Monday, March 7, 2011

Tea for the Tillerman: A few ideas on how to incorporate more tea into your daily routine

I LOVE TEA! I can easily drink two litres of it a day without even thinking about it, which also means I'm getting my recommended 8 glasses of water a day without even thinking about it! I have my first cup as soon as I wake up in the morning and then I switch back to drinking tea after consuming at least one (maybe two) cup(s) of coffee at work ;) I also drink a large amount of tea during and post workouts. I converted to loose leaf tea about a year ago upon the recommendation of my trainer and I haven't looked back since. The benefits of loose leaf for me include extensive flavour options, superior quality of tea, and a lower price point. I like all varieties including white, black, and oolong, but green is my favourite. Some of my "go to" green tea blends include:

"Goji Green"
Green tea that also includes goji berries

"Matcha-iri Genmaicha"
Japanese rice tea with matcha. My all time favourite!!

"Green Goddess"
The blend incorporates walnuts

Some health benefits of green tea include:
  • A natural metabolism booster (bonus!)
  • The potential to fight cancer and heart disease
  • High anti-oxident levels
  • The ability to improve cholesterol levels
I drink my tea black and it's how I recommend everyone enjoy it to truly reap the health benefits. Trust me, once you have a beautiful pot of tea you don't want to spoil it with milk, sugar, or anything else for that matter. If you aren't fond of drinking things hot, try boiling a large pot of green tea in the evening then placing it in the fridge overnight. In the morning, add lemons and lemon juice and enjoy your homemade iced tea! If you need a bit of sweetness, try adding stevia or honey to taste.

My kids love green tea and drink it quite often, with my youngest even taking it to school. However I do understand that it isn't always as easy for youngsters (or adults) to enjoy a pot of tea since we are so accustomed to added flavours and sugars in our drinks. This is why I was SO excited when I was recently introduced to a "juice" recipe that is made using tea!!! Below is the recipe that I was given. Please note that I was taught this using "eyeball" measurements, so I've been trying to work with this the best I can. As always, I recommend this as a guideline and encourage you to do what works best for you while making this. One batch of "concentrate" lasts our family about one week.

Always in the fridge "Juice"

3 litres of water
10 fruit tea bags *These can be whatever your heart desires or your taste-buds crave. Think of flavour combinations that you enjoy. My last batch was peach, raspberry, pomegranate, blueberry!
2 cups of honey
2 packages of stevia
2 lemons
Any fresh fruit you fancy

Add water to a large pot and bring to a boil
Add teabags and remove from heat
Let steep for 2-3 hours, stirring occasionally
Remove teabags
Add 2 cups* of honey

This mixture becomes your "juice"concentrate. When you are ready to make the juice:

Add two cups of concentrate to a large mason jar or pitcher
Add two packages of stevia
Add the juice from two lemons
Add 1.5* litre of water
Add fresh fruit, stir, and enjoy!

*The first time I made this I only used 1 cup of honey because 2 cups just seemed like so much to me. Now I leave the honey out all together because I find that the stevia adds more than enough sweetness on it's own.

**The 1.5 litres of water is a rough estimate. When I use a mason jar, I really have no idea how much I'm adding because I just add it to taste. My pitcher however, has measurements and I believe that 1.5 litres was how much I added last time.

Using flavour combinations that inspire/appeal to you will allow you to enjoy all the wonderful health benefits of tea under the clever guise of delicious juice! Think summer, think spritzers, think this recipe :D YUM!!!!

My other love is Matcha Green Tea Lattes. Matcha is powdered green tea and since you are actually ingesting the whole green tea leaf when drinking matcha, you receive more health benefits. Matcha provides you with approximately 10 times more of the health-promoting nutrients of steeped green tea and it is a powerful detoxifier and extremely healthy energizer. Benefits of Matcha can include:
  • A natural raise in energy levels with no negative side affects
  • An induced sate of relaxation and clam mental alertness
  • Up to a 40% increase in metabolism upon regular consumption
  • Regulation of healthy blood sugar levels
  • It can act as a strong blood detoxifier and alkalizer

Matcha Green Tea Latte using "Matcha-iri Genmaicha"

The following is how I make my Match Green Tea Lattes. Of note: we recently had a RIDICULOUS European espresso machine installed at work, so truthfully, I let it do most of the work for me, but this is how I used to prepare my lattes. BTW, I LOVE having an automatic frother and I'm looking into getting one for home because I'm finding that I can't live without it!! The recipe is as follows:

Home version of the standard
"Matcha Green Tea Latte"

1-2 tsp of matcha powder
2 oz hot water
Organic vanilla soy milk. Enough to fill your cup

Place matcha powder in a cup
Add hot water to make a paste
Take a separate cup and fill it about 3/4 full with the soy milk.
Heat the milk in the microwave for about 1 minute or until steam rises from the cup
Place a wire whisk in the milk and twirl the whisk by rapidly rolling the handle between your palms until the desired froth is achieved.
Pour the milk into the cup with the matcha paste being sure to hold back the froth with a spoon.
Spoon the froth on top of the latte
Sprinkle with additional matcha powder if desired.

  • If I'm short on time I make my latte using "Matcha-iri Genmaicha" rather than making a matcha paste
  • If I'm really short on time I only heat the milk rather than frothing it.

I challenge you to add (more) tea to your daily routine and see if you notice any health benefits.

Thanks for stopping by :)

Peace and Love,



  1. yes! from one obsessive tea drinker to another, this post was fabulous. :)
    love the recipe for 'Juice'. i'll be trying that ASAP.
    also, Kusmi Teas are awesome if you haven't tried them. a little expensive, but awesome.

  2. Another inspiring post :) I also love the "juice" recipe.. and I've been pondering loose tea lately too maybe now's the time to try it!