Day 20: Apple Custard

Hello readers!

Today is Brooke’s birthday!!! Hurray! And as is customary on someone’s birthday (?) we will be doing a birthday lunch, a climbing session, and a little jazz to top it all off. Oh and of course a tea blog. So let’s get this birthday started!

Stacey: You do the honours, birthday girl!
Brooke: Oh boy! Apple custard!
Stacey: How perfect! It’s like they knew it was your birthday.
Brooke: Mmm it smells like…trail mix? And raisins. Is that chamomile in there, too?
Stacey: Oh no! I guess I’ll just have a sip. 😦

Tea: Apple Custard

Description: We hope you’re sitting down. Because we’re about to make a pretty bold claim. This might just be the most decadently creamy blend we’ve ever tasted. Seriously. It’s almost crazy how much it tastes like a warm and comforting custard or pudding. It blends sweet apples, golden raisins and honey-scented chamomile with a rich and creamy hint of vanilla. Go ahead, indulge. With this in your cupboard, who needs dessert?

Ingredients: Apples, golden raisins, coriander, chamomile, natural and artificial vanilla flavouring

Steeping Instructions: 1.25 tsp, 96°C, 4-7 minutes

Brooke: It smells like a caramel apple…

*sip*

Brooke: …and it tastes like a faint apple cream pie.
André: It’s got a creaminess to it like yesterday’s cream of earl grey.
Brooke: It’s not at all bitter, I would say it’s more hollow than yesterday’s tea.
André: Mmm, very enjoyable.
Stacey: Darn chamomile.
Brooke: The more I drink it, the more it tastes like forever nuts.
Stacey: Sure smells like apple custard.
André: It tastes like awesome. I really do love this one.
Stacey: I guess I’ll have a small sip.
André: Does it taste like scratchy?
Stacey: Thankfully no, hmm, it’s very light. Not as much flavour as I thought it would be.
Brooke: It’s my birthday!

Tea vibes:

For our final thoughts, we used Stacey’s voice-to-text feature on her phone with wonderful results:

André: Fantasy has a white creamy taste. You and I really enjoy it at all, so I will be free. I give it out of 10.

Brooke: This 1 is basically like forever nuts, Ernie. Except for the creepy pink parrot, so I like it. Ok, bye. I wanna buy it direct. TV 7 aberdeen.

Stacey: My throat is scratchy and I don’t like Kayla mail. 4 on demand. Well I’m in my throat scratchy, you’re right phone on time for that.

Well folks, that’s a wrap. We’re off to a birthday lunch now that Brooke has open some gifts. Have a wonderful and custard-filled day!

Until next tea,
Stacey and Brooke (and André)

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Harry the face hugger tries to give Brooke a birthday hug.

 

Day 11: Mother’s Little Helper

While the rest of the city was blanketed in snow this morning, the tea connoisseurs sat in their overly-cozy apartment and excitedly started their day off right: with a hot cup of tea!

Brooke: I’m going to open door 11…no wait you should, I punched 10 out yesterday and that freaked you out. Your turn!
Stacey: And… it’s Mother’s Little Helper! Aw, unfortunately I can’t have this one because I’m allergic to ragweed and chamomile is part of that family.
Brooke: Aw, alright Andre, you’re up!
Andre:But this has chamomile! I’m going to fall asleep on the bus!
Brooke: Drink up, me hearty!

Tea: Mother’s Little Helper

Description:Need a little relaxation? Try running for the shelter of this mother’s little helper. It’s got organic valerian (aka “nature’s Valium”) to take the edge off your 24/7 reality. Plus there’s chamomile, peppermint and lemongrass for an added dose of tranquility. And pretty blue cornflowers just to make you happy. One sip and you’ll feel like you’ve spent the day at a spa.

Ingredients: peppermint, lemongrass, hibiscus, rosehips, chamomile, valerian root, cornflowers, peppermint flavouring

Steeping Instructions: 1.25tsp, 96C, 4-7 minutes

Brooke: Oooh it’s pink again! That’s the third tea this month that’s been a rosy colour!
Andre:Mmm, I smell mint.
Brooke: Smart man, that’s the main ingredient!
Andre:Oh, look at me!
Brooke: Yes, yes. Drink!

*Sip*

Andre: Ow, all I taste is hot!
Brooke: Oops.
Andre: Wait, yes, mmmm there’s the mint. The chamomile is there but the cooling effect of the mint is predominant in this one.

Stacey took a quick sip to add her two cents.

Stacey: Hm. Chamomile is weird to have in morning.
Brooke: The things we do for our readers, eh Stace?
Andre: You know, I actually feel less sleepy now!
Brooke: Ugh, all I smell is the lemongrass….. *Sip* oh, wait, yay, the mint protects me! What a great combination of flavours yet again!
Andre: Agreed. Very nice.
Brooke: The mint rounds out the lemongrass and the chamomile so well, it really makes for a perfect evening tea. Take another sip!
Andre: Hooray! I live sips!

Tea Vibes:

Brooke and Andre used Brooke’s voice-speech tool on her tablet, and their final thoughts were detected as:

Andre: I think this TV has a nice floral and sweet flavour due to the lemon grass fire. It has a nice minty finish. I give this to ten ten I see XX.

Brooke: This is the first lemongrass tea I’ve ever had that actually tastes decent and it’s because the mint properly mixes with the lemongrass and makes for a delicious finish! I don’t think I would have again, but it gets the 710.

I guess Brooke’s voice-type feature is a bit better than Stacey’s?

Ah well, another start to another beautiful day here in the capital. Get your work done and get your teas brewing, folks. It’s only 13 days until Christmas!

Until next tea,

Brooke and Stacey (and Andre)

https://i2.wp.com/www.pasadenanow.com/main/wp-content/uploads/2012/09/710.png

Give ‘er the ol’ 710, doc.

Day 11: Mother’s Little Helper

Hi readers!

Happy Day #11 of 24 Days of Tea! My mother was visiting recently and when we decided to review a tea together; when we pulled this one out- it was perfect! We had just made an asparagus and potato salad and I was a little helper in the kitchen while she did all the hard stuff. Heeeere we go! : )

Tea: Mother’s Little Helper

Mother's Little Helper (organic) from DAVIDsTEA

Description: The Great Escape

Need a little relaxation? Try running for the shelter of this mother’s little helper. It’s got organic valerian (aka “nature’s Valium”) to take the edge off your 24/7 reality. Plus there’s chamomile, peppermint and lemongrass for an added dose of tranquility. And pretty blue cornflowers just to make you happy. One sip and you’ll feel like you’ve spent the day at a spa.

Tea ingredients: Organic: peppermint, lemongrass, rosehips, Fair Trade Certified hibiscus, chamomile flowers, valerian root, cornflowers. With natural peppermint flavouring.

Tea Instructions: 1.5 tsp, 98°C, 4-7 min.

Stacey: Oh no! There’s chamomile? I shouldn’t drink it. I will sniff it.

Brooke: This smell reminds me a lot of their Detox tea, the hibiscus and lemongrass scents especially.

Stacey: *sniff* It has a VERY big floral scent, because of the ragweed, I mean…chamomile.

Brooke: Mom, what do you think it smells like?

Cathy: …Socks?

Brooke: Oh!

Cathy: It’s not like Jingle Bells with all that other stuff..

Brooke: She means White Chocolate Frost

Cathy: Why do I come for a visit just to be teased?

Brooke: Don’t worry Mom, we’re just laughing AT you!

Cathy: Oh, good.

Stacey: It’s kind of like a weird pink… yellowy.. Am I allowed to say pukey colour?

Brooke: This is boding well…

*sip*

Cathy: Oh, you know, it tastes much better than it smells! I like the peppermint. It’s not bad- I don’t feel the need to sweeten it.

Brooke: Oh wow, yes, this IS good! Not as harsh as Detox.

Cathy: It still SMELLS like socks, though. Maybe lemongrass to me smells like socks?

Brooke: I like the lemon and mint mix, it’s so soft.

Cathy: Is that white thing on the floor a skull?

Brooke: We’re still transitioning from Halloween!

Cathy: So that’s why the scarecrow has a Santa hat on?

Stacey: It’s a work in progress.

Tea vibes:

Cathy: I like a tea that I don’t have to add anything extra to prepare it. I will definitely drink it again- the peppermint is fun! I’m going to lay down for a nap… 4/5

Brooke: The peppermint is so nice and airy! The chamomile is soothing and the flavours didn’t assault my senses. Don’t be turned off by the smell (of socks?), just dip in and enjoy! 4/5

Stacey: *Achoo!*

Cathy: Zzzzzz.

Shhh! Until next tea,

Brooke and Stacey (and Cathy)

Sleeping after steeping.

Warming Chamomile

Hello tea enthusiasts!

After a busy weekend of boxing to raise money for CHEO and receiving my Master’s degree, I was ready for a little R&R and, of course, some tea. On Sunday evening Brooke suggested we break out nourishtea’s Warming Chamomile and bake some apple scones; I was more than happy to oblige. After a few hiccups with baking (soy milk instead of milk, not enough butter, Brooke wanting to put in apple even though she is allergic [really, Brooke?]), we were ready to eat…er, drink!

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Tea Description: This wonderful chamomile originates from the land of the pyramids. Authentic Egyptian chamomile has been used for centuries to help relax the mind, relieve stress and bring tranquility. We have selected only the finest chamomile flowers for our tins for the most flavor, fragrance and beauty (all necessary for the perfect cup of chamomile). We invite you to stop what you’re doing… turn of your iphone or blackberry, settle into a good book, and enjoy a cup of warming chamomile. It’s like no other. (Just pop open this tin and experience the overpowering fragrance of these enormous flowers…).

Stacey: Ooooh I like these scones.
Brooke: Can we go for a walk after this?
Stacey: Yes, Brooke, I haven’t forgotten. (She had asked me earlier).
Brooke: The scones are kind of bland and uncooked. I liked it when we rolled them out better: 4/10 would not bake again. I think I’ll go back to my recipe. Oh sorry, I keep eating your scone.
Stacey: Why are you still eating them if you think they are bad?
Brooke: Oh. … I don’t have an answer for that.
Stacey: Well, this certainly smells like chamomile.

*Sip*

Brooke: Stacey, what are you doing?
Stacey: I was pretending to put on a blanket.
Brooke: It just looked like a dance. A Stacey dance. Were you putting on the blanket like this?
Stacey: So the tea!
Brooke: It’s niceeee. It’s beautiful. Just soft and delicate. Light airy. Ducks: flying in the wind.  Wait scratch that last bit. I love how crystal clear the tea is. It’s like you’re drinking flowers, which you essentially are. What do you think Stacey?
Stacey: It’s quite soothing.
Brooke: I really like it. I was worried because often chamomile reminds me of a “sick tea”. But it is a nice after dinner tea. Also in first year, I thought it was called Camembert tea.
Stacey: Oh, like the cheese?
Brooke: I’m a bit of a dork.
Stacey: I agree that it’s an end of the day tea. It would go really well with a thunderstorm and a good book. It’s really crisp and soothing.
Brooke: The aroma is just so delicate.
Stacey: Like you are in a field of flowers. It’s not sweet. It’s just—
Brooke: Yeah, I like that!
Stacey: …

Tea Vibes:

Brooke: Hands down my favourite chamomile tea to date. Light, airy, doesn’t weigh you down. It’s so crisp and clear. It makes a great end of your day tea. We’ll be sharing this with our tea loving pals (Lana, MK, looking at you!) very soon. 8.5/10

Stacey: Secretly I was worried about drinking this tea because I’ve had other versions of chamomile that have not agreed with my seasonal allergies. While my throat is a little scratchy, the flavour tea more than made up for it. This is a wonderful herbal that does not have any extra flavours to it. Simply yummy! 8/10

Final Thoughts

Apparently people who are allergic to ragweed shouldn’t drink chamomile tea…whoops! But hey, Brooke had apple and didn’t die either. I’d say that’s a successful tea break.

Until next tea,
Stacey and Brooke

Ducks: flying in the wind.

Sweet Dreams

Hi tea lovers!

It’s Brooke again. As you may have noticed, we usually switch it up with every post… but when Stacey came in after skating tonight she was practically sleep-walking. I knew just the tea so I hurried to put on the kettle before she floated off into dreamland. She obliged, as long as I took the reigns on this one. It’s going to be a short post but you’ll know if this sleepy tea is for you by the end of it.

sweet dreams

Tea: Organic Sweet Dreams

DAVIDsTEA description: Getting enough sleep is the key to everything. You’ll have more energy. You’ll have more patience. Your jokes will be funnier. Everyone will love you. Which is where Sweet Dreams comes in. A delicious blend of sleep-inducing chamomile, lemongrass, hibiscus, licorice, lemon, orange and rose petals, it has everything you need to drift off into dreamland – and stay there all night long.

Ingredients: Chamomile flowers, lemongrass, fennel seeds, hibiscus flowers, lemon peel, orange peel, licorice root, lemon myrtle, rose petals.

I eagerly tossed the boiling water into our mugs, each with 1.5tsp of the loose leaf and I brought Stacey to the family room. The tea was a light orange and gold and it smelled strongly of the chamomile flowers. Stacey was drooling a bit (maybe).

Stacey: This is just sleepiness… in a… cup. I’m nervous.. I think I’m allergic to chamomile.

Brooke: But Checkmate had chamomile in it. You’ll be fine!

Stacey: But this is different. The things at the top are really unnerving. They’re weird.

The infuser hadn’t caught all the debris and some smaller bits remained, much to the dismay of sleepy Stacey.

*sip*

Stacey: Mmmm. I have an image!

Brooke: Oh?

Stacey: We haven’t done imagery in a while. I feel like I’m on a cloud.

…Before I could even get a word in, Stacey giggles. Then she giggles because she was giggling. Cut to two minutes later, Stacey is still silently laughing at her own “cloud imagery”. I’m just… sitting here.

Stacey: Brooke, make the laughing stop.

Brooke: Okay, what in the, Stacey, you’re crying.

Stacey: I’m tired!! I don’t know why I’m laughing! What do you think of the tea, Brooke?

Brooke: I haven’t even sipped it yet!

Stacey: I’m sorry, I was premature there. Go ahead.

*sip*

Brooke: …Yep. Definitely a cloud! Well done on the imagery, sleepy Stace.

Stacey: Yeah! See? I’m not crazy.

Brooke: Alright, alright. You know, this tea mixture is like a more hollow version of a straight up chamomile, which a good thing. It doesn’t hit you as hard, I find.

Stacey: And there’s more depth to it. There’s more to it than just chamomile.

Brooke: It really makes me think of Detox though. Without the olive, of course.

Stacey: Still don’t get that. Ooh! I sneezed! See, totally allergic!

Brooke: I have a very very small hint of black licorice. VERY small. Wait, ingredients? Hooray! Fennel seeds! And licorice root, too! I totally tasted those, what do I win?

Stacey: Yeah, there’s… yeah!

Brooke: Seriously you need to go to bed. You’re helping no one.

Tea Vibes:

Stacey: Uhhhmm. … … …It warms you in more than a hot liquid way… It’s like you’re wrapped in a blanket. Very comforting… I really like the taste… A good soothing tea. I don’t think I’d buy it, I’m not a big chamomile fan… I don’t really do the sleepy time teas, but it stands on its own as a good one. Zzzzzz 7/10

Brooke: I’m also not a huge fan of chamomile but I’d rather drink this than a regular chamomile blend. The fennel is a really nice hint, it coats the throat but doesn’t attack the flavours and bowl them over. I don’t really taste the lemon nor the orange but I do sense the citrus undertones. I like it, but I also agree we don’t need to buy it any time soon. 7/10

Final thoughts:

Stacey: I’m tired and want to go to bed.

Oops! Sweet dreams : )

Until next tea,

Brooke and snoozin’ Stacey

sleepy cat (cat,sleepy,cute,funny,adorable)

Checkmate

Hello again readers,

Well, after a delicious meal of maple salmon and roasted potatoes (we promise we’re not a couple… even though technically we *are* common-law), Stacey and I were feeling like a tasty tea to finish off our day. We popped open tea #16 and after retrieving it from the floor (they’re slippery!), we were both thrilled with what we picked up. Checkmate! Stacey had been eyeing this once since we bought the set over two months ago, so she was pretty excited. Oh boy.

Checkmate from DAVIDsTEA

Tea: Checkmate

DAVIDsTEA Tea Description: Game on!

This tea isn’t like a chess game of black versus white, it’s black and white working together. When you mix white Bai Mu Dan with black tea, coconut and chamomile flowers, it creates a rich, satisfying, chocolate flavour. You’ll swear you’re drinking a cup of hot cocoa, even though there’s no chocolate in the blend. It’s so delicious it’ll hold any king or queen in check – now that’s a winning move any way you look at it.

Ingredients: White tea, black tea, coconut, Roman chamomile flowers.

This tea… smelled delicious. We steeped 1.25tsp for 4 minutes in 98°C water and then let our teas cool. By the time they were drinkable, though, I realized I was going to be late for my improvised comedy practice so we improvised (HAH!) and poured our brews into our trusty thermoses for later.

When I got back, it was after 10PM and Stacey was a little hesitant to do the review.

Stacey: No we can’t, the caffeine!

Brooke: *Sip*. Oooh. Oh but it’s SOO good, Stacey.

Stacey: I.. I just.. *sip*

She seemed confused.

Brooke: No? You disagree? You don’t like it?

Stacey: I don’t know, I’ve just never had a tea like this before. I’m trying to figure out what it is.

Brooke: Ah but it’s got such a light nice coconut vibe. I’m digging it.

Stacey: Are there figgs in this? It just reminds me of DAVIDsTEA Apres Ski.

Brooke: I always wondered why white teas were way more expensive than blacks and greens…

Stacey: They do something different with the leaf!

Educational break! White teas are actually made with the bud of Camellia sinensis along with the leaves. The plant withers in natural light, then gets plucked and lightly processed. This stops any further oxidation of the plants tissues. Since there’s such a small amount of processing, white tea contains many more nutrients than its black or green counterparts. It’s all very special. Hence the price.

Stacey: You know, I wouldn’t say there is a hot chocolate taste, nor even a cocoa taste, but there’s a hint of SOMETHING chocolatey. Hmm.. I like it!

Brooke: I just get the balmy feeling of coconut and I love it.

Stacey: I just don’t GET it!

At this point it was late and Stacey was nervous to continue for fear of sleeplessness in the night [Stacey: Hey, it’s a thing, Brooke!]. Unfortunately, our busy lives prevented us from enjoying our brews together the following day  so instead, following a trip to Toronto for me and a weekend of skating on the canal for Stacey, we sat down to have one last cup each to finish it all up. We always make time for tea. And each other. Aw.

Tea Vibes:

Stacey: You know, I would describe this tea as yin yang:  two completely opposite flavours that work well together. On Friday, I brought my thermos to work and was very sad when it was empty. I’m happy we got to have another. : ) I totally get the image of a chess board too. That’s what they were going for with the black and white tea, I bet. I really like it- what a neat mix! I want to buy this one next. 9/10

Brooke: You seem to have really taken liken for it, haven’t you? The coconut flavour is delicious but it’s the only aspect that I really do taste. It’s not too wild- I get how you could fall in love with it. The flavour of chocolate is very faint but the chamomile flowers are an excellent touch. This is most definitely a nice dessert tea to have after a big meal. Yum! 7.5/10

We’ll have to see if this winds up in our cabinet, especially with all our new Nourish Tea loot we recently aquired. In any case, it was well received all around. Maybe you should try it?

[Stacey: my vote is yes! MmmMmm]

Until next tea,

Brooke and Stacey

Knight to E5, baby Ron.