Make your own Tea Blend

Last winter, my kids gave their teachers their own self-designed (okay, I helped. A lot.) winter spice tea blend.  It was easy and fun, and while not as cheap as I might have hoped, it was definitely cost-effective and made for some good times spent making it.  And man it was good.

I bought the black tea in bulk from our local Whole Foods; they have lots of different kinds, and honestly I just bought the cheapest since I knew we’d be dressing it up enough that the finer flavors of the tea would be fairly lost.  The spices I bought from mountainroseherbs.com, which sells really good organic and ethically harvested herbs and spices:

Winter Spice Tea Blend

  • 6 cups black tea
  • 1 cup cinnamon chips
  • 1 cup dried orange peels
  • ¾ cup dried ginger root
  • ½ cup cardamom seeds (hulled)

(I didn’t really know much about tea quantities, but I figured out that half a pound of loose tea is about 4 cups.)  We just mixed it all up in a bowl, smelling it often to decide if we had the proportions right. So that all got divided up into containers, each with a little muslin “bouquet garni” bag–which you can buy at the grocery store, they are fairly inexpensive, or if you wanted to you could sew your own–and instructions (about a heaping teaspon per cup of tea)…and it’s mucho yummy.  It was also fun to engage the kids in it–they helped with the experimental blends and sampled different versions of the tea before “we” (okay, it was me, but I won’t tell) settled on the final ratios.  And then we had fun measuring and sniffing and mixing, and pouring out into different containers.

I ran out of tea long before the rest of the spices, so by definition the remainder of the spices became mulling spice:

Mulling Spice

  • 1 cup cinnamon chips
  • 1 cup dried orange peels
  • ¾ cup dried ginger root
  • ½ cup cardamom seeds (hulled)
  • 1/4 cup whole cloves

You’ll notice we used the same basic proportions as for the tea, we just left the tea out and added some cloves.   And of course we kept a good supply of each to get us through the year ourselves–we didn’t give it all away!

Spent more than I meant to when all was said and done, but it was a) a learning experience, b) a morning of good and formational fun for me and my kids, and c) not exactly what everyone else will be giving their teachers!

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Posted on November 22, 2009, in Uncategorized and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.

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