Today I woke up to sun streaming in my bedroom window. Then I checked the temperature and my hopes of a balmy winter day were shattered when I saw it was a whopping -11 degrees Fahrenheit. –_– Today was the second day in a row with a predicted high below zero, which in my opinion calls for two things: 1) Hibernation, and 2) Lots and lots of tea.
A few days ago I discovered this wonderful website, Season with Spice, which highlights recipes heavy on spices and the health benefits from eating those spices. Some of their tea recipes have been calling out to me, and I thought today would be the perfect day to try a tea described as “Warm and Christmassy.”
I did some research on cloves, and was surprised at how nutrient dense they are! I think whole cloves are going to be added to my repertoire of add-ins to tea. I might try to sneak them into more baked goods as well….
Today’s song: “Please Don’t” by K.Will.
Before I get into the details of this tea, I just want to mention that for as much as I love desserts and sweet things, I DO NOT like sweet tea. My recipe does not call for any type of sweetener and the tea is fairly bitter. Just be warned, you may want to make adjustments to my recipe if you aren’t as fond of bitter teas as I am.
Also, I took some liberties and changed the original recipe, doubling the water (because I drink way more tea than the average person) and swapping out the black tea for oolong (because I am not a huge fan of black tea and never have any in my cupboard).
On to the recipe!
First, while the water was coming to a boil, I peeled the orange and got my cloves ready. Be careful while you are cutting the peel off the orange—the more pith you cut off the more bitter the tea will be. I would recommend cutting off the peel, then cutting off the pith when you are ready to eat the orange.
Then the bud or head of the clove is pinched off to create a powder, and added to the pot, along with the orange peel and the clove stems.
The heat is turned to low and after 15 minutes the tea leaves are added.
Soon the tea is strained and ready to drink! Don’t worry, I only used a small cup in the picture. In reality, I am sitting here drinking my tea out of a large mug ☺ No, I didn’t share the tea, but I am hibernating, remember?
Orange Clove Tea
4 cups of water
8 whole cloves
peel of one orange (as little of the pith as possible)
1 T oolong tea
1) Place water in a small pot and bring to a boil.
2) Pinch the bud at the end of the clove and crumble between your fingers into the water.
3) Add the orange peel and clove sticks to the water, turn to low heat and cover. Simmer lightly for about 15 minutes.
4) Turn off the heat and add the tea. Steep for about 5 minutes.
5) Strain the tea into a tea pot or a glass and serve. Add honey if desired.
• The tea was bitter, but very flavorful. I enjoy any kind of tea, and didn’t mind the bitter flavor, but if you dislike the taste I would refrain from adding the clove stems and/or add some honey or simple syrup.
• The tea is really fragrant and flavorful. Because the cloves and orange peel is boiled instead of simply being steeped in the water, the steam escapes and really makes the whole room smell wonderful!
• Maybe it is because I associate cloves with dishes which are eaten cozied up by a fireplace in the middle of a snowstorm, but I really felt like this tea warmed me up from the inside out.
• I think this would be a great tea to share with friends. If you make it before they come over, they would enter your house which would smell delicious with very little effort. In addition, the tea is fruity, spicy and comforting in a way that would be enjoyed by tea drinkers and non-tea drinkers alike.