The British were once a powerful imperialising nation. They colonized most of Asia, Australia, North America, and some parts of Africa. By colonizing these nations, they brought with them their ideas, culture, and traditions. They left traces of their culture, infusing it with those that they had colonized. Their influences are so large that many former colonies still follow traditional English culture – afternoon tea.
But of course, with a little twist. One of these colonized nations is Malaysia. Malaysia is home to 29.72 million (as of 2013) with 14 states. It doesn’t matter which part of the country you’re from, at around 3-5 PM, you’ll be hankering for something sweet to munch on before dinner.
In this article, you’ll be able to make your own typical Malaysian teatime classics at home! Presenting to you, jemput-jemput pisang and teh tarik, the epitome of classic Malaysian teatime delicacy. It is essentially mashed banana fritters and aerated milk tea, respectively.
Simple and quick to make, these classics are perfect after a long and tiring day. These soft banana fritters melt in your mouth as you wash it down with creamy, frothy tea. Hints of nutty, gritty coconut coupled with the sweetness of the banana just hits the right spot as wafts of milky tea float into your nostrils. The sweetness of the banana compliments the milky and slightly bitter taste of the tea, making it the perfect pair. What are you waiting for? Read on for the recipe!
Jemput-Jemput Pisang (Mashed banana fritters)
You will need:
- 4 ripe bananas
- 2 tablespoons sugar OR 1 tablespoon of sweet condensed milk
- 4 – 6 tablespoons of flour
- ½ teaspoon of salt
- 2 – 3 tablespoons of desiccated coconut OR instant oats
- oil for frying
*This recipe makes roughly 15-25 pieces (depending on how much you spoon into the hot oil)
- Mash the bananas then combine with sugar/condensed milk. Set aside.
- Mix flour and salt together. Combine the dry ingredients with the wet. Make sure the batter is lumpy but not too thick.
- Then slowly combine the desiccated coconut/oats into the batter, gently mixing. (The smell of banana and coconut/oats should be water your mouth right about now.)
- Heat the oil on medium (enough to deep fry). Take tablespoons of the batter and place them into the hot oil
- Place a sheet of tissue paper or paper towel to soak up the excess oil.
- Turn the fritters around and remove them from the oil onto the paper towel once they’re golden brown on all sides.
That’s half of the adventure done! Now onto the next:
Teh Tarik (Milk tea)
You will need:
- 3 – 4 tablespoons loose leaf tea PR 3 tea bags (black tea preferably)
- evaporated milk/sweet condensed milk
*This recipe makes 1 mug
- Boil 500 mL of water
- Add the loose leaf tea
- Let it come to a boil. Reduce the heat and let the mixture continue to boil for about 10 – 12 minutes until the colour turns very dark
- Take it off the heat.
- If using loose tea, put it through the strainer
- If using tea bags, let them sit for a few seconds before removing
- To sweeten:
- Combine 2 – 3 teaspoons of evaporated milk and 1 teaspoon of sugar (add more sugar to taste)
- Put in a teaspoon of sweet condensed milk into the tea, mix then taste. It is recommended to taste the tea each time a teaspoon of condensed milk is used as it is extremely sweet. Too much condensed milk and the tea will lose its flavour, too little and the tea will be too bitter.
- The colour of the tea should resemble golden mocha once it is mixed properly with a good amount of milk and/or sugar.
If you would like to get the authentic Malaysian taste of teh tarik, try “pulling” it by pouring the tea back and forth repeatedly between two mugs. This cools it and thoroughly mixes the tea with the milk. It also produces amazing bubbly froth 😉
- You could also add spices like ginger and cardamom into the drink to give it an extra kick.
- Slightly crack 1 – 2 cardamom pods and drop them into the tea pot after it slowly starts boiling with the tea leaves or tea bags. Cardamom can be quite overpowering so it really depends on your liking.
- You can grate half an inch of ginger into the boiling tea or you could cut thin slices. You could always add extra if you’re one for spices and heat! Ginger has a long been used to relieve digestive problems like nausea, muscle pain and soreness, and also chronic indigestion.
The dusky scent of afternoon tea wafts into your nostrils. Bite into a delicately crunchy fritter and let the sweetness of the banana along with the gritty texture of coconut flood your mouth. Wash it all down with the warm tea, feeling it loosen your tense body after an exhausting day. Enjoy these classics while chilling in front of the TV watching your favourite shows or journaling on the patio. Or just in silence because the food speaks for itself.
Leave a comment and tell us how your Malaysian teatime experience went!
Last modified: April 14, 2016