First and foremost, I want to thank the Fairfield Free Public Library for hosting me this past Thursday! It was another wonderful group with some insightful guests. Unfortunately, I did arrive a little late but everyone was very gracious, gave me ample time to set up, and I think we had a lovely conversation. I got to hear from people who brewed tea in an Indian fashion – strong with milk – people who had Kombucha tea (which they said was delicious), and others who absolutely hated tea but was willing to give it a try (he said he would always be a coffee drinker at heart, but I am glad he at least gave it a shot!). We talked about the affect that the staple and glue has on a cuppa (while I found no evidence swaying either way, try and use loose tea anyway) and how green tea can assist with weight loss.
Second, I have another Tea Love talk coming up!
Yes, West Milford Township Library asked me to return, but this time, for a children’s talk. I will be hosting an afternoon tea with all the boys and girls (fancy dress is required!), teaching them about the afternoon tea history, having a relay race, a mini fashion show where they can show off their tea cups, and breaking for lunch and a book. Come on out, it’s bound to be a lot of fun! And Tea Love will be giving out prizes at the event :-)
Finally, onto a fun topic that I wrote about for the Riverdale, New Jersey newsletter – dying Easter eggs using tea.
Everyone knows that tea stains. Teeth whitening commercials always address those pesky coffee and tea stains on your teeth that will be magically removed with one application of their fine product. Clothing commercials feature red wine, coffee, and split tea mugs dashed across lily-white table clothes, only to be removed with the power of baking soda, peroxide, and awesome stain-fighting power. But, with Easter just around the corner, children and adults alike can use the staining power of tea to make their own tea-infused eggs.
You can dye the eggs with one of two methods – the standard dip method where, rather than use food coloring tablets, you would use tea, or a method where you can give the eggs a marbled look.
To use the standard sip method which will produce an egg similar to your other Easter eggs, take your eggs and put them in a mixture of a tablespoon of vinegar, a cup of water, and a very strong-colored tea such as a raspberry herbal. Allow it to soak refrigerated for a minimum of two hours, though the longer you leave the egg in the tea, the stronger the color will be. When you take the eggs out and start eating them, you should get a slight taste of tea with each bite.
For a different look, you can also try the tea egg method.
According to blogger Ellen Easton, writer of Tea Travels, the tea eggs, also called marbled eggs due to the marbled look they get when they are shelled, are sold in Asia as tasty snacks or appetizers. One can often find them on the streets being sold by vendors, though you can also find it in the restaurants and even convenience stores as well.
According to blog Appetite for China, to create these, hard boil the eggs prior to dying. When the eggs are cool enough to handle, gently crack the eggs either by rolling them in a paper towel or by tapping them all over the shell with a spoon. You want to be careful not to break any of the shell off the egg so that you get the cracks and lines but not a huge splotch of color. Put the eggs back into the water and add two tea bags of black tea, ½ cup soy sauce, 1 tablespoon of light brown sugar, 2 pieces of star anise, 1 cinnamon stick, 1 teaspoon of cracked black pepper, and 2 to 3 strips of dried mandarin peel. Cover the eggs by an inch, then bring the water to a boil. Lower the heat then to a bare simmer, and allow the eggs to stay for at least one to two hours or until you reach the desired flavor and color.
When you are ready to serve, get the camera and watch the pleasant surprised faces as people get to see your lovely creations.