Lapsang Souchong Vegetable Soup

lapsang souchong, black tea, cooking with tea, vegetables, vegetable soup, stovetop cooking

Everyone in my household currently has a cold, typical of Winter, I suppose; so I decided to cook a healthy, wholesome soup for dinner. And having recently partaken in a discussion about Tea Pairing and Cooking with Tea on Twitter, I decided to take this leaf and put it in my own book:

 

I love making soup, it is so easy, and can be very creative. One can create any flavour, evoking any emotion, by creating soup. It is delicious, if you make it so, and, also, rather easy to eat. Versatile, soup can be smooth or course, or chunky. Just select your favourite ingredients, flavours, and colours (I always cook by colour), chop them up, boil them in water for an hour or so, and serve. Or blend, and then serve, depending on your preferred style. Mine usually falls under the latter.

I selected for this soup:

lapsang souchong, camomile, tea, vegetable soup, spinach garnish

Lapsang Souchong Vegetable Soup accompanied by Camomile Herbal Tea

  • Potato
  • Red Carrot
  • Beetroot
  • Capsicum
  • Cauliflower
  • Leek
  • Pumpkin
  • Thyme
  • Fennel Seeds
  • Black Pepper
  • Fortisalt
  • Cider Vinegar
  • Spinach leaf, to garnish.

 

 

 

Having incredibly disliked this Greenfield brand Lapsang Souchong as a solitary tea, I was delighted to find it work wonderfully within the deep flavour of my soup. I’m fast becoming a tea chef, tea streaming through my veins at this point, and I’m smiling broadly about it. The Lapsang Souchong tea provided a brilliant smokey undertone to the overall flavour, balanced delicately by the natural sweet flavour of Fennel, and off-set by the Cider Vinegar, creating a delicious angle. The strongest flavours are the Beetroot and Carrot, standing boldly in front of Potato and Pumpkin, shortly followed by the shy presence of Cauliflower and Capsicum, cuddled with Thyme. The Leek cannot be distinguished, and the pepper provides a pleasant, subtle spice.

What better way to eat a tea-spiked soup, than with a delectable tea? I don’t think there is one, to be honest. Heck, I don’t think there is a better way to eat any meal, than with a delectable tea. For this meal, I chose Twinings Pure Camomile. Pretty flowers, beautiful scent, delicious to drink! I simply love Camomile tea, I drink it everyday. Great taste and relaxing serenity. What I did not anticipate was the effect it had of clearing the palate, allowing me to fully experience every mouthful of soup after a sip of tea. I’m not sure about you, but I’ve always been in the mind of the very first bite of a meal being the greatest, the tastiest, the most vibrant. And every mouthful after a sip of Pure Camomile was The First Bite. I’ve never enjoyed a soup so thoroughly. I don’t think I’ve ever made a soup so creatively.

Thick liquid orgasm, swirling down my body, uplifting my senses, invoking a smirk, energizing my fantasies. The soup is devine. The Tea accompaniment just as elegant.

I highly recommend.


Have you cooked soup with Tea before?

which flavours pique your fancy?

I Ate My Tea Today..

kerikeri, organic looseleaf tea, tea, loose leaf, honeybush, flour, edmonds, baking powder, budget, butter, whole fat milk, salt

I ate my tea today. I never thought I would say such a thing. I hadn’t ever thought of baking or cooking with tea, until recently when it was brought to my attention by The Daily Tea. Even with my recently blossomed obsession with all things tea, it had not occurred to me to cook with it. I’ve probably been too busy drinking it, and if I’m not drinking it, I’m peeing it! Okay, maybe tmfi, but reading it back made me chuckle and blush something outrageous, so it shan’t be edited out. However, I have rambled off topic, so back to eating tea:

The concept instantly grasped me, and I kicked myself thrice for not discovering it sooner. What better to accompany a wonderful cup of tea than wonderful food? and what better food than wonderful food made with wonderful tea? and now I’m hooked. I just want to make more. It’s clear now there is no turning back…. the tea has taken hold.. tea is now my master. SO, my first attempt at baking with tea, and not sure where to start, there are just so many possibilities, so many teas to use, so many foods to make! so little time to live. Putting it in such a way saddens me at the amount of people not drinking tea, not simply stopping and sipping and smiling and loving and laughing and living. 

I have heard it said the best meals are made when the heart and soul are poured into them. Tea is heart and soul. Pour it into your meals. And because they are such a perfect match, I decided to pour my heart and soul into some scrumptious scones.

organic, looseleaf, honeybush, tea, scones

organic looseleaf honeybush tea scones

Having never baked with tea before, I had no real idea what I was doing, and being a rather terrible baker, the task took me a lot longer than I had set out for, and was more perplexing than anticipated. Most recipes for basic scones state a ten minute prep time and ten to fifteen minute cook time. The task on a whole took me over an hour to complete from flicking on the kettle to pulling the scones from the oven. I went with a sugar-free scone recipe, because who puts sugar in scones?? and went with Kerikeri Tea Organic Looseleaf Honeybush tea. I chose this tea, because it has an awesome flavour, and is a very healthy drop, void of caffeine.

The next hurdle I had to topple over was that scones are not generally made with water, so how was I to integrate a strong brew of Honeybush into the recipe? I finalised on a thought to half the milk content, and replace it with the tea. This seemed to work splendidly, however next time I will make a stronger brew, as the flavour did not shine through as I would have liked; honeybush being a rather mild tea, delicious as it is.

My ingredient quantities consisted of

organic-looseleaf-honeybush-scone-dough

scone dough speckled with organic looseleaf honeybush

  • 4 cups of plain flour
  • 8 teaspoons of baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons of Himalayan salt
  • 100 grams of butter
  • 1 cup of whole fat milk
  • 1 cup of double strength brewed honeybush tea
  • the 2 teaspoons of loose leaves were also added
  • sprinkle of cinnamon to top

All in all, they’re a good scone. I first tried them once they had cooled, spread with four-fruits jam, and accompanied by a blend of Earl Grey and Red Bush teas. The Jam flavour overpowered the honeybush mercilessly, and this afternoon tea would have been far tastier had I omitted that jam I am so accustomed to eating on scones. Nevertheless, the honeybush flavour is present, ever so subtly. The leaves, a must, as without them I imagine the flavour would lack considerably, and the cinnamon is more for aesthetics, as it, too, is extremely subtle, but this was somewhat intentional.

organic, looseleaf, honeybush, dough, segmented, cut, cinnamon

honeybush scone dough cut into segments, sprinkled with cinnamon, ready to bake

 

 

At this moment, as my fingertips patter away at the keyboard, I am relishing perhaps a few too many of these scones, but spread with Olivani Olive Oil Table Spread, and nothing else. Without some kind of spread, I fear the scones may be too dry, as the piquancy of the tea is very real, adding to the already dry taste of scones in general. And, of course, I am also sipping an admirable chamomile tea blend, with peppermint, passion flower, strawberry leaf, valerian root, catnip and scullcap, by Red Seal. A very tranquil, relaxing drop of tea, indeed. A brilliant mix of flavour to pair with the honeybush scones, I might add. My favourite sensations in this moment. As I listen to the rain beating down on my roof, and the wind billowing at the windows and the walls. Stopping and sipping and smiling and loving and laughing and living.

 


 

 

if you haven’t tried baking or cooking with tea, I do recommend giving it a go. There is just so much you can do with it, from using just the leaves in your recipes, or even brewing a tea to add.

Feel free to add your ideas or what you’ve made in the comments. Happy experimenting!

organic, looseleaf, honeybush, scones, baking in the oven, cinnamon

honeybush scones baking in the oven