Super summer beverages

Short of money and cannot get the drink you have been thirsting for? Why not become a backyard barista, bubble tea wizard or juice champ in your home. We have found the best recipes and books to help you save money, learn new skills and quench your summer thirst.

How to make bubble tea

Bubble tea

Bubble tea is a Taiwanese recipe that is made by blending a tea base with milk, fruit, fruit juices and “bubbles”. The bubbles are yummy tapioca pearls that sit at the bottom of the cup. These delicious fruit or tea infusions can be served either piping hot or ice cold. It is a delicious and ever-so-quirky drink and snack. 

While you can buy bubble tea kits, here is an easy recipe that only needs a few ingredients:

  • 6–8 bags of black tea 
  • 4 cups hot water
  • 3/4 cup quick-cooking tapioca pearls
  • milk to serve 
  • simple sugar syrup to serve (or your choice of sweetener)

For the simple sugar syrup:

  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 cup sugar (brown or granulated or swap it out for honey)


  • Steep the tea with four cups of freshly boiled water. Let the tea sit in water until it cools completely.
  • To prepare the simple sugar syrup, add the water and sugar to a saucepan and stir everything together. Heat the water until the water boils and the sugar completely dissolves. Remove the saucepan from heat and let it cool before transferring to a jar.
  • Bring approximately four cups of water to boil and add the pearls. Stir and wait for them to float to the top. Cook for another five minutes. Test a pearl to see if it has reached the desired level of softness, if not cook the pearls for another few minutes.
  • Use a slotted spoon to remove the pearls from the hot water. Rinse the pearls under cold water to stop the cooking process. Transfer the pearls to a bowl and mix with a few tablespoons of simple sugar syrup (to taste).
  • To assemble the drinks, strain the tea into a jug. Divide the cooked tapioca pearls into four large glasses. Add a few ice cubes to each glass.
  • Pour one cup of the tea into each glass. Add 1 1/2 tablespoons of milk and 1 1/2 tablespoons of simple syrup into each glass. Add more milk or simple sugar syrup to your taste.
  • If you are serving the bubble tea to guests, have a small jug of milk and the jar of simple sugar syrup ready so that each guest can adjust their drinks to their taste.
  • The drink is usually served with large Boba straws (large enough for the tapioca pearls to go through). If you do not have the straws on hand, you can use spoons to scoop out the tapioca pearls.

Old fashioned lemonade

Your grandparents and great grandparents grew up with home made lemonade and there is a reason why it is still so popular. It is super refreshing, super easy and super cheap to make.


  • 6 lemons
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 6 cups cold water
  • ice to serve


  • Juice the lemons to make one cup of juice. To make it easier, firmly roll the lemons between your hand and counter top before cutting in half and juicing.
  • In a large jug combine lemon juice, sugar and cold water.
  • Stir and adjust water to taste.
  • Chill and serve over ice.


Nothing beats a creamy, freezing cold drink on a hot summers day. Become a thickshake master with this super easy recipe. If you do not like chocolate, swap it out for malt or whatever other flavour you like. For even more summer goodness, chuck in some fresh mangoes or strawberries to make it super healthy.

  • 2 litre tub vanilla ice-cream, softened
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • drinking chocolate powder to decorate
  • 200g block dark chocolate chopped
  • 300ml tub thickened cream


  • Make a sauce by combining the chocolate and 1/2 cup of cream in a large saucepan. Stir over a low heat until melted and smooth. Remove and cool to room temperature.
  • Drizzle one tablespoon of sauce down the side of each of the four serving glasses.
  • Beat remaining cream in a small bowl with an electric mixer until soft peaks form.
  • Place ice-cream, milk and chocolate sauce into a large blender. Blend until smooth.
  • Divide mixture evenly among prepared glasses.
  • Top with whipped cream.
  • Dust with sifted drinking chocolate and serve immediately. 


Reserve these books to learn even more super summer beverages:

Extreme milkshake recipes

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