My Tea Friend, Donna
MyTea Brew. She sells premium quality loose leaf teas and tea blends. Her company reaches into the community at local market places in the Toronto area. Donna is selling MyTea Brew teas at Humber Bay Shores Farmers Market until the end of the 2014 season. Drop by and tell I sent you!
Donna and I are fellow certified Tea Sommeliers and were among the first year graduates from the tea school at George Brown College. We laugh and share stories and recipes and ideas. Sometimes we meet up for a chat over tea with other tea school graduates.
Donna always has a little something special and today she was serving samples of Sweet Prickly Pear Herbal Tea. This exceptional tea is flavoured with green tea, bits of melon, papaya, pineapple and mango and has attractive yellow sunflower and blue cornflower blossoms. The tea can be served hot or cold. Mytea Brew has other teas that work at all levels of the senses. You can see and feel the tea leaves from the sampler. Smell it, taste it ! My fav is the little yogurt stars in Cinnamon Star!),
Now here is a great tip for iced tea: To keep the beverage cold for family, visitors or guests, make the tea in advance and freeze some in a reserved yogurt container or other mold. Pop out the frozen block of tea and add it to a large iced tea pitcher or serving urn like the one pictured here with Donna. The frozen iced tea will keep the beverage cold and will not dilute the drink. You can also freeze edible flowers, sliced fruit or herbs such as mint leaves into the ice block for an extra special presentation.
I find most teas make excellent iced tea brews. I prefer to use the cold steep method*(see below for instructions). Its fast and easy to prepare and ready to drink without the fuss of making ice cubes and ending up with a diluted drink. However, I find that more flavours develop with a hot tea brew and are more intense. So, you have to use a little bit more tea when using a cold brew. To freshen up a tea containing herbs, rub the leaves gently between your fingers before brewing. This will help release some of the essential oils and flavours during brewing. Crack open any cardamom seeds to get extra flavour or add an extra stick of cinnamon for more intense flavour. I use the cold steep method when using Japanese teas such sencha or flavoured sencha