27

Well, this was a dud for me. I tried a teabag sample, and I love the teabags and the hermetical packaging of that sample, but this is just not for me.

I can only detect the “cinnamon” on the tea, not the tea and not the advertised cloves and orange. Just cinnamon in tea, not a good thing. And I got to admit, to myself foremost, that I am a cinnamon snob. I did not know such a thing existed, but apparently I am one. I used to dissociate the “chewing gum” cinnamon flavour from “real” (to me) cinnamon flavours. And then I found out the reason why, turns out chewing gum uses what is the prevalent “cinnamon” in the USA annd that is a whole different spice (cassia) than the stuff I call cinnamon. (Real cinnamon to me. Ok, wikipedia calls it ceylon cinnamon. It is different seriously). And besides the fact it fails the expectation and that anything flavoures too strongly with cassia will always remind of cinnamon chewing gum than “real” cinnamon, I got to admit that I do not like cassia much on its own, tastes sort of thin and aggressive to me.

This tea being just so one note, and that note being cassia (Not cinnamon! wish we could unleash the pedantism of the european comission on them), this tea was really not meant for me.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 30 sec
Dylan Oxford

You’re making me question my love of cinnamon. Any tell-tale ways of determining whether you’re being sold cinnamon or cassia?

cteresa

I suppose a “but they smell/taste so differently” is not too helpful? ;)

Ok, first thing, cassia is usually much cheaper. The “bark” is easy to distinguish, usually those pretty solid, rolled quills of bark are almost always cassia. (and usually not a problem, since they are not meant to be powdered). Real cinnamon strips are usually much thinner, less rolled and not pretty (hence makes sense to sell cassia bark, since it is is usually much prettier for things where you use. Found a pic

http://www.henriettesherbal.com/blog1/pics/cinnamon-1.jpg

on this blog post http://www.henriettesherbal.com/blog/cinnamons.html

ah, and cassia is more reddish usually.

But we usually buy ground cinnamon. And that is much harder to tell apart from look alone. Cassia is usually redder. The real big difference is the taste. Cassia is sharper, spicier (in the piquancy sense, not in the sense of being more aromatic or richer), more one-note to my nose, more overpowering. Though, to be fair, for recipes for savoury things, to combine with garlic or peppers or ginger, I think cassia is better. Cinnamon is just different, I can not explain, like a much creamier scent, much smoother, and much better for anything sweet IMO.

I think maybe the best way is to check out yourself (and if what you love so far is cassia, that is great, you can keep on loving it but now check its cousin in case you also love it ;)). Usually asian stores got it reliably. if google does not fail me, in the USA maybe you can find it sold for the mexican market under its spanish name canela?

Dylan Oxford

I may have to look for it. I checked Amazon for Ceylon Cinnamon as well, and there were a fair number of options to choose from. I’m really quite curious now.

cteresa

It is worth comparing, and yes, it is one of those things which is different but not really possible to describe how much so.

Dylan Oxford

Out of curiousity, do you have any recommendations regarding a good orange/cinnamon tea? Orange Spice (from Stash) was really my ‘first love’ when it comes to tea. At the moment, I’m drinking the version from MarketSpice, and I’m quite fond of it. But, if there’s something out there that might be better, I’d be more than willing to give it a shot (pretending for a minute or two that I didn’t just order half a pound of it)

cteresa

If you got a first love when it cames to tea, those often stick!
And I can not really advise any particular, though orange and cinnamon are usually christmas teas. I think IKEA black christmas tea is mostly orange and spices (not just cinnamon). And maybe a few more (but all I can think is mostly european stuff which might be at all easy to find in the USA)

Teresa Sousa

For Orange/cinnamon combination my favourite so far goes to Soderblandning from The Tea Centre of Stockholm http://www.theteacentre.se/p/soederblandning/993 This tea has a combination of honey, cinnamon, orange peel and dried fruits.
Here in Portugal it’s quite usual to drink it together with a glass of Port Wine. I actually bought it in North Portugal (Douro Region) in a special package with a bottle of Taylor’s 10 year old Tawny port.

cteresa

Obrigada, Teresa, that sounds like a very interesting tea! And I never had tea with Port wine, it is a good idea, particularly if a fruit and cinnamon mix.

I found out Mariage Fréres´ Christmas tea (thé de Nöel) is orange-cinnamon, but I never had it, if I ever do, will write a tasting note.

Dylan Oxford

Hrmmm… I don’t think I’ve ordered a tea I can’t pronounce before…

cteresa

LOL, sooner or later you will ;) Even just some origins or types, I am not sure I know how to pronounce them. Like the chineses origin in English is sometimes called Keemun, I have seen it written Qimen as well, and I am sure pronunciation is pretty different from either.

Hallieod

Hee – Eu bureaucracy has to be good for something! I’m quite pleased now, as I rushed to check my (organic) cinnamon and it is proper cinnamon, not cassia! (Also discovered another tea that sounds delicious in the comments, of course.)

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Dylan Oxford

You’re making me question my love of cinnamon. Any tell-tale ways of determining whether you’re being sold cinnamon or cassia?

cteresa

I suppose a “but they smell/taste so differently” is not too helpful? ;)

Ok, first thing, cassia is usually much cheaper. The “bark” is easy to distinguish, usually those pretty solid, rolled quills of bark are almost always cassia. (and usually not a problem, since they are not meant to be powdered). Real cinnamon strips are usually much thinner, less rolled and not pretty (hence makes sense to sell cassia bark, since it is is usually much prettier for things where you use. Found a pic

http://www.henriettesherbal.com/blog1/pics/cinnamon-1.jpg

on this blog post http://www.henriettesherbal.com/blog/cinnamons.html

ah, and cassia is more reddish usually.

But we usually buy ground cinnamon. And that is much harder to tell apart from look alone. Cassia is usually redder. The real big difference is the taste. Cassia is sharper, spicier (in the piquancy sense, not in the sense of being more aromatic or richer), more one-note to my nose, more overpowering. Though, to be fair, for recipes for savoury things, to combine with garlic or peppers or ginger, I think cassia is better. Cinnamon is just different, I can not explain, like a much creamier scent, much smoother, and much better for anything sweet IMO.

I think maybe the best way is to check out yourself (and if what you love so far is cassia, that is great, you can keep on loving it but now check its cousin in case you also love it ;)). Usually asian stores got it reliably. if google does not fail me, in the USA maybe you can find it sold for the mexican market under its spanish name canela?

Dylan Oxford

I may have to look for it. I checked Amazon for Ceylon Cinnamon as well, and there were a fair number of options to choose from. I’m really quite curious now.

cteresa

It is worth comparing, and yes, it is one of those things which is different but not really possible to describe how much so.

Dylan Oxford

Out of curiousity, do you have any recommendations regarding a good orange/cinnamon tea? Orange Spice (from Stash) was really my ‘first love’ when it comes to tea. At the moment, I’m drinking the version from MarketSpice, and I’m quite fond of it. But, if there’s something out there that might be better, I’d be more than willing to give it a shot (pretending for a minute or two that I didn’t just order half a pound of it)

cteresa

If you got a first love when it cames to tea, those often stick!
And I can not really advise any particular, though orange and cinnamon are usually christmas teas. I think IKEA black christmas tea is mostly orange and spices (not just cinnamon). And maybe a few more (but all I can think is mostly european stuff which might be at all easy to find in the USA)

Teresa Sousa

For Orange/cinnamon combination my favourite so far goes to Soderblandning from The Tea Centre of Stockholm http://www.theteacentre.se/p/soederblandning/993 This tea has a combination of honey, cinnamon, orange peel and dried fruits.
Here in Portugal it’s quite usual to drink it together with a glass of Port Wine. I actually bought it in North Portugal (Douro Region) in a special package with a bottle of Taylor’s 10 year old Tawny port.

cteresa

Obrigada, Teresa, that sounds like a very interesting tea! And I never had tea with Port wine, it is a good idea, particularly if a fruit and cinnamon mix.

I found out Mariage Fréres´ Christmas tea (thé de Nöel) is orange-cinnamon, but I never had it, if I ever do, will write a tasting note.

Dylan Oxford

Hrmmm… I don’t think I’ve ordered a tea I can’t pronounce before…

cteresa

LOL, sooner or later you will ;) Even just some origins or types, I am not sure I know how to pronounce them. Like the chineses origin in English is sometimes called Keemun, I have seen it written Qimen as well, and I am sure pronunciation is pretty different from either.

Hallieod

Hee – Eu bureaucracy has to be good for something! I’m quite pleased now, as I rushed to check my (organic) cinnamon and it is proper cinnamon, not cassia! (Also discovered another tea that sounds delicious in the comments, of course.)

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Inconstant tea drinker – I mostly drink tea when not too hot. I hang around steepster much more frequently in (northern hemisphere) cold season.

- Teas -

I like all sorts of tea, flavoured and unflavoured, though I am picky. I am always willing to try anything new. I am now particularly interested in single origins.

I am one of those people who actually loves Lapsang Souchong. I am not crazy about Earl Grey, in general. I don´t quite get Darjeeling teas, but I am trying to make sure …

I like rooibos, though not all bases. I loathe hibiscus. I do not like fennel/liquorice/anise in blends or teas with chicory. I am picky about what I consider true cinnamon.

As you can probably tell from my cupboard, the brands I find more interesting right now are Mariage Fréres,Thé-o-Dor and Yumchaa.

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Portugal

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