Tapioca bubbles and vegan cake / Burbujas de tapioca y pastel vegano

La versión en español está después de la versión en inglés.

When I spent last Saturday with my cousins, we gorged ourselves at 2nd Avenue Deli, filled up shopping bags at Economy Candy, and bought two boxes of pastries at Erin McKenna’s Bakery…

SIDE NOTE: Erin McKenna’s Bakery products are gluten-free, vegan, and Kosher. It didn’t sound all that enticing to me. But I had a slice of chocolate-chocolate cake that was actually quite good.

BACK TO MY STORY: After all that, we went for a walk on Union Square to stroll Greenmarket Saturday. Of course, we needed something to give us strength for the 3-minute walk back to Carly’s apartment. Bubble Tea was suggested. There are bubble tea cafés all over New York and we even have some in Málaga. At last, I would find out what it was.

Carly and Brooke explained that the beverages are offered in a variety of ways, but they all include tapioca bubbles. Now doesn’t that sound simply scrumptious? I’ve had tapioca pudding. Once. Still, I was game.

Ellen suggested brown sugar milk tea. It was delicious. Even the tapioca bubbles were good. But it was so strange to suck the tea through a very fat straw and end up with little bubbles of tapioca to chew. I think it was Evie who asked if anyone ever chokes on the tapioca. A moment or two later, Carly hacked just a bit and admitted she had sucked a bubble right down her throat.

I’m glad I tried it. It certainly makes the tea last a lot longer. Next time I have bubble tea, I think I’ll take mine without bubbles.


Cuando pasé el sábado pasado con mis primos, nos atiborramos en 2nd Avenue Deli, llenamos bolsas de compras en Economy Candy y compramos dos cajas de pasteles en Erin McKenna’s Bakery…

NOTA AL MARGEN: Los productos de Erin McKenna Bakery no contienen gluten, vegano y kosher. No sonaba tan tentador para mí. Pero comí un trozo de pastel de chocolate y chocolate que en realidad estaba bastante bueno.

VOLVER A MI HISTORIA: Después de todo eso, salimos a caminar por Union Square para pasear por Greenmarket el sábado. Por supuesto, necesitábamos algo que nos diera fuerzas para la caminata de 3 minutos de regreso al apartamento de Carly. Se sugirió Bubble Tea. Hay bubble tea cafés por todo Nueva York e incluso tenemos algunos en Málaga. Por fin, averiguaría qué era.

Carly y Brooke explicaron que las bebidas se ofrecen en una variedad de formas, pero todas incluyen burbujas de tapioca. ¿No suena simplemente delicioso? He comido budín de tapioca. Una vez. Aún así, estaba dispuesto.

Ellen sugirió té con leche y azúcar moreno. Estaba delicioso. Incluso las burbujas de tapioca estaban buenas. Pero fue tan extraño chupar el té con una pajilla muy gorda y terminar con pequeñas burbujas de tapioca para masticar. Creo que fue Evie quien preguntó si alguien alguna vez se atragantó con la tapioca. Un momento o dos más tarde, Carly tosió un poco y admitió que había succionado una burbuja hasta su garganta.

Me alegro de haberlo probado. Ciertamente hace que el té dure mucho más. La próxima vez que tome té de burbujas, creo que tomaré el mío sin burbujas.

• Erin McKenna’s Bakery , 248 Broome Street on the Lower East Side.
• Pastelería de Erin McKenna’s, 248 Broome Street en el Lower East Side (el barrio que se llama la parte baja el este).
• Union Square (Allan far right). The adornment on the building is a public artwork called Metronome (click here).
• Union Square (Allan extremo derecho). El adorno del edificio es una obra de arte pública llamada Metronome (haz clic aquí).
• The BEST family EVER (including Dylan). (And happy birthday to Carly, with the naturally blue hair, who just turned 22.)
• La MEJOR familia de TODAS (incluido a Dylan). (Y feliz cumpleaños a Carly, con el cabello naturalmente azul, que acaba de cumplir 22 años).
• Brooke (with the naturally dark magenta hair).
• Brooke (con el cabello naturalmente magenta oscuro).
• I told Ellen and Evie to present the bubble tea.
• Les dije a Ellen y Evie que presentaran el té de burbujas.
• Then I told Evie to look at me, and not the tea.
• Entonces le dije a Evie que me mirara a mí, y no al té.
• Brown sugar milk tea with tapioca bubbles.
• Té con leche de azúcar moreno con burbujas de tapioca.

Author: Moving with Mitchell

From Brooklyn, New York; to North Massapequa; back to Brooklyn; Brockport, New York; back to Brooklyn... To Boston, Massachusetts, where I met Jerry... To Marina del Rey, California; Washington, DC; New Haven and Guilford, Connecticut; San Diego, San Francisco, Palm Springs, and Santa Barbara, California; Las Vegas, Nevada; Irvine, California; Sevilla, Spain. And Fuengirola, Málaga..

40 thoughts on “Tapioca bubbles and vegan cake / Burbujas de tapioca y pastel vegano”

  1. So, THAT is what Bubble Tea is!??! HA! I have never known. Hard to imagine getting too excited about it.
    Thanks for the info on piso & planta baja the other day! That issue of using piso to refer just to the apartment itself, is a new one for me! That’s why I come to the source!

    1. Judy C:
      It surprises me that Bubble Tea is such a huge hit. As I said, great tea, but not the combination. Piso is used much more often than apartamento, at least down here. It can be confusing. We live in Piso Tercero A on Piso Tercero.

  2. So that’s what Bubble Tea is all about. I always liked tapioca……..hmmm.
    What a beautiful family. I think you all were enjoying yourselves.

    1. Jim:
      It was interesting. I never did get past the sip and chew process. Oh, that family. If all the world were like them…

  3. We love bubble tea – taro flavor and hopefully icy so some of the tapioca is frozen to the bite!

    1. sillygirl:
      Taro flavor sounds interesting. I was surprised I enjoyed the bubbles but I couldn’t get used to drinking and chewing. On or the other!

  4. I think I know someone who will take double bubbles, maybe triple, does not sound like my thing.

      1. wickedhamster:
        Whoever “that” is, as I told David, he can have my bubbles.

      1. Research at leading hospitals and major universities has shown that bubbles are good for you. I read it on the internet at bubblesaregoodforyou.com/

      2. wickedhamster:
        You’re right. I just read it on goop, so it has to be true.

    1. wickedhamster:
      Yes, I did. In Photoshop. Thanks! The sun was in the wrong direction at the time, so the original photo was washed out and blah.

  5. I love tapioca pudding, but haven’t had it in ages. I did have bubble tea more than 10 years ago when we lived in Minnesota. It was OK and I can see finding a flavor that you really like and getting stuck on it. Your family look like great fun! Wonderful use of color-popping in your first photo – a great way to make the pastels stand out without bashing us over the head with super-saturated colors.

    1. Wilma:
      The light was wrong at the time of the bakery photo and it washed out and looked uninteresting. So I had some fun in PhotoShop. Thansks. I didn’t have tapioca pudding until I met SG. I didn’t like it. I was surprised to like the taste and texture of bubble tapioca, but couldn’t get used having to chew after I drank.

  6. So glad you had time with your lovely family in NYC. Your talk of Union Square reminds me of the days I used to travel up to NYC for business meetings. We had an office near 8th and Broadway in the 1990s. As for tea, I like my mine minus bubbles. My mother used to make tapioca pudding quite frequently in the 1950/60s, but I’ve never tried to make it. Preferred her rice pudding with warm milk, cinnamon and allspice.

    1. Mary:
      I didn’t have tapioca pudding until I met SG. I didn’t like it. I’m usually not a fan of rice pudding, although I have had a couple I’ve liked. But once, the chef at Mesón Salvador made way too much rice pudding, so decided to make a rice pudding cake with the extra. It was out of this world. I recently told him he needs to screw up the rice pudding quantity again. Wandering the streets of NYC brings back so many fun memories for me.

  7. Tapioca, blergh! You might just as well take a straw to the pond during mating season and suck up a few frogs’ eggs! Hard pass here, Scoot. On a positive note, that is one handsome family right there.

    1. Deedles:
      I agree with you about tapioca, but the bubbles weren’t unpleasant tasting. Still, your description of taking a straw to the pond and sucking up frog’s eggs describes the sensation perfectly. You’re right about that family. And kind, funny, intelligent, generous, loving, creative, honest, and joyful too! I am so lucky to have them in my life.

      1. Scoot, it’s the texture not so much the taste that I can’t stand! I’m a pudding lover from way back, but tapioca urp!

      2. Deedles:
        I honestly don’t remember what it was I didn’t like about tapioca pudding. Maybe it WAS the texture.

  8. I haven’t had tapioca since school dinners, and I remember it being referred to as “frogspawn”. As I recall, I didn’t like it, and have successfully avoided it ever since! Bubble tea is a fad over here, too, for some incomprehensible reason. You can keep it. I’ll stick to PG Tips. Jx

    1. Jon:
      To be honest, I don’t really understand the “coolness” of bubble tea. The tea itself was delicious.

  9. You’re having so much fun! I’m happy for you (and yours).
    I wonder, too, if there are more kosher food products than non-kosher in NY. It’s “the Jewish state,” after all.
    Great touch with the colors and black-white of first photo.
    Keep enjoying, Mitchell. L’Chaim!

    1. Robyn:
      Have been back to life in Spain for more than a week now, but still more stories and photos to share. It was a great trip. I did see someone looking for the “OU” on a package in the candy shop, and gleefully finding it.

    1. Claudia:
      I don’t like tapioca pudding. I did like the tea. The tapioca bubbles were a novely at first, but soon got to be work. Do I sip, swallow, or chew?

  10. I like the filter you used for the first photo so that everything is black & white, except for the bakery and its sidewalk sign! I had bubble tea once a few years ago when it became all the rage and was not terribly impressed. Have never bothered to have it again. Those little tapioca pearls are creepy, in my opinion, and really, add nothing to the drink.

    1. Debra:
      Thanks re the photo. That was me and PhotoShop to improve what a found to be a washed out and uninteresting photo. I agree that the tapioca pearls add nothing to the drink — except confusion. Strange to me that it has become so popular. By the way, Pearl Tea has an elegant ring.

  11. It’s so good to see Union Square again! That “Metronome” piece has been there for ages. I think steam used to come out of it, if I’m not mistaken. (Maybe it still does.)

    I love bubble tea. I first had it off Canal Street in Chinatown. I usually get the taro flavor, if it’s available. Come to think of it, I haven’t had bubble tea in ages, though. Time to go out and get some!

    1. Steve:
      Yes, smoke of some sort used to come out of that art. Not anymore.

      So, you like chewable tea. Delicious, but one was enough for me.

    1. Violet’s Vegan Comics:
      It was actually tasty. I just had a hard time adjusting to drinking and chewing. Thanks for stopping and saying “hi.”

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