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As the name says, the three layer tea consists of 3 aesthetic layers – the tea, the evaporated milk and gula melaka syrup – each adding a distinct taste to the drink. You may have never ordered a glass for yourself before but probably have seen a table or two order it at a mamak or traditional Chinese kopitiam. 

For fellow tea-lover who are already eagerly waiting to order a glass, rest assured you will not be tasting anything traditional. However, if you can get past the term tea, you would be able to appreciate this one of a kind drink from muzzle top until the last few slurps at the bottom of the glass. 

Three Layer Tea vs Teh ‘C’ Peng

Three Layer Tea is a variant of Teh ‘C’ Peng commonly served in East Malaysia. In some stores in East Malaysia, it will be served in 5 layers.

The teh means tea in Malay. There is no offi­cial def­i­n­i­tion for the ‘C’ but it represents a lingo for evap­o­rated milk commonly understood in almost every kopi­tiam in Malaysia.

Peng means ice in Hokkien, another lingo commonly used in Malaysian kopi­tiams when­ever you want your drink to be iced. Hence combining all 3 terms would mean iced milk tea.

Quick Three Layer Tea Recipe

Prep Time: 10 minutes | Cook Time: 15 minutes | Serving: 1 


Gula Melaka Syrup:

Ingredients (Others): 


  1. To prepare the gula melaka syrup, add gula melaka and water into a pan. Stir over medium heat until the gula melaka fully dissolves.
  2. Bring to a boil. Turn off the heat once syrup thickens. 
  3. Leave to cool. 
  4. To prepare the tea, steep the tea bags in boiling water for 5 minutes.
  5. Leave to cool.  
  6. Pour the cooled gula melaka syrup into a glass before adding the ice.
  7. Pour in evaporated milk. 
  8. Top with the cooled tea. 
  9. Serve.

How to drink Three Layer Tea?

Nope, the answer is not through a straw. Usually, we like to give our drink a thorough mix before having a long, thirst-quenching slurp. With the three layer tea, you would want to ensure you stir in moderation. Just enough for you to enjoy the mixture of evaporated milk, gula melaka and the tea while still appreciating the flavours in each layer. 

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