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All Posts By

Heather Haynes

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The Best Valentine’s Day Gifts for Every Tea Lover

January 26, 2022

Looking for the perfect Valentine’s Day gift? Look no further. We created a list of the best gifts (especially for the tea lover in your life) to give this Valentine’s Day! There’s nothing quite like cozying up with a warm mug in hand, whether it’s filled with a calming chamomile, caffeinated English breakfast or flavorful matcha; especially when it’s a meaningful gift. Weather you are celebrating Valentine’s Day with a partner, yourself or with your galentines, here are out top choices for this year!

Digital Electric Glass Kettle

The Chefman Electric Kettle has a digital touch display with programmable steep times and boils water faster than traditional methods. This kettle has eight presets included to make it easy to get the perfect hot water for your all teas including black, herbal, oolong, white, green, and delicate teas! Just pick your preset and the hot water boiler can make up to 6 cups.

Tea Storage Container

Nothing says I love you quite like making sure that person always has the freshest cup of tea possible. This beautiful, vacuum sealed container is the perfect gift for all tea lovers!

A Tea Subscription Box

Our tea subscription box is the perfect gift. What’s better than being able to try out new teas from around the world? Monthly tea subscription boxes are a great way to find new teas that you love. We have over 100 teas to try and a tea for everyone.

Hand painted tea kettle

This vibrant tea kettle has more than just one use so it makes the perfect gift! This Indian kettle has been handpainted by trained Pattachitra artists of Odisha. This kettle is a tribute to Odisha’s rich art and culture interpreted for the modern home décor through their artistic manifestations. This kettle is not to be used as a pot on the stove. It can be used for Home Décor, as a planter, as kitchenware, a jewelry holder and is ideal for serving!

Matcha Chocolate 

I don’t think many people would be upset with chocolate as a gift. Especially not on one of the biggest sweets days of the year! This matcha chocolate melts in your mouth and is loaded with antioxidants! As a bonus, you will be supporting a small business. It’s a win-win all around!

Gold Heart Tea Infuser

Everyone needs a tea infuser handy! This beautiful gold tea infuser filter is the perfect way to say ‘I Love You’ to the tea lover in your life. It is made with high quality food grade stainless steeled is rust free. Because of this, you will have this piece around for years and years to come.

Heart Shaped Tea Mug

These heart shaped double lined mugs are the perfect way to show your partner, friend or yourself love each morning! The double-layer glass with handle allows you to safely hold hot drinks without worrying about getting burned or slipping. This design eliminates condensation on the external glass. The insulation effect it creates keeps beverages hot or cold.

Green Tea Bath Bomb

Everyone can benefit from some extra self-care time. This green tea bath bomb infused with lavender is the perfect gift to do so! It also has all-natural epsom salt for true self-care, sore muscles and pure relaxation. It cleanses and detoxes your skin in a natural and gentle way.

A Tea Infused Sweet

Looking to make something yourself? We have a whole blog dedicated to tea-infused desserts and treats that is sure to make every tea lover smile. To add a v-day flare, add a few drops of food red food coloring to these recipes!

Which one of these would you give your Valentine? What ever you choose, being present is the best thing you can be. Even spending the morning sipping your favorite tea together can be a meaningful gift to your Valentine. If you get any of these gifts, be sure to let us know!

Happy Valentine’s Day from all of us at The Tea Kitchen!

Be sure to follow us on Instagram @theteakitchen for daily tea posts, recipes and inspo!

Tea Industry

The Tea Kitchen featured on Redfin!

January 25, 2022

Recently, Redfin asked us about our favorite tips about creative home decor tips for the New Year and we were happy to oblige. Obviously, loose leaf tea consumes our lives daily, but our passion for tea also ties in with our passion for home decor with natural scents and candles like eucalyptus, or even tea accessories that could help add to a space.

No matter if you’ve recently moved into a new home or have been in the same place for a number of years, the new year is a great time to consider re-doing your space. We are always reworking our space from florals, to candles, to pottery, there are countless creative home décor and art pieces you can bring into your home, no matter where you live.

That’s why Redfin asked us, along with other expects to share our best advice to find the right creative home décor. Check out what we had to say so you can make redesigning your home meaningful as you begin another new year…of course, you know tea was part of that and our natural outlook on things.

Switch Up Your Home’s Style! 17 Creative Home Décor and Art Tips for the New Year

Types of Tea

The Best Teas to Boost Your Immune System

January 14, 2022

Tea has been used in herbal medicine to treat minor illnesses for thousands of years. Tea is great for your immune system. It is high in antioxidants and is a great source of hydration! Many teas have antiviral and antibacterial properties that can help to prevent you from getting sick. If you’re afraid you’ve already caught a bug, tea can also help to soothe your body and ease symptoms while you recover. From ginger teas to herbal infusions that you can make at home, we’re breaking it down so that you can be ahead of the cold seasons!

Ginger Tea

Ginger is a flowering plant that originated in Southeast Asia. It’s among the healthiest spices on the planet. Ginger teas contain antimicrobial properties that can help to boost your immune system and keep you safe and healthy. It’s also been shown that ginger can help reduce stress and we all know how stress can wreak havoc on our immune system! Ginger imparts a slightly sweet, slightly spicy flavor to tea blends, and is a popular ingredient in both caffeinated and herbal teas. Some of our favorites are lemon ginger herbal tea and our ginger black.

Peppermint Tea

Peppermint is an aromatic herb in the mint family that is a cross between watermint and spearmint. It is another popular herbal tea that can be consumed on its own or as an ingredient in both caffeinated and herbal blends. Peppermint is cool, minty, and soothing – the perfect thing when you’re feeling under the weather. Studies have shown that peppermint has antimicrobial and antiviral properties that can help ward off illness. It’s also high in antioxidants along with a variety of other health benefits such as improving energy and relieving headaches.

Cinnamon Tea

Cinnamon is loaded with antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties. Antioxidants fight off oxidation caused by free radicals, which are molecules that damage your cells and contribute to diseases. Compounds found in cinnamon tea can fight off bacteria and fungi. It controls blood sugar levels and blood pressure, promotes heart health and also reduces pain caused by menstrual cramps. Adding honey to your cinnamon tea infusion can not only add flavor, but also has antioxidants and enzymes that help one heal from within. It also has antibacterial properties that ward off infections and damaging cells from the body.

Lemongrass Tea

 Lemon grass has anti-bacterial & anti-fungal properties that help you cope with cold, cough and flu and is loaded with vitamin c that strengthens immunity. Lemongrass also has antioxidant properties that kill free radicals that cause diseases in the body. Its antimicrobial functions treat oral infections and cavities. A cup of lemongrass tea can do wonders for an upset stomach, cramping, or other digestive issues. Our dragonfruit white is infused with lemongrass to create a one of a kind cup to sip on.

Green Tea

Green tea has been consumed for centuries for its beneficial properties. Green teas are rich in anti-oxidants called Polyphenols. Polyphenols are efficient infection fighters. They protect the body against potential viruses, infections and sickness. Green tea blended with Tulsi, Mulethi and Ginger help keep diseases like asthma, lung infection, cough etc at bay, while flavours like Ashwagandha and Nettle Leaves impede the growth of cancer cells in the body and stimulate the lymphatic system. The anti-oxidants of green tea help rid the body of free radicals, and make the liver healthy.

White Tea

The benefits of white tea are no secret. From chefs to medical researchers, everybody praises the sweet flavour and health benefits of this tea. Studies say that white teas are helpful in reducing risks of cancer and cardio vascular diseases. It is rich in polyphenols, tannin and flavonoids. The antioxidants work on protecting the various organs of the body, while also eliminate free radicals that can potentially damage blood cells, DNA and collagen. White tea may also provide some relief from diabetic symptoms by decreasing your plasma glucose levels and increase insulin secretion. Antibacterial properties of this tea can help fight against infections while it’s soothing effects aid in relief from insomnia, stress and fatigue. Incorporating white tea into our habitual morning rituals is a great way to reinforce your immune system and begin your day.

While tea is full of health benefits, it isn’t a replacement for professional medical treatment. You should always seek the help of a medical professional if you think you’re suffering from a serious illness. That said, tea has many benefits to help prevent you from getting sick and help you through the process when you are under the weather.

Uncategorized

The Tea Infused Skincare You Never Knew You Needed

January 10, 2022

We drink it. We use it in recipes. And now we’re adding it to our skincare routine. Tea is not only great to sip on, but has so many incredible benefits for our skin, too! It’s no wonder that all the benefits from drinking tea can also apply to putting in onto your skin. From earl grey tea to green tea to matcha and everything in between, tea is the it ingredient skin care right now.

Innisfree Green Tea Hydrating Sleeping Mask

Innisfree is a company that puts in the work to make sure that all of their products are clean and organic. That includes their Green Tea Sleep Mask. This mask is a hydration-boosting overnight mask infused with green tea that quenches skin and provides antioxidant protection while you snooze. Just remember that when using sleep masks to apply after your moisturizer.

Fresh Black Tea Firming Overnight Mask

We’re hitting you with another sleep mask (because frankly, they are powerhouses in your skincare routine). Fresh Black Tea Firming Overnight Mask is an intensely moisturizing treatment that lifts your nighttime ritual to new heights. This sleeping mask acts like a corset for your complexion, giving you a lifted, firmer look by morning. This mask is made with a mix of kombucha (black tea ferment), black tea extract, blackberry leaf extract, and lychee seed extract which is proven to inhibit damaging free radicals and helps improve the appearance of skin elasticity. 

Herbivore Jasmine Green Tea Oil Control Toner

Possibly the most well known of clean beauty brands is Herbivore Botanicals. It can be found everywhere from big retailers like Urban Outfitters to small curated shops like Follain– and for good reason. All of their products are made from food-grade ingredients because after all, you shouldn’t put something on your skin that you wouldn’t put in your body, right? Their Jasmine Green Tea Toner has the powers of antioxidant-rich green tea infused into luxurious jasmine flower water. It’s formulated to reduce oiliness, fight blemishes, and treat combination, oily, and blemish-prone complexions.

Winky Lux Matcha Sugared Lip Scrub

When it comes to skincare, we often forget about giving love to our lips! Lip care is especially important in the dry, cold winter months of the year. This Matcha Sugared Lip Scrub by Winky Lux will smooth and soften to help even the most chapped of lips. Blended with sugar, green tea extract and natural vanilla to gently exfoliate, moisturize, and recharge lips. Your lips will love you so matcha!

CREMORLAB Herb Tea Pure Calming Mask

Everyone knows that Korean beauty products are top notch and this herb tea calming sheet mask does not disappoint. Infused with aloe vera, rosewater and thermal water, this mask contains black tea and chamomile extracts. The tannins and polyphenols inside the black tea extract purify and soothe your skin whilst hydrating the dermis. There is a reason this brand has a cult following!

COOLA Classic Sport Face Sunscreen with White Tea

If there is one thing that you take away from this blogpost, please let it be that you NEED to be wearing sunscreen everyday (yes, even when you are indoors!) They state that this is a “Farm to Face” organic sunscreen with white tea that features fortified sun protection that’s unbelievably light, non-greasy, and sheer on any skin tone. This sunscreen is designed for those long, active days in the sun but light enough for everyday use. Board certified Dr. Bindu Sthalekar says, “White tea contains high amounts of anti-bacterial and anti-aging properties that help prevent wrinkles and sagging skin”. Sounds like a win win all around!

Whamisa by Glow Studio Chai Tea Eye Cream

Who knew that your daily glass of chai latte can give some extra skincare benefits? Known to increase blood circulation, chai combats puffiness and dark circles. Blended with flavanoid-rich rooibos, this chai tea eye cream by Whamisa will fill in wrinkles and curb fine lines. Formulated without any parabens, mineral oils and fragrances, you will get the best pick-me-up that you never knew you needed.

Tea has been around for thousands and thousands of years and it is no surprise that we are now adding it to our skincare routine. From hydration to clearing blemishes, tea does it all. Weather consuming orally or topically, it is sure to keep your skin glowing.

If you try out any of these products, let us know! Be sure to follow us on Instagram @theteakitchen for daily posts on all things related to tea!

Tea History & Culture

The History of Moroccan Tea

January 6, 2022

There are many different tales that people believe when it comes to the birth of tea in Morocco. Some historians believe that the British Queen Victoria personally sent over tea to the Queen of Morocco, while others believe it was introduced by the Arabs when they first arrived in Morocco. While the history of how tea arrived in Morocco has been a debated topic by historians for years, it is important to understand the culture and art of tea as it is known in Moroccan culture. The art of tea drinking has been a part of the Moroccan culture for centuries and there are many different traditions and tales about Moroccan tea culture. It holds a symbolic value in Morocco and the state has since become one of the largest tea importers in the world.

As trade increased throughout Morocco in the late 1800s, tea spread throughout the country. Tea has since become part of the Moroccan ritual and a social rite in the state. People first started drinking tea in Morocco because they were not allowed to drink alcohol. This is why Moroccan tea can sometimes be referred to as the berber of whiskey because it served as a placeholder for the alcohol they were not allowed to consume. Muslims were forbidden from consuming alcohol for religious purposes, so they looked to Moroccan tea as a logical alternative. Moroccans refer to tea is Attay. It is a sacred drink that offers a sense of welcoming and generosity to anyone passing through or visiting.

Although tea is not grown in Morocco, it is a huge part of their culture and everyday life. The most famous Moroccan tea is Moroccan Mint Tea. Moroccan Mint Tea or Maghrebi mint tea is a symbol of hospitality and generosity and is often consumed when meeting with family, friends, acquaintances, and more. It is green tea prepared with mint leaves, sugar, and sometimes other herbs. It is a tea that is meant to be prepared in front of guests and can be consumed at any time of the day. It is usually prepared on a large tray with a teapot full of hot water, green tea leaves, herbs, mint leaves, and sugar. The teapot where you will often find Moroccan mint tea is called a Sinia tea tray. Typically, they are silver and have matching silver sets to accompany them. The portions are usually served in a large pot which means you never consume just one glass. This is another example of hospitality in the Moroccan tea culture.

Moroccan tea is mixed by pouring the infusion from teapot to teapot and allowing it to cool down in the process. The secret to making the best Moroccan Mint Tea lies in the amount of ingredients you put in and the time in which the ingredients infuse together. The sweeter the tea, the more value you are as a guest to the host serving your tea. Another fact that can be associated with the importance of a guest is the height at which the host pours the tea from the teapot. The higher the teapot is, the important you are as a guest. This ritual is also scientific, as it helps in oxygenating the tea and facilitate digestion. The large portions are meant to serve as an inviting, welcoming factor. It is often prepared by a male, typically the head of the family, whereas the food is prepared by the women in the family. Sipping loudly is a symbol of Western etiquette as it shows a sign of appreciation to the host or preparer of the tea. If you find yourself in a Moroccan marketplace, vendors may offer you tea to invite you in and try to sell their product to you. Moroccan tea traditions are not only popular in Morocco, but in the surrounding North African states as well.

Some foods that are typically paired with Moroccan tea include traditional dishes such as couscous or B’sara (bean soup). The sky is the limit here but don’t be surprised to find a table laden with loads of carbohydrates. Pastries and breads make up a bulk of the typical sweets at the table when enjoying Moroccan Tea. Msemmen is a favorite snack for kids and adults alike. They’re usually offered at breakfast or in the late afternoon for snacks. They can be served sweet with honey and butter or made savory and stuffed with onions and spices. Another dish you are likely to see is a plate of Moroccan cookies better known as Ghoriba Bahla. These delicate cookies are shortbread with almonds and sesame seeds.

Brew your own serving of Moroccan Mint Tea using our Gunpowder Green Tea. Moroccan Mint Tea is easy to make and relies heavily on timing. Start by gathering the ingredients: gunpowder green tea, fresh mint leaves, sugar, and water. Gunpowder Green Tea is a Chinese-style tea that is rolled into small balls to resemble gunpowder. In Morocco, it is directly imported from China. Start by boiling your water in a kettle and adding the gunpowder green tea leaves. Cover the leaves and allow the water to steep. After straining and disregarding the leaves, add fresh mint and sugar to the pot. Allow the combination to steep for just over 5 minutes. To achieve the perfect infusion, pour the pot back and forth between two containers and then serve on a Sinia Tea set.

Moroccan tea is a sign of appreciation that should be accepted upon offering. It is a sign of hospitality that is meant to welcome guests and serve as an act of generosity and kindness. It is a long and leisurely experience that is meant to be enjoyed by all. Its cultural importance cannot be overstated. Whether you want to enjoy its role in local society or to experience Moroccan Mint Tea benefits, you’re in for a treat.

Tea Recipes

Tea Infusions: What Are They and How to Make Them

December 21, 2021

Let’s talk about infusions. You may see infusions while shopping at your local grocery store next to all of your favorite teas. But, what exactly is an infusion? And what is the difference between tea and infusion? In simple terms, tea is the drink obtained by steeping camellia sinensis (tea leaves) in water. An infusion is the generic name of the method, which involves soaking any leaves or herbs in hot water. You may be saying, well isn’t that the same thing? Well, sort of. The main difference is that infusions are not limited to just the camellia sinensis plant. Infusions can be any herbal substance that go into hot water to create the drink. For example, you can mix black tea, black licorice root, dried elder flower and peppermint leaf to create a cold busting drink during cold season. Infusions are also steeped for longer periods of time and use larger quantities of herb. Then main purpose of this is to create a drink that is higher in vitamins and minerals. For example, a cup of nettle tea has 5-10 mg. of calcium, while a cup of nettle infusion can contain up to 500 mg. of calcium!

How To Brew Your Infusion

What should you brew your infusion in? Is a tea ball good to use? Can I use my everyday tea mug? While you are able to use those, the best vessels to make your infusion in are a French press or a quart-sized mason jar. Both of these work great and give your herb blend space to move around and release all their healing compounds! Just fill your jar or French press with an adequate amount of herbs (about 1/4 cup of herbs and/or tea blend) and then cover with boiling water. Make sure to cover your container tightly.

Infusion Recipes

There is an endless amount of infusion recipes you can make. For example, you can mix chamomile, lavender and lemon bomb leaves for a good nights rest, ginger and licorice for an upset stomach, and so many more! Here are a few tea infusion recipes courtesy of Mother Earth News:

High-C Tonic Tea Recipe

Who couldn’t use more vitamin C this time of year? This is a wonderfully refreshing blend filled with vitamin-C (and great for children, too!)

Ingredients:

4 parts rose hips
3 parts hibiscus
2 parts lemongrass
1 part cinnamon chips

Instructions:

Combine all ingredients and store in an airtight container. To make a tea, prepare as an infusion.

Berry Good Tea Recipe

When you are in need of a boost during the cold and flu season, this is the perfect drink to do so!

Ingredients:

2 parts elderberries
2 parts dried hawthorn berries
2 parts lycium berries
1 part huckleberries or bilberries
1 part raspberry leaf
Honey (optional)

Instructions:

Mix together all of the ingredients. Brew as an infusion, using 1 tablespoon of the herb mixture per cup of water, and steeping for 30 to 60 minutes. Sweeten with honey if desired. Drink 1 cup daily.

Pick-Me-Up Tea Recipe

Has the clock struck 3:00 pm on a Monday and you are looking for a pick me up that isn’t a coffee? Try this recipe!

Ingredients:

2 parts hawthorn berry, leaf and/or flower
2 parts nettle
1 part ginkgo
1 part licorice
1/4 part cinnamon
1/4 part ginger

Instructions:

Prepare as an infusion, using 1 ounce of herb mixture per quart of water, and allowing it to steep for 45 minutes or longer.

Herbal infusions pack a powerful punch, and offer many medicinal benefits for your overall health. They are definitely worth adding to your tea drinking routine. Let us know if you try any of these or if you come up with one on your own!

Make sure to follow us on Instagram @theteakitchen 

Tea Recipes

Five Unusual Rubs To Add To Your Recipe

December 16, 2021

When deciding how to flavor your meat, what comes to mind? Salt, pepper, certain herbs? Well, we’re here to tell you all about something that probably doesn’t come to mind first: tea! Yes, adding tea to your rubs can add a whole new world of flavors! Tea works well as meat tenderizer because of its tannin content. Black contains most tannin amongst all tea, evident by its dark color. This makes black tea very effective and an all-natural meat tenderizer compared to other products out on the market. These five recipes will explore everything from earl grey to herbal tea. Whether you are grilling out or making a delicious dinner at home, these five rubs are sure to be a hit!

1) Tea-Rubbed Filet Mignon Steaks with Buttery Mushrooms

tea-rub-1

This recipe from Weber’s Way to Grill™ by Jamie Purviance calls for 2 Earl Grey tea bags to kick off its rub. Earl grey tea leaves mix with black peppercorns, tarragon, salt, and thyme to create a rub that turns into a paste when combined with olive oil. Coat your steaks with the paste for 15 to 30 minutes before grilling, and you’re off to the races.

2 ) Jasmine Tea Rub Ribs

tea-ribs

This recipe from The Woks of Life incorporates tea not only in a rub, but also in a mixture for brining. Begin by steeping jasmine tea in hot water with salt and sugar. Add the ribs, squeeze out the air, and store in the refrigerator for three hours. After those three hours have passed, it’s time to season the ribs even more with the rub. This rub combines jasmine tea leaves with pepper, cumin, paprika, salt, and soy sauce. After two hours in the oven, the ribs are ready to be garnished with sesame seeds and cilantro. This recipe may take a while to prepare, but it’s sure to be worth the while.

3) Iced Tea-Infused Rub

Have iced tea mix somewhere in your cabinet? Here’s a general iced tea-based rub recipe from Woman’s Day to pair with your favorite meat, potatoes, or seafood any time of the year. The rub combines iced tea mix with ginger, cinnamon, salt, cloves, and pepper. Tip: make this rub in bulk and store it in an airtight container for up to 3 months for a quick and delicious way to season your meals.

4) Smoked-Tea Rubbed Steak with Mango-Ginger Salsa

smoked-tea-rub

This recipe from Oui Chef on Food52 blends a unique array of flavors with its rub and accompanying salsa. The rub blends Lapsang Souchong tea leaves with salt, red pepper flakes, chipotle chili powder, garlic powder, cayenne pepper, and dried chives. Food52 writes, “The Asian flavors in the tea and the piquant Latin American/Mexican spices combine to create a crust on the flank steak that is both succulent and super-spicy.” Sounds good to us!

5) Ming Tsai’s Tea Rubbed Salmon

tea-salmon

Salmon gets a tea twist in this recipe from Ming Tsai in his cookbook Simply Ming: Easy Techniques for East-Meets-West Meals. You’ll enjoy a thin layer of crispy flavor thanks to this dish’s five-spice chile tea rub. The rub pairs lapsang souchong tea leaves with salt, red pepper flakes, chipotle chili powder, garlic powder, cayenne pepper, onions, and five-spice powder. Served with lemon-infused rice, this dish packs flavor into every bite.

Tips

  • As a rule of thumb, green tea is mild and it will pair well with delicate seafood, veggies, and white meat. Use black tea, or a smoky Lapsang souchong, on steak, pork or portobello mushrooms.
  • If you are going to GRILL your produce, instead of using the tea as a rub, use it in the marinade! With some grills, the fire may char the tea so using as a marinade can prevent that! Concentrate your tea, then add complementary spices to round your marinade before soaking the produce. For example, to include Earl Grey in your marinade, steep 2 Tablespoons of our organic loose leaf Earl Grey in 12oz water for 3-5 minutes. The bergamot flavor of the Earl Grey mixes well with beef and pork. Consider using a floral tea marinade for your chicken dishes.

If you try any of these out, be sure to tag us @theteakitchen on Instagram! Enjoy!

Tea Recipes

Tea Infused Cocktails to Impress Everyone This Holiday Season

November 23, 2021

What do tea and alcohol have in common? They are both in our cocktails this holiday season! It is now that time of the year where the weather is cooling off, the leaves are changing colors and the holidays are right around the corner. We created a list of the best cocktails for this time of year! Whether you need a holiday drink to serve at a party or just want to mix up holiday cocktails at home, we know that something on our list will cheer every tea lover up. Check out our tea inspired cocktails to wow your friends and family this holiday season!

Autumn Chai-Tea-Ni Martini 

Courtesy of The Happy Housie

Smooth. Creamy. A tad bit of spice. This Chai tea based cocktail is sure to warm you up this season!

Ingredients

  • 1 oz Vodka (preferably Vanilla)
  • 1 oz Light Cream (or milk of choice)
  • 2 oz Chai Tea (chilled)
  • Additional:
  • Cinnamon for the rim or top
  • Whipped cream (optional)

Measure the vodka, light cream, and chai tea mix into a martini shaker with ice. Shake lightly until blended and pour into a Martini glass that has been rimmed with cinnamon. Add some whipped cream or a light dusting of cinnamon on top and enjoy this incredibly delicious drink!

Spiced Pear Burbon Iced Tea

This fall cocktail made with spiced pear, bourbon, and aromatic chai tea is exactly what you need for any fall gathering. We like it over ice, but it would be great hot, too!

Ingredients
Pear Simple Syrup

  • 1 pear sliced
  • ½ cup sugar

Cocktail Mix

  • 12 oz chai tea brewed
  • 5 oz pear simple syrup
  • 4 oz bourbon


In a small pot, bring ½ cup of water, sliced pear and sugar to a boil. Remove from heat and bring to room temperature. Strain out fruit and store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 1 month.

Combine chai tea, 5 oz simple syrup, and bourbon in a cocktail shaker and shake to combine. Pour over ice split between 2 glasses and enjoy!

Apple Cider Hot Toddy

Courtesy of Cookie + Kate

This apple cider hot toddy recipe is light and warming, perfect for the holidays. The quality of ingredients goes a long way here, so be sure to use real, unfiltered apple cider (it should be murky). Locally produced cider tends to be fresher and contain fewer (if any) additives. Spiced cider is good, too!

Ingredients

  • 1 cup water
  • 1 green tea or black tea
  • 1 ½ ounces rye whiskey or bourbon
  • 1 ounce real apple cider
  • ½ small lemon
  • Suggested garnishes: thin, round slices of lemon, a cinnamon stick, and star anise

Bring the water to a simmer and carefully pour it over the tea bag into a standard-sized mug, leaving about an inch of room in your mug for the whiskey and cider. Let the tea steep for a few minutes, then discard the bag so the tea doesn’t get bitter.
Pour in the whiskey or bourbon and a hefty splash of apple cider (adjust these amounts to suit your tastes). Squeeze in the juice of half a lemon and garnish with lemon slices, a cinnamon stick and a star anise. Sip up!

Other recipes use a lot more apple cider, which makes them overwhelmingly sweet. This drink isn’t so heavy that it’ll spoil your appetite for mashed potatoes and pumpkin pie. Cheers!

The Harvest Orchard

Courtesy of Kitchen Konfidence

Vodka, apple brandy, pear juice and chilled black tea are shaken together until well-chilled.  Simple syrup is added for sweetness while a flurry of lemon zest on top provides citrusy aromatics.  This pear-forward drink is smooth, sweet and can be prepared in bulk for a crowd!

Ingredients

  • 2 ounces vodka
  • 1/2 ounce apple brandy
  • 2 1/2 ounces pear juice
  • 2 1/2 ounces chilled black tea
  • 1 ounce simple syrup

Add vodka, apple brandy, pear juice, black tea and simple syrup to a cocktail shaker with ice. Cap and shake until well-chilled. Strain into 2 copper mugs filled with crushed ice. Top with grated lemon zest.

Chai Apple Cider Slush

Courtesy of Kitchen Konfidence

This Chai Apple Cider Slushie requires a bit of preparation (frozen cider cubes) so make sure to start this one the night before! For this drink, apple cider is frozen into ice cubes, then blended with apple brandy, ginger beer, lemon juice and cold, spiced chai tea.  You can make a lot of apple cider cubes in advance, and then just blend up a big batch once your are ready to serve!

Ingredients

  • 18 ounces apple cider, frozen in ice cube trays
  • 3 ounces vodka
  • 1 ounce apple brandy
  • 4 ounces ginger beer
  • 3 ounces chilled chai tea
  • 1 ounce fresh lemon juice
  • Cinnamon sticks, to garnish

Combine apple cider cubes, vodka, apple brandy, ginger beer and chai tea in a blender, and blend to a slushie consistency. Pour into short glasses and garnish with cinnamon sticks.



Let us know if you tried any of these cocktails by tagging us and the above creators above or by commenting below! We hope you enjoy them all and have a wonderful holiday season!

Tea Recipes

5 Matcha and Chocolate Desserts You Need In Your Life

November 23, 2021
Five Must Try Matcha Desserts

We are spilling the (matcha) tea on some delicious treats that you can make at home! If you love drinking green tea, it’s time to add the magic power of matcha to your desserts. Matcha has a bright, slightly bitter taste with notes of sweetness and umami. Matcha is meant to be paired with something sweet so it works beautifully with chocolate. Baking with green tea powder takes dessert to a whole new level, and what goes better with matcha than chocolate? Try any of these green tea chocolate desserts to see what we’re talking about:

1) Chocolate Matcha Butter Cups

Chocolate peanut butter cups will always have a special place in our hearts, but when you’re in the mood for a twist, try this recipe from Keepin’ it Kind. The recipe swaps peanut butter out for a combination of Kiss Me Organics matcha powder, coconut butter, and almond flour. Reports vegan blogger Kristy Turner, “The Kiss Me Organics matcha powder blended beautifully with the coconut butter to form a fudge-like matcha candy filling and the almond flour gave it a subtly nutty flavor. Just out of the fridge, they’re a little firmer than the peanut butter cup you may be accustomed to (though still just as delicious), but if you give it a few minutes to rest, it will be come softer and chewier. The matcha salt sprinkled on top pairs beautifully with the chocolate and is just the perfect finishing touch.” Take her word for it, and get baking stat.

2) Matcha Mint Chip Ice Cream

Because mint ice cream is often green, this is the perfect recipe to get a matcha-phobic friend to finally try your favorite green ingredient–it won’t look foreign, and that’s a start! Try this recipe from pastry chef Alanna Taylor-Tobin’s blog The Bojon Gourmet. Says Taylor-Tobin, “To incorporate the mint, I use a technique I learned during my pastry chef days wherein the mint is blanched, shocked, squeezed, and blended into the base. This delivers maximum color and flavor. Scribbling the chocolate into layers of ice cream results in pleasantly uneven chips that shatter and crunch before melting into chocolatey bliss.” You had us at chocolatey bliss.

3) Matcha Green Tea, Chocolate, and Ricotta Balls

This dessert from Apron and Sneakers is quick and easy to whip up. Bite-sized, they’re perfect to show off your artistic side when plating, and with both ricotta and matcha on the dessert menu, you’re sure to provide interest and variety to guests (or yourself!). Writes the author, “Having a problem with the milky tastes of fresh cheese, I am always cautious about eating ricotta. With these mixtures, I don’t taste anything disagreeably milky, just strong chocolate and green tea flavors.” So to the dairy-cautious, we say go boldly in the direction of this treat!

4) Double Chocolate Matcha Hawaiian Tiramisu

This recipe from Half Baked Harvest remixes the classic Itlalian dessert with chocolate, Kahlua, sweet Hawaiian rolls, and matcha. Fun fact: the author was inspired by her pet goat named Tiramisu to develop this dessert. Bet you haven’t heard that one before.  Whether you have a pet named Tiramisu or not, we think you’ll like this busy dessert.

5) Oreo Matcha Cheesecake

These mini matcha cheesecakes are sure to be a crowd pleaser! And the best part? They require no baking! Thats right. No oven! This sounds like a matcha made pair in heaven. This mini no-bake matcha cheesecake pairs a creamy matcha filling with a crunchy oreo cookie crust and whipped cream topping. They go straight into the freezer for an easy treat that you can make even on a weeknight! You could also make these ahead of time as they store in the freezer for up to two months. You can find this delicious recipe here courtesy of Teak and Thyme.

Tea History & Culture

Pinky’s Up or Down? Tea Etiquette 101

November 16, 2021

Etiquette, in simpler words, is defined as good behavior which distinguishes human beings from animals. Etiquette refers to behaving in a socially responsible way.  From dipping you scone in your teacup to who pours the tea, we are diving in and discussing it all. In order to discuss proper tea etiquette, it must be understood that there are two different types of tea traditions: Afternoon Tea and High Tea. Afternoon Tea and High Tea are often mistaken for one another because many people don’t know that they are completely different meals. In traditional British tea ceremonies, afternoon tea was understood as tea that is meant for the upper class whereas high tea was meant for the lower class. Nowadays, we distinguish the two by the times in which they are served and the food dishes that accompany the tea.

Afternoon Tea

As we know it today, afternoon tea is traditionally served between 3 and 5pm. English afternoon teatime usually falls at 4pm, but in the US it is sometimes served as early as 2pm. Afternoon Tea can be credited by Anna Maria Russell, the seventh Duchess of Bedford. In 1840 during Anna’s reign as Duchess, she would become hungry in the mid-afternoon which is when her staff would serve her tea and light sandwiches to keep her full until dinnertime. This habit became a tea tradition in the United Kingdom and has since become a fashionable social event.

Afternoon tea has also been referred to as “low tea” because of the table setting at a low table, in contrast to high tea which is served at higher tables. It was a time meant for the upper class to enjoy tea paired with a lite bite to fill the gap between lunchtime and dinnertime. Some of the lite bites served at afternoon tea include bite-sized sandwiches, freshly baked scones, and delicate pastries. It is important to note that food should be eaten in order of savory to sweet; no dunking your scone into your tea cup!

High Tea

High tea is offered in the early evening. Although high tea includes a more substantive fare when it comes to food, it is less fancy than afternoon tea as it was originally intended for people of the middle or lower classes. High tea is served at a dining table or high counter at the end of the workday. When the tea traditions were first started, afternoon tea was meant for the rich to enjoy while they go about their afternoon waiting for dinnertime. Afternoon tea was not an option to the working class as they were still working at that time and could not afford to spend several hours sipping tea during the workday. High tea is when the working class was expected to enjoy their tea as it was after the work day.

As mentioned earlier, high tea’s food menu was much more substantive than afternoon tea. Some items include: steak, kidney pie, pickled salmon, crumpets and potato to name a few. The reason that high tea was heartier was because this was essentially dinner for the people of the lower class. Whereas afternoon tea was just to hold people of the upper class over until their dinner which was usually around 8 pm.

Tea Etiquette

When attending afternoon tea and high tea, it is important to follow the dress code for afternoon tea and arrive in “smart casual” fashion. Your outfit should be neat and appropriate. For women this may include an appropriate length dress with a sweater or light jacket. For men, proper attire can include pants and a collared shirt. Clothing items that are not appropriate for afternoon tea include t-shirts shorts, or any type of athleisure. It is also not appropriate to wear anything that may be too revealing such as lowcut shirts and skin-tight dresses. The attire for afternoon tea should be a simple “smart casual” outfit similar to what some may wear to church.

Proper manners are also expected when attending both tea ceremonies. Proper manners include sipping your tea quietly, holding the teacup by the handle, and having your pinkie fingers down (yes, you read that right. Pinky’s are meant to be down!) Another expected rule includes keeping electronic devices away. There are also rules in place when it comes to tea and food.

The entire tea set should remain together. If someone asks for tea then the entire set should be passed to them. The saucer remains on the table and is not meant to be picked up while enjoying a cup of tea unless standing or sitting without a table. When adding anything to your tea, milk is expected to be added first. Do not over stir your tea. As previously noted, the order in which you eat your food is also important. Savory foods including bite-sized sandwiches should be consumed first, followed by scones, and saving the sweets for last. Food must be eaten with your hands, and a scone should be broken into smaller pieces before indulging. The handle of your teacup should be pointed a 3 o’clock if right handed and 9 o’clock if left handed.

What to serve

Food differs when attending afternoon or high tea. Afternoon tea can expect light food bites such as mini sandwiches, scones, and mini desserts. High tea requires silverware to eat the food and typically includes some sort of meat dish. Just as there are certain foods served during afternoon tea, there are certain teas served as well. Teas served during afternoon tea include Earl Grey, and other variations of black teas such as Assam and Darjeeling which can be found on our online collection of loose leaf teas. Our earl grey tea is perfect to serve at afternoon tea as it offers a light taste of delicately blended large leaf black tea and Bergamot oil. Although it is less traditional, herbal teas may also be offered during afternoon tea. Stronger teas are served during High Tea to compliment the heartier meal. This may include a black tea such as the Blackcurrant black tea listed on our online collection of black teas.

While many use the terms afternoon tea and high tea interchangeably, it is important to know and understand the differences between the tea. Tea rooms are found all across the world and may differ in traditions. Read our post on Tea Rooms to Add to Your Bucket List to find a place near you today.