Cooking With Tea (pt2)
If you love tea and you don’t just want to drink huge amounts every day, you have an alternative option. You can cook with tea! There are some basic ways that you can you use tea as an ingredient in your food. There are also many other ways to use tea in some very interesting recipes.
So, when you are using tea as a food ingredient, you may want to select teas that would pair well with your final recipe choice. Here is a list to help you find the best teas for the food that you are making. This is a general list of tea flavors by tea type. After you have decided on a tea for your food, you are ready to use it as an ingredient.
Black Tea Flavors
Black teas tend to have bolder, fuller flavors than Greens and Oolongs.
- Cut plant stems
Oolong Tea Flavors
Oolong teas tend to be complex, nuanced and capable of a wide range of flavors
- Orchids, gardenias and other flowers
- Lychee and other exotic fruits
- Peach, apricot, plums and other stone fruits
- Stewed fruits
- Citrus (especially nectarines, clementines, pomelos and the like)
- Green melons
- Roasted barley and other grains
- Just-baked bread
- Milk chocolate
- Meringue and caramel
- Minerals and rocks
White Tea Flavors
White teas are typically mild, subtle and delicate.
- Flowers (especially rose, violet and honeysuckle)
- Field grasses
- Dried wood
- Bamboo shoots
- Potato/taro root/lotus root
- Nuts (especially walnuts or chestnuts)
- Apricot or peach
Pu-erh Tea Flavors
Pu-erh teas tend to be deep, dark, rich and intense.
- Mud or mold (sometimes an indicator of poor quality)
- Dark/bittersweet chocolate
- Nuts (especially pecans)
- Plum or stewed stonefruits
- Moss, loam/peat moss, wood (especially cedar), mushrooms, fallen leaves and other old-growth forest notes
- Mineral springs/caves
- Molasses/maple syrup/wildflower honey
Here are some of the most common ways to add tea to recipes
- Infuse milk or other liquid ingredients with tea.
- Melt solid ingredients (such as chocolate or butter), infuse them with tea and then use them in solid or liquid form.
- Add powdered tea like gunpowder tea or Matcha tea as a garnish, spice, rub or partial replacement for flour (about 1 teaspoon powdered tea in each cup of flour should suffice)
You can also smoke meats with tea leaves, marinate meats with brewed tea and maybe you can add a pinch of tea leaves to water for a substitute for plain boiling water.
Again just some easy and simple ways to use your favorite teas.
Here is a recipe from food 52. Really easy and delicious.
This recipe makes four 4 oz. servings
Use 6 ounces of high quality bittersweet or semisweet chocolate chips (about 2/3 cup)
- ½ cup boiling water
- 1 Earl Grey tea bag
- 2 teaspoons freshly grated orange zest
- 4 teaspoons granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2 large egg whites
Lightly sweetened whipped cream, mascarpone, or greek yogurt (for topping)
Bring water to a boil. Add tea bag, orange zest, and sugar. Cover and steep for five minutes. Place chocolate chips and vanilla extract in blender. Strain steeped tea into blender (you want just the liquid in the blender, not the zest). Let sit about 30-60 seconds to allow the chocolate to begin to melt. Cover the blender and blend on high for 15 to 30 seconds. Add egg whites to the blender, cover, and blend on high for about 60 seconds. Divide mousse between 4 small serving containers. (Get creative! Think 1/2 pint mason jars, tea cups, cute bowls, etc.) Cover and refrigerate until set. This usually takes about 3 to 4 hours, but can be done up to 2 days in advance. Top mousse with a dollop of lightly sweetened whip cream, mascarpone, or greek yogurt, and serve. I used greek yogurt with a pinch or orange zest and a splash of orange juice quite successfully, but play around with your own favorite flavorings!