"You can never get a cup of tea large enough or a book long enough to suit me."
~ C.S. Lewis

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Tea Review: Simple Loose Leaf's Sweet Peach White

Sweet Peach White - Simple Loose Leaf

Simple Loose Leaf 
"Simple Loose Leaf was founded on the idea that the tea community needs a member curated tea of the month club. We offer a way for our members, whether new to tea or an old hand at it, to experience tea and have the thrill of receiving something new in the mail every month in a way that keeps the reins of the club in our club member's hands.  Simple Loose Leaf offers the first members curated tea of the month club, where every member decides their own path and we simply lend a helpful hand."
Ingredients: Shou Mei White Tea, Safflowers, Sunflowers, Freeze-Dried Peaches, Peach Flavour

Steep Time:
3 minutes

First Sip Thought: "The taste is just like the smell!"

Smell:
I always love when you get tea in the mail and can already smell it when you haven't even opened the package yet. This tea is just like that. It smells fresh - like laying under a blooming peach tree on a warm summer day.

Taste:
Have you ever had a tea that smelt too good to be true and it was just that - tasted horrible? Sweet Peach White is nothing like that. As my first sip thought states, I was delighted to find out that taste wasn't deceiving from the smell. This white tea is fresh and light - a nice twist on their Shou Mei White Tea. The perfect balance of sweet and fruity. If you were to add sugar it kind of resembles a "fuzzy peach" taste. I especially enjoy the freeze-dried peaches addition to the blend. I feel like that makes this blend juicy and it's nice to have the actual thing rather than only a flavouring. I indulged in this tea hot, and frozen as a popsicle. I'll have to share my popsicle recipe shortly as this tea was the perfect base for it because of the natural sweetness. For now, I'm going to test my patience and try to cold-steep this tea overnight because I have a feeling it'll be amazing!

 
Verdict: 5 out of 5 tea leaves
**If you or someone you know would like a tea reviewed, contact me.

Monday, July 28, 2014

Avocado Tea Popsicles Recipe


We've made iced tea and granita to cool down this summer but it's never enough is it? Another great way to beat the heat are popsicles! However, so many are filled with refined sugar and chemicals for colouring. Homemade popsicles are easy to make and fun to taste. Here's a nutritious and tea filled recipe for you to try :)

Avocado Tea Popsicles

Ingredients

  • Juice of 1 lime
  • One whole avocado
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 cup green tea of your choice (I used a coconut based one to follow Joyous Health's original recipe - Hawa-Ya-Doin' from Steeped Tea Inc.)

Directions

  1. Gently heat a kettle of water and steep 1 cup of your green tea for three minutes. 
  2. Strain the tea leaves and stir honey directly into the one hot cup. Set it aside in the fridge to cool.
  3. Place the lime juice and avocado into a small food processor or blender. Blend until smooth.
  4. After your green tea has cooled, add it to the blender and allow it to mix well. 
  5. Pour ingredients into popsicle molds. Depending on the size of popsicle molds you have this amount can make 2-4 popsicles. 
  6. Try your hardest to wait for the delicious avocado tea popsicles to freeze overnight.
  7. Cool yourself down & enjoy!

Friday, July 25, 2014

Tea in a K-Cup? Yup!

I'm still a strong believer that in order to get the best taste from your tea leaves you should steep them directly in your teacup or teapot. However, with growing technology people always find a simpler way to do so. For instance, Tassimo & Keurig machines. In this case, if I'm going to have tea with one of these I would want it to be different. True Honey Teas is just that. Their single serve tea pods are filled with tea leaves that are sweetened with natural local honey. They are the only organization in the world to put honey sweetener in the pod with the tea.


If I like to sweeten a tea, I normally will go for honey instead of sugar so True Honey Teas was made for me! A good source of carbohydrates, natural honey sweetens with no additives or preservatives.
Another great benefit is that in my experience, when adding honey to my tea after it has steeped, it tends to not mix fully well with the tea. I found that with True Honey Teas' pods the honey gently mixes with the tea during the brewing cycle leaving an evenly sweetened cup.

I had the opportunity to try three of the teas in True Honey Teas selection. They have four and the one I did not get a chance to try was Earl Grey.

Here are my thoughts:
  • Spiced Chai - More and more I'm in love with chai. True Honey Teas' Spiced Chai did not disappoint. It's an energizing blend of spices that is great for the body, mind and soul. Even with the natural honey sweetness, the chai warms you.
  • Green - The first time I ever put honey in my tea was with a green tea for a sore throat. However, I'm starting to enjoy green tea even more iced these days. Of course, when I make iced teas I like to play around with them for extra flavour. The natural honey with the green tea was remarkable. The green tea is heated immediately to slow oxidation. It was a perfect cup of iced bright green tea - very soothing.
  • English Breakfast - This is one of their most popular and I can see why. Great from any time of day, it's a strong body blend and the creamed honey gives it a nice twist. Add a splash of milk and this is my go-to tea from True Honey Teas. 
If you're someone who loves to sweeten their tea with honey, or enjoys trying new things I would say go for this! Technically not the proper way to brew your tea but it's efficient and delicious. Check out their products online here.

Saturday, July 19, 2014

The "Teatox" Experiment with Your Tea's Tiny Tea

Teatox: A new term used to describe a "detox tea" system to help individuals lose weight.

I first learned about "teatox" through an account (will remain nameless) on Instagram. I was a bit annoyed that someone would advertised their "tea" as a fast and effective way to lose weight. What they didn't tell you was that there was a laxative effect which is not at all healthy for you! My first thought when I heard about a "teatox" was "couldn't that technically be all tea?" With all the health benefits from various types of teas how could someone just label one specific blend as a teatox? The difference with it is that it's sold that way. It comes with a schedule, eating plan and exercise tips. After extensive research, I decided I wanted to try one for my blog. I picked out Your Tea's 14 days Tiny Teatox as it was the most gentle one I found. No laxatives and derived from Traditional Chinese Medicine principles. 
 
Before I begin this review, let me start by explaining my intention for this teatox. I did not want to lose weight, instead my focus was on the tea itself. The taste is what mattered most to me and anything else I enjoyed that came with it would be just a bonus.

"My intricately balanced herbal blend will nourish and cleanse your digestive system, providing it the support it needs to replenish and restore back to its natural state. This cleanse will assist with reducing weight, easing bloating, increasing digestion functionality, improving skin clarity, increasing energy levels and alleviate issues associated with food intolerance. Formulated with Chinese medicine herbs and based upon Chinese medicinal principles, TinyTea is the only herbal cleanse on the market that does not produce a laxative effect. TinyTea has been created by qualified Chinese Medicine practitioners with considerable years of experience." 
Source: johannekohlmetz.dk
Ingredients: Oolong tea, Sicklepod Senna See, Loutus Leaf, Hawthron Berry

Steep Time: 7 minutes

Directions: Steep one tea bag in boiling water for 5-7 minutes and consume 30 minutes prior to a meal, three times a day.

Smell: As I opened the package that came to my door step I instantly could smell Your Tea's Tiny Teatox. It's a relaxing and soothing scent that kind of has a "bounce" to it. It is a very strong scent and that's what I love about it. For example, the box was sitting in my room for a couple of hours and now my room is like a Your Tea headquarters!

Taste: Hot or cold, I enjoyed the taste more than I expected. I don't sweeten it at all although Your Tea says you are able to use lemon or honey to adjust the taste and still get results.

Overall: I feel great but then again I feel great whenever I drink tea. I will also say that I did notice a clear up with my skin. To be honest, I didn't stick to the three times a day schedule. Simply because I often forgot about it or because there just wasn't enough time for me to actually make the tea, drink it 30 minutes before my meal and then eat. Whether or not it doesn't help you lose weight it's still a healthy beverage to consume. I think the experiences will differ from everyone that tries this as no two bodies are the same. Don't expect to purchase this tea or any other teatox and let it work it's "miracles". You still have to go out there and put the work in yourself. Take advantage of Your Tea's helpful eating plan. Eat healthy, exercise, and love yourself. Although I am in love with the packaging, I wish that one day Your Tea will move away from bagged tea and on to loose leaf. Show us your all! 

You can find out more about Your Tea and their tea products at their website here.
Find them on Instagram: @yourtea & @tinyteatox

Friday, July 11, 2014

How to Tea: Make your own latte at home!

There are various versions online of how to make your own tea latte at home. I have been playing around with this quite a bit lately and it's a lot of fun to test different methods out. The great part is that you don't need an expensive machine. Making your own latte at home is simple, cheaper, and it's just a great feeling when you're drinking a fancy beverage that you know you made yourself!

Today, I'm sharing with you three different methods I tried in order from least favourite to the best! The tea I used for this experiement was Seven Sisters Tea's Caramel Cherry Cheesecake. Bonus: for a limited time, The Cup of Life readers can get 20% off their entire online order with Seven Sisters Tea. Shop around on their website and be sure to enter the code: TEACUPOFLIFE at the check out! 


What You Need

  • your favourite mug/teacup
  • a kettle filled with fresh water
  • measuring cup
  • 1-2 teaspoons of the tea of your choice
  • milk (latte = milk in Italian!)
  • sweetener of your choice

Directions 

1. Begin by grabbing your favourite mug or teacup to drink out of. 
2. Boil water at the appropriate temperature for the tea you use and pour it over 1-2 teaspoons of tea leaves. Fill your mug or teacup about 3/4 of the way because you want to leave good enough room for the milk.
3. Let your tea steep for the amount of time needed and then add a the sweetener of your choice directly into the tea. 
4. Measure about half a cup of milk into a measuring cup. You can use any type of milk that you like too - skim, whole, almond...the possibilities are endless!

Now for the fun part.... 

Microwave Method

  • Heat the milk in the microwave for 1 minute. The microwave will warm up the milk and gently steam it. It may create a small froth like effect on the surface. This is my least favourite way to do it but if a microwave is all you have to use it's better than nothing! 

Stove Top Method

  • In a small sauce pan pour your milk and have it heat up on medium heat. It's important to not let your milk boil. Once you begin to see small bubbles form take it off the heat. I think this way is pretty decent, I especially like using it when I make tea infused hot chocolate as it creates a creamy consistency. 

Hand-Held Frother

  • I few years back I got a hand held frother from a store that was closing. I can't find the exact one I have but it's very similar to this one at Ikea for four bucks. I know you can get other ones like this else where but I've always found them to be a lot pricier. For four bucks you can't go wrong. Battery operated, you place the frother directly into the milk and press the button. The trick is to not do it for too long or the froth consistency will ruin. Once you notice a good froth you can stop. It took me a while to get the hang of it but now I'm always using it!
For all three of these methods, after you prepare the milk to your desire you can gently pour it directly into your mug of tea. Some liquid milk will go into the tea and you should have a froth at the surface. There's an old rule I heard once that if you place a spoon on top of the froth and it does not sink then that means you've done a great job. It wasn't possible for me to do the first few times though! If you like you can even add a sweetener to the milk before you froth it.
Experiment and enjoy! 

Monday, July 7, 2014

Tea Round App


I have shared a tea app a few posts back and I just came across another that differs from it. Have you ever wanted a cup of tea but didn't feel like making it? Tried to make someone else make the tea? Tea Round App is kind of silly, yet useful as it is all about settling who has to make the tea. It's only available for iPhone at the moment and I'm hoping it will make it's way to Android soon.

Easy to use, Tea Round App consists of four simple steps:

Step 1: To kick things off you need to choose, edit or add a new Tea Round. You can save as many as you want for home, office, friends and family.
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Step 2: Now you can remove the sick and work-shy.. and add those looking to sneak in on the round.. You know who you are.
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Step 3: Now for the magic. Shake, tap or spin and a brewer gets chosen at random. Remember, Tea Round’s decision is final and legally binding.

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Step 4: There is no step 4. What did you think it was going to be? Just sit back and wait for your cup ‘o’ gold. Or make the round if you lost. 

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If you're interested in any more information about Tea Round App, or just to download it for FREE you can do so from their website here.
 
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