Okinawa Milk Tea regularly. It also may help enhance your immune system via saponins that are in it. These saponins help your body increase endurance along with helping to improve your heart’s ability to pump blood, plus making your muscles stronger.
Another benefit is it was shown to stimulate a person’s neurological system as it aids in raising the levels of nitric oxide in your body. It helps relax the walls of your arteries, especially the ones in your heart. It also can help you keep your blood pressure balanced and lower if you suffer from hypertension.
Okinawa Milk Tea has also been seen to help people maintain a proper blood sugar level, therefore if helps in people who have diabetes type 2.
However, there is also a few precautions for some folks if they are thinking about trying Okinawa Milk Tea. For example, pregnant women, young kids, and anyone with a dairy allergy should avoid it.
Pregnant women should not drink it due to the caffeine content, as caffeine is known to sometimes induce a miscarriage or cause the baby to be low birth weight. As for kids, this precaution is mostly if you add the tapioca pearls, as these can cause choking with young children.
If concerned, speak with your doctor prior to trying this kind of tea.
Okinawa Milk Tea is a very unique and tasty drink that many folks love to try when they come to Japan, and you can even make it at home in your own kitchen. It’s great to drink for your health too since it contains a high amount of antioxidants, as well as magnesium.
So, if you are a tea connoisseur and want to try something delicious no matter if it is served hot or cold, that also can bring you health benefits, then why not get yourself a nice cup of yummy Okinawa Milk Tea today.