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Written by Annabel Wyatt
During the summer, one of my favorite things to do is drink lovely summer cocktails out in the garden with friends or as I’m working. I love mixing together different fruit juices (sometimes adding a splash of Gin or Pims for the evening) and having a ruddy good time of it. This year however, I am still on my sugar kick extravaganza and am not going to let a thing like, errrrrm, the sun! Wreck my sugar free living.
As a compromise to my juice cravings, I’ve developed quite a substantial collection of fruity and herbal teas, I know guys, I’m wild! I thought I’d also try and be a little more creative with my teas and make some blends myself and maybe add some healthy benefits too, haha two birds with one stone. Summer refreshment and a health kick at the same time… multi-tasking, I’ve got you covered!
-Getting the basics, for the base of your tea, all you really need are a box of loose leaf black, green or white tea. These act as a canvas to add flavors to and bulk out your blends making the ingredients go further. Try a black tea like Ceylon which is mild in flavor, green tea for antioxidant benefits which all work well with other ingredients too. I’d suggest possibly saving black teas for wintry, spicy or fuller flavored drinks <links>.
– Adding your own flavors, for summer time tea drinks, I like to use things like flower petals (think dandelion, nettle and rose) to green or white tea to infuse more of their delicate flavors. Try drying out berries and fruit, dicing finely and sprinkling a few table spoons over your tea blends to add fruitiness. Or ever add some to your cups of tea to decorate further for guests! I also like dried coconut shavings, apple peels and citrus zests to add a summer kick. Check this site out for more ideas!
– Finally, you can easily buy your own empty tea bags from places like Ebay, whole food shops and supermarkets. Fill them up with your own concoctions and keep them in Tupperware for freshness. Try making your own little bespoke labels with your recipes on them as they make lovely gifts for friends (put them in an old jam jar with some ribbon around and hey presto!) I also have big love for my tea infuser tea pot (how old am I?) which sits on my desk as I work and gets topped up throughout the day. Having a tea pot really takes the faff out of making tea as you have so many cups ready to go right there
If looking to get into making your own tea or even growing it, take a look at the book ‘Home Grown Tea’ by Cassie Liversidge. She’s working with schools in East London to educate kids on the value of growing your own produce, being healthier and environmentally sound. Check out her website for more information!