Friday, January 4, 2013

Winter Warmers ? Tea with an extra kick! - Food & Drink Articles ...

Some are drunk cold, some hot, but the spicy mix should give a winter warming kick. The first one is a bit of a cheat as it doesn't use tea as an ingredient but is a fruit tea instead. All of the others use black tea which is widely available. All of the common blends available in UK supermarkets are blends of black tea so would be fine to use. All of the recommendations given below have no alcohol in them as you never know which of your guests may be taking medication. There are alcoholic tea recipes which can be found online.

Hot Cranberry Tea

This is a really good spicy drink for a New Year party. It serves 14.

What you need ? 3? litres of water, 350g of cranberries, 2 tea cups of sugar, juice of 2 oranges and juice of 2 lemons, 12 cloves, 2 cinnamon sticks.

Combine the water and cranberries in a large pot. Bring to the boil and let simmer for 30 minutes before adding the rest of the ingredients. Then cover and leave to steep for an hour.

Mint Tea Punch

This serves 10 so can be another party drink.

What you need ? 4 tea bags, 12 mint sprigs, 1 cup of sugar, 1 cup of orange juice, ? cup of lemon juice.

Place the mint and tea bags in a bowl and pour over 3 cups of boiling water. Leave for 8 minutes. Remove the mint and tea then add sugar and citrus juices giving each a stir. Then add 5 cups of cold water.

Ginger Chai Tea

Serves 4.

What you need ? 1 piece of grated root ginger, 3 tablespoons of sugar, 1? teaspoons of black tea, 500ml of milk, 300ml of water.

Add ginger and tea to boiling water and let it continue to boil for 2 minutes. Add the milk and let it simmer for 2 to 3 minutes before adding the sugar. Serve as soon as the tea colours the milk.

Warm Spiced Apple Punch

Serves 4.

What you need ? 1 litre of apple juice, juice of 1? lemons, 1 sliced orange, 2 tablespoons of sugar, 500 ml of black tea, 1 cinnamon stick, 2 cloves.

Prepare the black tea to the preferred strength measuring out 500ml. Place all of the ingredients into a pan and gently heat, don't boil, for about 5 minutes. Then serve.

Masala Spicy Tea

Serves 3.

What you need ? 2 teabags, 2 cinnamon sticks, 2 cardamom pods, 2 cloves, 1 black peppercorn, ? cup of condensed milk.

Tip 2 cups of water into a pan adding the various spices. Bring to the boil and leave simmering for a minute. Add the condensed milk bring back to the boil. Strain and serve.

I find it better to slightly crush the spices to make a fuller flavour. Any drinks using lose tea need to be strained as it's very unpalatable to suddenly find a mouth full of tea leaves.

These recipes can all be modified by adding other spices to the mix. I find it fun trying different combinations and experimenting for my own drinks. I would never recommend giving an untried winter warmer to anybody just in case it's not palatable. Some of my experiments have been unpleasant to the palate to say the least.

Enjoy the winter warmers and kick start your new year in style.


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