Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Tarting Up Tea

Today was my first day setting the garden to rights.  I was very pleased to find that almost all of the lavender survived and will be lovely in another month or so.  I also found that as much as I tried, there is still some orange mint in the front bed.  I am going to move it as it simply isn't polite, but likes to take over.  Which leads me to tarting up tea.  I'm not a great fan of flavored teas, but I love to experiment.

If you like lavender you can make some simple syrup flavored with it for your summer iced teas.  Just heat up 1 cup sugar, 1 cup water and 4 Tablespoons fresh or 2 Tablespoons dried lavender buds, stirring until the sugar dissolves.  Cool and strain, keep in the fridge for 2+ weeks.  You can do that with other herbs as well, such as the mints or lemon thyme.  If you don't like sweeteners, just stick a sprig or two in the pot as it brews.  I am very partial to orange mint but this year I am going to try some of the milder ones, like spearmint and apple mint.  I have tried rosemary, but it is much too strong.  Organic dried rosebuds would be lovely as well.

Something else you can do either for a tea punch or ice cubes for ice tea is to freeze edible flowers, either in a ring or the cubes.  Make sure they are edible and unsprayed.  I am thinking of Johnny jump-ups, pansies, violets, rose buds, calendula flowers.  Nasturiums are edible as well, although they can be peppery.  They do come in lovely colors, however.  You could also dry these flowers and add them to your dry tea leaves.

I tried using old tea to cover seeds started in the house - it did not work, they just matted together and grew fuzz.  However, they do well mixed with grass and clover seed to overseed your lawn.  I am determined to have more clover in my lawn.  It smells divine.

I did not try a new tea today.  I was tired and just had my wonderful S. D. Bell's and was so happy to be able to taste it with no other icky tastes!

A longer and somewhat cock-eyed view of Karl's Kirche in Vienna.  It's just such a cool building.


Kev Woodward said...

Hi Marlena, we have just started on our garden too, sadly, work is getting in the way. I am writing to ask if you would be interested in a link up with my tea blog at http://greenandoolong.blogspot.com?

Steph said...

I love this title! I had an entirely different picture in mind - a fruit tart sassily serving tea. ;-)

Marlena said...

Hi Kev - I'd love to link - I took so long to get back to you because I was going in and out of hospital and somehow, this wasn't on my mind!