Tag Archives: Green tea

Green Jasmine truffles

21 Feb

The highlight of this month’s Tea and Chocolate Workshop at Lahloo Pantry will be the preparation of these chocolate truffles, infused with the delicate flavour of Green Jasmine. A fabulous homemade gift or a luxurious treat to enjoy when you fancy something sweet, satisfying and uplifting. Here’s our recipe!

Green Jasmine truffle

Green Jasmine truffles

Ingredients (for about 40 truffles)

  • 250g dark chocolate
  • 280ml heavy cream
  • 50g butter
  • 2-3 tbsp Lahloo Green Jasmine
  • 3 tbsp cocoa powder (for the coating)

Heat the cream in a pan and bring to the boil. Remove from heat, add the tea and let it infuse for 15 minutes. Strain.

Melt the chocolate and the butter in a bain-Marie and strain the cream into the mixture. Whisk well until combined. Pour into a stainless still bowl and refrigerate for two hours.

Place 1 teaspoon of the truffle mixture into the palm of your hand, rolling it into a ball. Place each truffle on a lined baking tray and repeat the process. Chill the truffles until firm.

Once the truffles are firm, coat them with the cocoa powder (if you like them sweeter, add some brown sugar to the cocoa powder and mix well) and leave them to harden.

Our tip: Bring truffles to room temperature just before serving.

Tea Heroes 2012 – the results!

9 Jan

A few weeks ago we asked you to help us choose the Tea Heroes of 2012! First of all, we want to thank you all for your responses. We’ve already contacted the winner of a Tea Discovery tea taster set, so congratulations! Now it’s time to share the results! Hopefully this will help you discover a new tea -or maybe confirm that you were right about your favourites!

teas

OPULENT BLACK ………………….. Spice Chai (32.4%)

Beating Bristol Brew by just one vote, the invigorating and comforting Spice Chai gets to the top of your trusted black teas!

INTRIGUING OOLONG …………… Orchid (36.1%)

This oolong is so stunning that even thieves love it! Our whole consignment of Orchid was stolen and we’re currently trying to source an alternative! True story. Too much Orchid love.

GALVANISING GREEN …………. Matcha (28.6%)

The mighty Matcha gets your vote, followed closely by Green Jasmine. Once you try Matcha there’s no turning back!

ALLURING WHITE …………….. White Peony (30.6%)

This seemed to be a difficult choice! White Peony, Snow Jewel and White Whisper got nearly the same number of votes.

HERBAL THERAPY…………….. Peppermint (28.6%)

The trusted English favourite beats the exotic Mulberry by just one vote!

 

Do you agree with the results?

Ranting about why green tea is not bitter at Abergavenny Food Festival, September 2012

3 Oct

Are you a green tea hater?

13 Sep

So you think you hate green tea? Well, you’re not alone. We’ve met lots of people who had the same problem. Most of them would say “eurgh, it’s horribly bitter”. Even among the Lahloo Pantry staff there are a few examples of former green tea haters! Before they started, many of them told us they loved blacks, herbals and whites, but then whispered timidly that they didn’t really enjoy greens… Everybody likes different things, and for us it wasn’t a requisite to love every kind of tea, so no interviews were cancelled, if that’s what you were thinking…

But during their tea training, they all had the chance to try the over thirty Lahloo varieties… and, oh, surprise! All of them ended up adoring at least one of our green teas, whether it’s Nokcha (South Korean, biscuity and moreish), Genmaicha (a nutty brew made with toasted rice kernels and Sencha green tea), Mr. Shao’s Mao Jian (Chinese, with hints of asparagus), or Green Jasmine (the fragrant, floral and crisp Chinese infusion). And all of them, no exception, fell head over heels for the bittersweet Japanese matcha, especially when drunk as a matcha latte!

So what happened to turn the former hate for green tea into a sudden love?

If you’re a die-hard black tea fan and your experience of green tea hasn’t been very pleasant, maybe it’s time to reconsider it! Most green tea haters have only tried the tea-bagged variety, used the wrong temperature water and infused it for too long. The result? A truly horrid flavour and all the valuable nutrients lost!

The most important thing is, of course, the quality of the tea. The reason why we don’t like teabags is because they usually contain poor quality tea, reduced to powder, and because they’re restrictive and don’t allow the tea leaves to unfurl and release their natural flavours.

Aside from that, we’ve been researching the most common complaints and have come up with a guide specifically created for green tea haters… We’re hoping you want to give it a try! Let us put it this way: imagine that someone says they hate wine, but you discover they’ve only tried cheap wine with ice cubes and drank it from an old mug. Would you try and convince them that wine can be wonderful?

Dispelling green tea myths

Complaint #1: “Green tea is bitter”

This is to do with the green tea quality and with how you prepare it. To make the most of your green tea, place a heaped teaspoon per cup in your teapot. Don’t use boiling water, as it will burn the leaves and make it taste bitter, also destroying the antioxidants and nutrients that make green tea so good for you. Instead, let the water cool down for about two or three minutes. Then pour it over the tea leaves and never let it infuse for longer than 2 minutes –the optimum time is usually between 1-2 minutes, depending on the variety. Let us know what you think!

Complaint #2: “Green tea is bland”

If you’re used to hearty, full-bodied brews, it might take a while to get used to green teas, as they’re usually lighter on the palate. But you might want to try Genmaicha! This blend of toasted rice kernels with Sencha (Japanese green tea) was traditionally drunk by peasants, as it was a cheaper alternative to loose leaf green tea. Because of its delicious nutty flavour, it’s now enjoyed by all segments of society. Grounding, comforting and with a fuller flavour, it’s also high in vitamin B.

Nutty genmaicha!

Complaint #3: “Green tea is grassy”

Not all of it is grassy! Generally speaking, Japanese green tea is grassier than other varieties because it’s been steamed. If you prefer a sweeter alternative, try Nokcha, a deliciously biscuity South Korean green, moreish and full of character.

Complaint #4: “Green tea gives me a stomach ache”

This might indicate that you’re sensitive to tannins, a  polyphenolic compound present in tea. If this is the case, using water cooled to the right temperature is essential, as hot water releases more tannins. Roasting also reduces the amount of tannins, so try Jade Cloud, a Chinese green with a chestnut aroma, picked in the spring, steamed and roasted.

Complaint #5: “Green tea is not naturally sweet”

We never add sugar to green tea, as it ruins its natural flavour. But if you have a sweet tooth, the floral edge of Green Jasmine, a crisp and naturally sweet green tea from China will conquer you. Or try Jasmine Pearls, a soothing blend of jasmine flowers and young tea tips

Lahloo Green Jasmine

If you’re a former green tea hater we’d love to hear from you! Tell us your story!

Thanks to all our Facebook and Twitter friends who contributed with their personal complaints. We hope this might help!

All about matcha

7 Sep

Preparing matcha, the Japanese finely-milled green tea, might seem a bit daunting at the beginning.  A few weeks ago we put together this step-by-step guide, but now you can watch this short video where infusionist Hannah from Lahloo Pantry tells you about the origins of the ritual, why matcha is so good for you and how to achieve the perfect whisking technique. Shot at Lahloo Pantry by Raspberry and Jam!

For more info and to buy our ceremonial grade matcha visit our website!

 

 

How to make the perfect matcha

13 Aug

This month we’ve succumbed to matcha madness and everything is bright green at Lahloo! If you haven’t tried matcha yet and you live in Bristol, pop to Lahloo Pantry at 10am, as they’ll be offering free matcha samples every morning, or keep an eye out for our matcha guerrilla across town! It’s also the best time to stock your cupboard, as we’re offering a 20% off matcha these days.

We’ve asked Holly at Lahloo Pantry for some tips to prepare the best matcha and here’s our guide!

1.  Place one heaped teaspoon of matcha  in a bowl.

2. Add a splash of boiled water cooled to 80C. This is important to avoid burning the tea and therefore to preserve all its goodness and flavour!

3. Whisk until frothy. This will be your base.

For a traditional bowl of matcha, top up with water boiled and cooled to 80C

Whisk again until frothy.

A thick layer of broth and many tiny bubbles on the surface – perfect bowl of matcha!

But if you fancy an iced matcha instead, simply add some cold water and ice to the base. Delicious!

Or add cold milk  for a creamy iced matcha latte.

Healthy matcha ice lollies

2 Aug

We adore iced matcha and matcha smoothies, so we knew that matcha ice lollies had to be amazing! We’ve tried two different variations and loved them both. If you prefer a creamier version, try the matcha and yogurt ice lollies. But if you’re in the mood for something fruitier, you’ll love the raspberry and matcha ones! They’re beautiful and slightly retro, and best of all, they’re completely guilt-free.

Matcha and raspberry ice lollies, 100% natural

 

Matcha and raspberry ice lollies

Place one heaped tsp of matcha in a bowl and add a splash of boiled water cooled to about 80C. Whisk until it forms a frothy paste. Top up with a bit of cold water. You can sweeten it to taste with honey or a little sugar if you like.

Blend half a punnet of raspberries adding just a little water.

Pour the matcha in the ice lolly moulds and add the blended raspberries on top. Put it in the freezer for about an hour, then take it out and add the ice lolly sticks. Put them back in and freeze overnight or for at least 5 hours. Lovely!

 

 

Beautiful, jade green ice lollies

 

Yogurt and matcha ice lollies

Place one heaped tsp of matcha in a bowl and add a splash of boiled water cooled to about 80C. Whisk until it forms a frothy paste. Add natural yogurt and sweeten it to taste with honey. Freeze for about an hour before you add the sticks. Then let it freeze for 4-5 hours. Delicious and creamy!

Learn more about Lahloo matcha here and enjoy 20% off during August!

Matcha palmiers

2 Aug

A light, crispy palmier with your afternoon tea is the perfect treat for when you fancy something small and sweet. For all of you, tea lovers, here’s our delicious recipe, with the added flavour and goodness of matcha green tea.

Ingredients (for 35-40 palmiers)

  • 250g plain flour
  • 200g unsalted butter
  • 125ml milk
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • Lahloo matcha
  • vanilla sugar

Place flour and salt in a bowl. Rub in 25g butter until it forms breadcrumbs. Cut the rest of the butter into cubes and add it too. Mix the egg and milk and add them to the previous mixture. It should form a sticky dough. Refrigerate for 30 mins.

Take it out of the fridge and roll it out, using matcha instead of flour to prevent sticking. Fold one third into the middle and then the other third on top. Roll it again. Dust off any excess matcha and refrigerate for 30 mins. Repeat this twice more.

Roll the pastry into a rectangle (around 40cms x 18cms) and sprinkle it with vanilla sugar. Then, roll it from the shorter edges into the centre until it has the shape of a palmier. Refrigerate again for 30mins.

Cut the pastry into slices of 1cm approximately and sprinkle them again with vanilla sugar. Keep the slices in the fridge until you want to bake them.

Before baking, flatten your palmiers a bit with a rolling pin. Bake at 200C for around 9 minutes. Delicious!

Win a matcha kit

1 Aug

To celebrate our month of #MatchaMadness we’re giving away a beautiful matcha kit (including a South Korean matcha bowl, a Japanese bamboo whisk, a tin of Lahloo matcha and two green and silver “matcha madness” badges, RP £50) and two tins of Lahloo matcha (August RP £16, usually £20).

To enter the competition, you just have to answer this question: Where does Lahloo matcha come from? Send your answers to maria@lahlootea.co.uk including MATCHACOMP in the subject.

It could be yours! 

Make the perfect matcha at home!

 

Terms and conditions: 

1. This competition is only open to UK residents.

2. Not open to employees of Lahloo Tea or Lahloo Pantry.

3. Only one entry per person.

4. All entries must be received by midnight of the 31st of August 2012.

5. Winners will be randomly selected and announced on Monday the 3rd of September. Winners will be contacted via e-mail. If the prize winner fails to respond to correspondence from Lahloo Tea or to claim his/her prize within 14 days of receipt of notification, Lahloo Tea shall be entitled to select an alternative prize winner. The prize winner who has not responded won’t be entitled to a prize.

6. The prize will not be transferable to another person and it is not exchangeable for cash.

How green tea can help you focus

1 Aug

What do you do to relax? Some of you, no doubt, will answer “Put the kettle on and have a cup of tea”. There’s something soothing in enjoying a cup of tea. But is it just the comfort provided by an old ritual or is there something else?

Meditating produces alpha brain waves

Some people relax doing some kind of exercise. Kate, for instance, loves spinning. And although being screamed at while pedaling furiously might not be everyone’s idea of relaxation, the subsequent release of endorphines makes up for it. Another popular option is yoga (Maria can’t recommend it enough!). But repeating a chain of standing strength asanas isn’t the hardest part of it… meditating can be a real challenge too!

Research has found that meditation  (practised by humans since ancient times, through different cultures) has a positive effect in mental well-being, bringing calm, clarity, and concentration. Sounds wonderful, right? If you find yourself struggling to focus, blaming the information overload (hello, Twitter) and wishing you could just finish what you started, maybe what you need is a healthy dose of alpha brain waves! 

Our brains always have some level of electrical activity. Beta waves are predominant when we’re working on goal-oriented tasks. During meditation, our brain produces alpha waves, and this is believed to be the ideal state for learning. 

Green tea lovers have an advantage, though, as there are other ways of producing alpha waves. Amino acid L-theanine appears naturally in green tea, particularly matcha. L-theanine stimulates the production of alpha brain waves. By mimicking the positive effects of meditation, it improves your concentration and learning performance and it protects against stress, thereby supporting the immune system. The result is a state of sustained mental clarity, ideal for finishing that assignment, preparing your exams or coming up with a battery of ideas for your next creative project. So now you know -don’t reach for the coffee, drink your greens instead!

Need to finish that assignment? Reach for the matcha! 

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