A perfect day for tea! The wind has been screaming and cursing all night and all day. It's been snowing off and on, usually not too hard, but we did have a 15 minute white-out. That is when you cannot see more than a foot or so in any direction, if you're lucky and the entire world is white. So, it is a good time to be inside and drinking "the cup that cheers..."
I am again comparing two teas I got in a swap. They are both teabags, both individually wrapped, both English Breakfast. The first is from Ahmad Tea, which I brewed for 3 minutes, per instructions. Generally I only do teabags for 2 minutes, because the tea is so fine. It was very dark and malty smelling - Aha, Assam. Needless to say, it was quite strong, but very smooth. It was straightforwardly an Assam, for sure and had no nuances, but this is breakfast tea and for those of us who are morning challanged, it is just fine. Needless to say, it was good with milk in it.
The second was Twinings, also a 3 minute brew, and was somewhat reddish, although equally dark as Ahmads. It smelled like birch bark or birch beer, so I suspect it was a blend of teas, surely some Keemun in there. It had a bit of a peppery taste with a hint of malt. It was a bit astringent, as well, but not nasty.
Twinings had more going on in terms of nuance, but both were tasty and would certainly go well on a morning when you can't face brewing a pot. My first choice remains PG Tips, however.
I have had my first French macaroon, at the food concession of an indoor flea market, no less. I now see why there is so much fuss over them. Really excellent treat. Yesterday I found a cookbook for them for only $3, so I am going to try my hand at making some of my own.