Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Culinary adventures in tea!

I’m always on the lookout for ways to incorporate tea into my diet. So, when I found a cooking workshop that used teas or tisanes in an entire meal, I jumped on it and signed up for the class. It was instructed by President’s Choice, a food company that also includes other divisions such as banking and travel, under their management. They offer the PC Cooking School in many of their large grocery stores, demonstrating a variety of lessons for all age groups. 

I attended the Cooking with Tea class at a school one evening and it was a blast. The course included a starter, entrĂ©e, dessert, and beverages including wine. It was pretty impressive, and they didn’t skimp on the portions. Here’s what we made and enjoyed: 

Rosemary lemon iced-tea.

Harissa roasted carrot salad.

Black tea rubbed beef tenderloin.

Grapefruit curd and ginger snap crumb.

It was a fun, interactive course that got me interested in other classes the school offers. I’ll definitely be signing up for other interesting workshops.

Wednesday, February 28, 2018

Give peace a chance!

Whilst out doing my weekly grocery shopping, I came across iced-tea beverages of a brand I had not heard of. The brand is called Peace Tea and it’s by The Coca-Cola Company. I really liked the graphic designs on the cans, and the price wasn’t bad, so I picked up a few. 

All we are saying...

Peace Tea doesn’t contain a long list of sugary items. It’s actually made up of natural flavours and actual tea. Nice!

I purchased 3 different flavours that were available at my grocery store: Green Tea, Lemon, and Raspberry. I tried each one of them and compared them to each other in terms of colour and taste. The colour of the liquors were slightly different from each other. The most evident was the Green Tea, which was much paler in colour. give peace a chance!

All 3 were sweet but not super sugary like some other iced-tea brands on the market. The Lemon and the Raspberry had a slight tangy taste. Each one had hints of their respective flavours. I really liked the Green Tea and the Raspberry flavoured drinks. All 3 of the drinks tasted clean and refreshing. They were great. 

Taking a chance here!

I normally make my own iced-tea, but these drinks I would definitely go for again. I will have to try the other flavours I didn’t get to purchase. The price for this 695 mL can also made for a good buy. Peace out!

Sunday, February 25, 2018

My Cuppa: Tea Time With Tao!

At this past Toronto Tea Festival, I gave my time to volunteer as an Exhibitor Support. For our time spent working at the event, all volunteers were given a gift of a couple of tea samples of our choosing. One of the samples I selected is called Tangerine Ginger by Tao Tea Leaf. Today, I’m sipping and reviewing this tisane!

This Tangerine Ginger tisane is a blend of many elements including: ginger, hibiscus, licorice root, rose hips, and various organic fruits. It can enjoyed hot or cold, and is one of Tao’s top sellers. 

In its dry format!

I prepared my tisane as instructed by steeping the fragrant dry leaves for about 5 minutes in water brought to a full boil. The gorgeous red liquor produced had a spicy aroma of ginger and fruit much like the dry leaves. 

Poured to perfection!

The taste wasn’t bad at all. Not my usual cuppa, but I did like the tangy and the spicy notes of the ginger at the end of each sip. Again, not something I would normally go for, and perhaps that’s why I might have chosen this sample. 

In the red!

Though I did enjoy Tangerine Ginger, I’m thinking I might like it even more so over ice. Maybe even mixed with some alcohol such as vodka? Hmmm…

Thursday, February 22, 2018

Tea Readings: A cup of tea is all I need!

Cup Of Tea

The waitress asks what will it be
And I respond with quite ease
No dish or side this time for me
But a cup of tea if you would please 

Though graciously she does agree
That half past two is time for tea
She soon returns with what I need
A cup of tea if you would please 

A purple pot she sets by me
With spoon to stir the boiling tea
I calmly raise my cup to thee 
To a cup of tea if you would please 

As wisps of steam drift up with ease
The rolling in my tum decrees 
This chai delight empowers me
A cup of tea if you would please 

No sugar will I ever need 
To taste the apple and the seed
The spice of life which sets me free
Just a cup of tea if you would please 

Now comes my check it's time to leave 
And the bottom of my cup I see
One final sip to go with me
A cup of tea if you would please 

SS (Seanathon, April 2016)

Wednesday, February 7, 2018

The Fest is the Best!

Well, another year of the Toronto Tea Festival has come and gone, and I had a blast. I volunteered once again as an Exhibitor Support, taking care of the needs of our vendors. My duties were the same as before where I was called upon to fetch water and provide directions. Nothing too difficult, but I enjoy this role because it gives me the opportunity to engage with the vendors and see their tea offerings. 

This year, there was a VIP night which I may consider signing up for next year if it’s running in addition to reprising my regular role. It’s a fun, simple gig that allows me to see old friends and check out the new companies and their products. What’s not to like?

Here are some images I captured after completing my shift. Sipping samples where I can!

My bag of goodies!

All about the tea!

Sippin' some samples!

Japanese Tea Ceremony!

Monday, January 29, 2018

My Cuppa: A taste of genuine Oolong!

For this past Christmas, I received a gift of tea from a co-worker. The tea is an oolong from Genuine Tea, one of my favourite tea brands. I know it’s going to be good, as I have tried their teas before, and have never been disappointed. This particular tea is called Ginseng Oolong. Here are my thoughts.

Genuine Tea for a change!

A spring harvest from the Fujian Province, this oolong has been partially oxidized and then rolled in Ginseng powder. According to the package, it’s “a sweet, creamy profile with a floral finish”. Sounds good to me!

I prepared the oolong as instructed, using a 1 tsp of the tightly balled tea leaves, and infusing them in 8 oz of water boiled to 90 °C, for 3 – 5 minutes. 

Yup.  That's tea.

My first cup did taste sweet and floral, but it was quite subtle. It was a nice golden colour but not much aroma. Still, an enjoyable cup. I prepared a second infusion with much better results. The flavour was stronger with a thicker coating on the tongue.

A perfect cupping!

Definitely felt the creaminess the second time around. I tried a third infusion, allowing the leaves to steep just over 5 minutes. I didn’t really detect much difference from round 2 though. There wasn’t any bitterness in any of the infusions either. I really liked this oolong. 

Genuine goodness!

Ginseng Oolong is yet another winner from Genuine Tea. I’ve sampled other teas from this wonderful company, and look forward to trying many more of their products.

Thursday, January 25, 2018

Tea Readings: Finding love with tea and cake!

Tea & Cake

First off, a declaration; I love you!
There’s surely no mistake.
And if you’ll be my lover, a promise;
Our lives will be filled with tea and cake.

There is nothing I wouldn't give you.
Just take it! My heart, my mind, my soul.
My money, I’ll give it. Take the credit card too!
Your happiness is my only true goal.

But more than that; I’ll give you laughter.
We will be laughing all the time.
And when I make you fantastic dinners,
Our laughs will mix with wine.

Oh, I know I can make you happy!
Let me love you, for goodness sake!
And if you’ll be my lover, my dear,
Our lives will be filled with tea and cake.

~ Elise Reid, May 2014