Baked Apple Chai (formerly Spiced Apple) is potpourri for all the senses. It starts with the aroma of rich spices long associated with Thanksgiving and Christmas: cinnamon, chicory, cardamom and star anise. It filled the kitchen where it was steeping, and it made my mouth water.
Star anise is often used as an exotic spice in Indian and Chinese cooking. It is rich in antioxidants, and vitamins A and C, all of which help with coughs and colds, and a number of digestive issues.
The colour is a rich amber, like apple cider. The tea itself is quite chunky with dehydrated apple and figs, whole star anise, and cardamom pods. The flavour was sweet with deep tangy notes from the fruit, followed by the heat of cinnamon and clove, and the slightly bitter and herbaceous zing of the star anise.
Love is a fruit in season at all times, and within reach of every hand.
– Mother Theresa
This caffeine-free fruit infusion steeps for a minimum of 5 minutes in water that is 95C. If you tend to “eyeball” the amount of tea by judging the height of the leaves in your infuser, be generous. Since the tea is comprised of chunky pieces, it will fill the infuser quickly. I didn’t use enough at first and I was left with a weak apple tea with mild spice. Also, use an infuser that will allow the fruit to expand as it steeps in order to extract the most flavour! As with many teas that use cinnamon, you may have some residue settle at the bottom of your cup. I figure, that’s just part of the experience of loose tea.
Otherwise, this was a mildly spicy “hug in a mug”, perfect for a crisp Fall afternoon.
The day, water, sun, moon, night
– I do not have to purchase these things with money. – Plautus
Nothing but heaven itself is better than a friend who is really a friend. – Plautus
Persevere in virtue and diligence. – Plautus
This post is for Cee Neuner’s Black & White Photo Challenge : In/On the Water
Nature’s first green is gold,
Her hardest hue to hold.
Her early leaf’s a flower;
But only so an hour.
Then leaf subsides to leaf.
So Eden sank to grief,
So dawn goes down to day.
Nothing gold can stay.
To see more “Shine” photos, click here.
I had already prepared and scheduled this post, not knowing just how appropriate it would be today, in our lives. I came home from dance class last night to 2 very sad men. One of our guinea pigs was dying. Guinea and Rock Star are Little Guy’s first pets so there will be many tears in the next several weeks.
“There is a sacredness in tears. They are not the mark of weakness, but of power. They speak more eloquently than ten thousand tongues. They are the messengers of overwhelming grief, of deep contrition, and of unspeakable love.” – Washington Irving