Miss Ellie's Tea Recipes
There are a lot of ways that tea can be prepared. Tea is a versatile beverage as well as ingredient in food. Additionally tea oil, which comes from the seeds from the Camilla Sinensis plant is becoming more common in the west and is a great oil for use on salads etc.
True Southern Sweet Tea
Sweet Tea is a southern classic, an institution. It may seem basic enough sugar + tea = sweet tea, but its not.
Sprinkle a pinch of baking soda into a heat-proof, glass pitcher. Pour in boiling water, and add tea bags. Cover, and allow to steep for 15 minutes.
Remove tea bags, and discard; stir in Sugar until dissolved. Pour in cool water, then refrigerate until cold.
The secret is in the baking soda. It sounds bizarre but the baking soda counters the acidity in the tea making this tea drink amazingly smooth.
Making Masala Chai is somewhat of an art, but here is a reasonably traditional recipe with accessible ingrediants. This recipe makes 2 small cups, it can be easily multiplied.
Put 1-1/2 cups water in saucepan. Add the cinnamon, cardamom, and cloves and bring to a boil. Cover, turn heat to low and simmer for 10-15 minutes. Add the milk and sugar and bring to a simmer again. Throw in the tea leaves, cover, and turn off the heat. After 2 minutes, strain the tea into two cups and serve immediately.
Cooking with Tea As An Ingredient
More and more cooks are branching out and trying new things. Sometimes this ends disastrously and sometimes amazing things happen. Tea is a hot area of experimentation as it becomes more popular. Some cooks are using tea as a spice in marinades with great success. It can add a subtle Asian flare to a basic salt and pepper rub. Tea is also a great tenderizer. It can be used as a marinade for tougher cuts of meat without overpowering the flavor of the meat itself.
Tea is also being used is desserts like this Green Tea Sorbet.
2 tablespoons fresh Ginger, chopped
In a small saucepan, add the Ginger and water. Bring to boil over medium heat then turn off. Add Tea Bag and allow to steep for 3 minutes. Using a fine mesh sieve strain the liquid into a freezer-safe medium sized bowl (non-metallic) and discard the solids. Let cool for 30 minutes.
Think outside the Tea Pot!