Have you ever sat down with a warm cup of jasmine green tea on a rainy evening and thought, “If only there were something I could do to make this drink less wholesome…”?
We would like to share a general method of turning a drink into pond scum, which works especially well with green tea but can also be used with tea-colored cocktails.
First, brew a cup of green tea. We used jasmine green tea here because its delicate, floral bouquet contrasts delightfully with the idea of brackish pond scum.
Add about a quarter of a teaspoon of a powder containing chlorella or spirulina, which is available at health food stores. We used Kyo-Green, which contains chlorella, kelp and other healthy-sounding ingredients.
Green tea is especially good at masking the seaweed flavor of the powder, but be careful not to add too much. Spirulina will create a much more scummy effect (it is, after all, algae), but the taste might overpower the delicate scent of jasmine.
Next, carefully add about a teaspoon of chia seeds.
When eaten dry, chia seeds are crunchy, but when added to a liquid, a gel-like coating forms around the seeds. Be careful not to disturb the layer of seeds as it floats on the tea, or else the individual seeds will not stick together as a scum.
Wait about five or ten minutes for the gel to form and then carefully break up the floating mass into separate pieces. They look almost like the eggs of some small swamp-dwelling creature!
The chia seeds do not really add any flavor to this drink. They feel very much like small tapioca balls when drunk, much like bubble tea!