Geranium-Lychee Iced Tea

As promised, my recipe for a most refreshing and exotic iced tea that will help you cool off in this unusual heat wave that swept British Columbia this July. We consider anything above 10 celsius is "beautiful day" and anything around room temperature as "hot". So you can imagine we are not quite set up for 30 celsius and over (today is expected to go as high as 32!).
Using a high quality tea is key to the success of this tea. I prefer to use Inner Alchemy's Moonbeam Glory, which is quite fancy and a beautiful tea on its own rights; besides the delicious lychee, it also has dried wild blueberries in it and natural flavour of black currants, wild blueberries and blackberries. But if you can also use a high quality rose or lychee congou (it is not easy to come across the real thing but well worth the search).

2 tsp. Lychee or Rose Congou
1 Liter boiling water
3 tsp. sugar (optional)
1 Liter lychee juice (I use Dewlands' Litchi juice, which is sweetened only with white grape juice and is yummy!)
2 Freshly picked pelargonium (geranium) leaves. Rose geranium or lemon-scented geranium is the best

Bring water to a boil. Steep the tea leaves for 5 minutes. Sweeten with sugar if desired and bring to room temperature. Add the lytchee juice. Rub the geranium leaves slightly between your palms to release their aroma and add to the juice and tea. Refrigerate and serve with plenty of ice for a cooling and energizing summer drink. I took this to the beach yesterday in a thermos with lots of ice and it was fantastic!

Tropical Tea Party - The Beverages

Although a tea party, the beverages were not restricted to tea only. Here is what we had:
The Charisma house blend of jasmine green tea, osmanthus blossoms and freshly picked herb from my patio - spearmint, lemon verbena and lemongrass!

Magnolia Oolong Tea - one of my favourites, from Murchie's.

Iced tea - of Lychee Black Tea (I used Inner Alchemy's Moonbeam Glory, which also is flavoured with other berries), only slightly sweetened and mixed with lychee juice and a couple of fresh lemon-geranium-leaves (also from my patio!). A full recipe will be posted here at a later date.

Coconut Milk + Lychee Juice was another refreshing drink, although without any tea involved.

And of course - tea tasting from my line of teas.

Morrocan Ice Tea

Ice Tea, originally uploaded by Ayala Moriel.

A refreshing way to get just a little energetic boost is to prepare your own ice tea concentrate. It makes a great cooling beverage and your guests will be grateful to be greeted that way after they made their way to you in the heat.

1/2 Liter boiling water
2 tsp. Darjeeling tea
2-4 Tbs. raw cane sugar (depending on how sweet you'd like your ice tea)
6 sprigs of fresh spearmint, rinsed and dried (use a lettuce drier or let to drip dry on a towel)
Cold water
Ice cubes

For the
Steep the tea leaves in the water for 5 minutes. Add sugar, stir well and add 4 sprigs of fresh spearmint. Let cool and remove the spearmint sprigs before storing in the refrigerator.

To prepare the ice tea:
In a large glass pitcher, mix together half of the ice tea concentrate and fill the rest with cold water and ice cubes. Stir well and add a few fresh spearmint leaves before serving.

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