When Autumn comes and it's cold outside forget water and squash, I need something hot. I turn to fruity tea and my spice cupboard. If you've had the pleasure of sipping a wonderful cup of Chai tea in the past you'll know the power a few spices can wield. Well, why not buy the spices yourself and dress up your other teas too?
I get very English when it comes to tea; Earl Grey, Breakfast, Chai - pour in some dairy and everything seems brighter. But if you want something different and lighter try fruit or herbal tea. Problem is they can be a bit boring. Fortunately the powers in the East (or China) invented the great and powerful teapot and our supermarkets import exotic spices so we can brew brew brew to our heart's content.
Today I wanted some 'orange crush' and to spice it up I selected a beautiful stick of cinnamon, tossed it into the old teapot with 2 orange teabags and brewed away. A spoonful of sugar or honey + brewing time and I'm good to go!
You can do this with any fruit tea, just experiment! As a general rule anything that sounds like it would go into a dessert should work. And according to my spice cupboard you can't go wrong with any spice beginning with a C !!
|Toss into your teapot - Star Anise, Cinnamon, Cloves, Cardamom, Cayenne Pepper|
A chunk of peeled ginger would also be beautiful - add it with the cinnamon for a great tonic to get you better if you're ill! Red peppercorns are a common ingredient of Chai tea, I wonder how they'd taste? Don't be scared of the Cayenne pepper; it'll give your metabolism a boost and add a little heat without much actual flavour. As a general rule go easy with the cloves, if you're leaving your tea to brew just 1 or 2 cloves for the whole pot will be enough similarly, with the Star Anise; half a star will be enough.
Do let me know what you try, I'll be brewing up some more in my cauldron this Halloween!
Ciao for now