Ahh summer! Your sunshine makes one want to "squeeze the day," yet it is also draining at the same time. Your long days allow for large amounts of time spent sowing and reaping the harvest from the summer garden, basking in the sun out on the beach or in the orchard or hiking the mountains of our Cascade forest.
Those activities really require a lot of aerobic action and at the same time produce a lot of perspiration. Losing precious minerals and salts in the process. Leading to achy muscles, nerve issues and exhaustion.
Time to grab the Gatorade! Oh wait... bad idea. Dye filled, processed sugar laden, nay high fructose corn syrup filled, junk. Seems like two steps backwards. Time for some natural electrolyte drinks and there are many to choose from.
The leaves are falling, the grapes are changing colors. The fall and Christmas decor is already in the stores. Wait! What? What is the date?!
While the official first day of fall is not until September 22nd (not too far off), down on the farm we are ready for this slower time of year to come. Summer is such a busy time on the farm planting and harvesting, trying to get our building project sealed up before the rains start and thankfully we don't have wood cutting on our list this year with the stash we have!
The local coffee shops are advertising pumpkin this and that, gingerbread is surely not far behind but you know what?! Its CHAI SEASON! While chai is the name for all kinds of tea in India, marsala chai is what us American's are familiar with. That spicy drink filled with cinnamon, cardamom, ginger and other spices that warms us up in the cooler months and makes us all comfy cozy.
Back to those coffee shops... most pumpkin spice latte's are flavored with synthetically flavored syrups and the sweetner in them is usually corn syrup. Far from a health food! Along with that is usually added a conventional milk. Today we are going to turn this unhealthy drink into something very healthy by just changing up what we use in the recipe.
Brewing the tea
First stop on our recipe journey is to get our tea brewed. Our preferred way to brew loose leaf tea is by using a french press. Typically used for coffee, french presses are very simple to use. Simply place the tea inside the press, pour your hot water over the top and place the lid/press on the top to steep. (Check out the demo in the video below)
We are excited that we were sent a new french press to review called the Espro P3. The most common french press is Bodum, which we have many of, because they are the easiest to find locally. We also have a couple of others that are lower end and we use all 5 of them every week when we brew tea for our farmer's market tea tastings.
I was super impressed with the Espro 3! Mostly for 3 reasons:
1.) The Double Filter System - Typically a french press has one filter that is made from metal mesh and some times the tiny tea bits will sneak through there. The Espro has a double filter system and catches all of the smallest particles making it great for any kind of tea. I'm sure it would work with fine ground coffee as well!
2.) Lock- This lovely lock keeps the glass carafe attached to the exterior case and handle which is great for when it comes time to hand wash. We have broken many carafe's because they fall out during washing and hit the sink then shatter. This lock ensures that won't happen during washing.
3.) Double Thick Glass- The carafe on this french press has double thick glass which helps keep the tea warmer longer and makes it more durable if dropped. Ask me how I know that its more durable if dropped ;) Yep, I dropped it! Not on purpose of course but I was super glad to see that it held up!
Check out the Espro in our video review below and also on Amazon.
Yes these are affiliate links, they provide our family farm with a wee bit of income so we can continue to bring you great recipes and local teas! There is no additional cost to you, if you decide to purchase. Cheers!
Espro P3 Standard
Espoo Stainless Steel
Large Espro Stainless Steel
Stainless Steel Frothing Pitcher
Mix'n it up
Now that we have covered the WHY we are drinking the chai and the how of brewing the tea lets get on to the actual recipe, because that's what you all are here for right ;) Bring on the tasty yummy (and healthy) Pumpkin Spice Bullet Proof Chai.
Pumpkin Spice Bullet Proof Chai Tea
4 - 6 TSP Loos Leaf Chai
( Recommended Decaf Chai, Cherry City Chai and/or Gingerbread Spice)
2 TSP Butter from Grass Fed Cows, melted (also known as grass fed butter, no - butter doesn't eat grass.... why do I say that, because the Farmer asked me.)
2 TBL Organic or Homegrown Pumpkin Puree
2 TSP Organic Coconut Oil, melted
2 TBL Organic Maple Syrup (the real stuff from trees!) or Local Raw Honey
1 C. Grassfed Milk (no milk doesn't eat grass... the cows, they eat the grass and make the milk... vs grain fed. That reason is a whoooole other post... leave a comment if you would like me to write it.)
1/4 tsp Pumpkin Pie Spice (or to taste, see recipe below)
1.) Steep the tea (any way you like) in 12-16 oz of almost boiling water for 7-10 minutes.
2.) Add the pumpkin, maple syrup, butter, coconut oil and steeped (strained) tea to a blender.
3.) Blend on high for about 2 minutes (we used the hot chocolate setting on the Blend Tec) until fats have emulsified and mixed together with the other ingredients.
4.) Warm up milk on stove so that its warm to the touch but not boiling and turn the heat off before the milk creates a skin over the top.
5.) Froth the milk using an electric frother or by placing it in a clean french press and pumping the press up and down until frothed.
6.) Pour pumpkin mix from blender into a mug, top with frothed milk and sprinkle on Pumpkin Pie Spice. Enjoy!!!
Pumpkin Pie Spice Mix
4 TBL Organic ground Cinnamon 1/2 TSP Organic ground Nutmeg
2 TSP Organic ground Ginger 1/2 TSP Organic ground Allspice
1/2 TSP Organic ground Cloves
Mix all the above spices together an store in an air tight container in a dark location. Should keep up to a year, if you don't use it by then!
Thanks for stopping by the farm and we will see you next week! Enjoy that cup of Pumpkin Spice Bullet Proof Chai!
P.S. Don't forget to grab our FREE Cooking with Tea E-book for more tea time treats!
Its officially summer and its starting to get mighty warm in the Pacific Northwest. It makes for happy plants but also thirsty and dehydrated gardeners as well as children. What to do? We thought we would share our favorite down on the farm recipe for a nutritious hydrating and flavorful cold drink that is sure to be a crowd pleaser.
The recipe we are sharing today is made with our Bloom'n Hibiscus Tea Blend which features the lovely and brilliant colored hibiscus flower. Most people will recognize this lovely flower as a Hawaiian flower and actually the yellow hibiscus is the state of Hawaii's flower. It has a bright petals usually five in number with a long protruding pistil typical of the tropical flower we all tend to think of. They come in many different colors but our tea today features the bright red variety.
The tropical flower this tea is based off of will make you think of the tropics when you drink it as the lemon balm and lemon grass compliment the fruitless of this flower with a citrus twist. Blackberry and Raspberry leaves give it some heartiness which is reminiscent of a light green tea and add a nutritious punch. Some have likened the taste of this hibiscus tea to 'Kool-aid' but better and I have yet to meet anyone who didn't like this tea - be they a tea drinker or not.
According to online sources hibiscus boosts the immune system, helps prevent cold and flu, assists in weight loss, helps to quench thirst, aids in blood pressure management, assists in reducing anxiety and depression, helps to lower levels of bad LDL, protects the liver against infections, assists with relief from cramps and menstrual symptoms as well as slowing down the growth of cancer.
Needless to say if you are looking for cool and refreshing and a crowd pleaser for young or old this is the drink to try!! Without further ado we will move on to the tutorial.
Bloom'n Hibiscus Cooler Recipe
What you will need:
1 1/2 gal. canning jar or glass equivalent
2 large tea filters (found at most grocery stores near the coffee filters)
1/2 oz Bloom'n Hibiscus Loose Leaf Tea (small bag from our farm store)
1/2 gallon filtered water
1 lid for canning jar
1/3 cup local raw honey (optional)
1/4 cup organic unbleached sugar (optional)
Lemon slices (optional)
Once you have your materials gathered together take the 1/2 oz of Bloom'n Hibiscus tea and place it inside each of the tea filters, putting half a bag of tea in one filter and the other half in the second filter.
Next fill your half gallon jar with clean filtered water (tap water will work but may give an off flavor). We love our Berky for filtering gunk out of water as well as fluoride.
Slide your tea bags in the jar hanging the lip of them over the edge of the jar so that the tea leaves cannot get out of the bag. Screw the lid on your jar so that it holds the tea bags in place.
Place your tea in a sunny spot outside, we tried ours in the entrance to the greenhouse... but the sun moved so we decided to move the tea....
It loved brewing on the front porch as much as we love the sun on the front porch too... this day we skipped the tea bags and dumped our blend right in the jar using a metal strainer to separate when finished. When your tea has brewed to the strength you prefer (for us about 4-6 hours depending on the sun) discard the tea filters and/or strain. Pour over ice for a refreshing drink. Though if you would like to make your tea up as we do it down on the farm we add about 1/3 of a cup of raw local honey and blend using a stick blender. We pour over ice and if we are getting really fancy with it we dip the rim of our cup in some liquid (water or lemon juice) and then dip the rim in some organic raw sugar for some sparkle. Add a slice of lemon to your cup and you have a very affordable summer time treat!
Thanks for visiting us down on the farm and if you really want to make this an affordable drink make sure to check out our larger size economy bags of tea for more tea and less on your pocket book in our farm store. See you next time!
The other day, it was a particularly warm day, we were inspired by one of our customers to make a cold version of our Peppermint Patty Tea. Until now it was most popular as a hot winter time tea because of the peppermint bringing thoughts of Christmas trees and candy canes. When our customer mentioned they drink it iced it put this winter tea into a new perspective. We decided to give it a try and the results were delicious! We hope you will agree.
BLENDED PEPEERMINT PATTY LATTE
1/4 cup Loose Leaf Peppermint Patty Tea
2 cups filtered water
2 cups ice
1/2 cup of milk (we used kefir for a probiotic kick!)
4-5 TBL raw honey (We love our local raw honey from Bee Line Honey Co.)
Add your 2 cups of filtered water to your tea kettle or pot and bring to a boil. Place your Loose Leaf Peppermint Patty Tea in a French Press (or use other steeping device) and add boiling water. Let steep for about 5-7 minutes. Once your tea has steeped strain into a blender (Vitamix or Blendtec works best). Add remaining ingredients starting with ice (it will help cool the tea down for blending) and blend until ice is chipped to your liking. Serve in a pretty glass, top with some cocoa nibs and fresh mint. Sip and enjoy!
Welcome to our Family Tea Farm!
Howdy from our farm to your home! It is said that the, "farm is the nursery of the family," and that "the family is the nursery of the nation." We hope you enjoy your visit to our blog as we share with you the happenings on our little "nursery". Thank you for following us on our journey and watching us GROW! Read more about our farm HERE.
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