A novice’s try at teh tarik

When I went to the Indonesian class dinner, Kami told me he’d take care of everything and there was nothing to bring… But I couldn’t go to his house for the first time empty-handed! So I brought the materials and equipment to make Malaysian teh tarik.

I have my mother to thank for getting me the tea (one kilo worth!), cans and filters over the summer. Here’s the cast of characters (sans sweetened condensed milk). Two cans with handles (I don’t use the lids), a traditional coffee/tea filter (essentially a cloth net that fits in one of the cans), looseleaf tea, and some evaporated milk.

I’m not sure what distinguishes teh tarik leaves specifically from other black teas — my mom suspects it’s just the stuff that Malaysia grew that is not suitable for export (hence the name “tea dust” on the container) — so the coarse and strong tea is tempered by the pouring motion and the addition of sweet milk. Regardless, it’s delicious!

I can’t promise any of the tomfoolery featured in my previous teh tarik post, but here are photos of my friend Jeff and I trying our hand at teh tarik. This was no roadside stall — I was very worried about spilling all over Kami’s pristine kitchen! Recipe follows the pictures 🙂

Malaysian Teh Tarik

Makes one mug of tea


  • Teh tarik leaves (any black tea can do)
  • Sweetened condensed milk
  • Evaporated milk
  • Boiling water


  • Steep tea for several minutes in hot water, making a nice, thick tea. Traditionally this is made with a sieve/filter that looks like a small cotton net. If you go to a restaurant/kopi tiam (coffee shop), they’ll probably just reuse the tea leaves from person to person.
  • Add in milks to taste. I use a mix of evaporated and condensed to reduce the amount of sugar in the drink, I believe most teh tariks use just sweetened condensed milk.
  • Pour tea from canister to canister in order to cool, mix, and froth.
  • Pour into a mug and enjoy!

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