In honor of the roses we all want to get on Valentine’s Day this week, I’m making a copycat version of the Lebanese Rose Milk Tea from Labobatory, a boba tea shop that I always visit when I’m in San Gabriel. Mine doesn’t contain boba, but that’s better for me anyway, as those starchy tapioca balls are bad news for my waistline.
I love copycat recipes because every time I make one of these, I think, “I’m saving five dollars!” Not to mention, a long drive out to San Gabriel.
All you need is Zhena’s Gypsy Rose Organic Black Tea (available at Whole Foods or online), rose water, ice, and a non-dairy creamer such as Coffeemate. The rose water is really the key — it’s what gives Labobatory’s rose milk tea that Middle Eastern flavor. You can find it at Persian or Indian grocery stores.
Labobatory uses non-dairy creamer, but you can substitute almond milk or coconut milk instead. You can also add sugar or another sweetener if you wish.
DAIRY-FREE LEBANESE ROSE MILK TEA
1 cup boiling water
1 tea bag of Zhena’s Gypsy Rose Organic Black Tea
1/2 teaspoon rose water
1 cup ice
non-dairy creamer, to taste
Steep the tea bag in boiling water for 5 minutes. Remove the tea bag, and let the tea cool for 20 to 30 minutes. If you like your tea strong, do this step a few hours before you plan to drink it, then refrigerate it (otherwise the warm tea will melt some of the ice and dilute your drink).
Add rose water to the tea and stir to combine. Fill a glass with the ice. Pour the tea over the ice, and add non-dairy creamer to taste. Stir and enjoy. Makes one serving.