I never used to be a crafty person. I used to hate making things, but all of a sudden I’ve found myself catching the crafting bug. It started out pretty simply: I needed a way to organize all my jewelry and ended up making a stand for bracelets, then a tree for rings. But now the crafting bug has seeped its way into all corners of my life, including cooking. Which means… canning! So how do you combine canning and tea? Well you can obviously do tea-infused jellies and jams, but I found something much better (if you have an unwavering sweet tooth): Earl Grey Milk Jam! Which is not really a jam at all, but a rather decadent condensed milk concoction.
I thought for sure I’d written a note on this tea before: it’s a floral but rather hearty earl grey due to the addition of rosemary, so I thought it’d be perfect for this experiment. It’s a pretty simple recipe
1/2 cup cream
3/4 cup whole milk
1/3 cup honey or sugar (you can use brown sugar, raw sugar, whatever)
4 tablespoons brewed tea
The original recipe, which I’ve tweaked quite a bit, says to simmer for half an hour. This is a load of baloney, because it took an hour and a half on a pretty high simmer for the mixture to reach the proper thickness for me. It’s kind of labor intensive, because it needs to be stirred every few minutes so it does not reach a full boil. You want it dark and thick! It makes a small jar-full, I used an old relish jar that had been very thoroughly washed. The milk jam needs to be strained once cooked, since it is essentially a custard and will have some thicker “chunks” and you want a nice, smooth texture. Allow it to cool a bit, then pop that sucker in the fridge.
It’s originally meant to be a spread for toast and such, but I’ve been using it to add a bit of depth to rice pudding, yogurt, things like that. It’s absolutely fantastic, and if you have the patience to hang out in your kitchen stirring for over an hour it’s definitely worth a try! I imagine it’d be great with all kinds of tea, not just earl grey. I’m going to try chai next!