Tea of the Week for October 26, 2015!
just in time for Halloween, here’s the great Pumpkin Houjicha!
Way back when I had been presented with the opportunity to take over 52Teas from its creator – Frank Horbelt – my plan was to create a Count Chocula type of blend for the week of Halloween. But, I really wanted to first create my ultimate Chocolate flavor before I started doing a lot of chocolate varieties so I decided to put my dreams of a Count Chocula tea off for at least a year and instead do something that I had envisioned back when I created my Lemon Cheesecake Bar Houjicha: Pumpkin Houjicha. When I first started blending the Lemon Cheesecake Bar, the first scent that I experienced was that of the roasted green tea. It smelled nutty and sweet and toasty. It smelled like autumn. So my thoughts then turned to pumpkins and well, I decided that I must make a Pumpkin Houjicha!
So here it is! My top-notch Japanese Houjicha flavored with Pumpkin, ginger, cinnamon and nutmeg. I kept the spices simple because I wanted the Houjicha to be the star of this blend. I added some Calendula petals for some visual interest. I fell in love with this tea at first sip, but don’t take my word for it, check out this review of my Pumpkin Houjicha!
- – -
Mmm! This is so good.
One of the things I’m asked often as a Mad Tea Artist is “when are you going to make more flavored Houjicha blends?” Well, I listened and this week, I bring you Pumpkin Houjicha!
So you might be asking yourself – why a pumpkin flavored Houjicha? Well, Houjicha is – in my opinion – a very autumnal tasting tea. That roasty-toasty flavor, that natural nuttiness of the Houjicha just tastes very much like autumn to me. And really, is there another flavor that we associate with fall more than pumpkin? So why not bring these two flavors together?
Well, it’s a stroke of brilliant madness, if I do say so myself, because I’m loving what I’m tasting here. I went light on the spices – just a little bit of cinnamon and nutmeg – but I did feel that some spices were called for because pumpkin just doesn’t taste pumpkin-y to me without some sort of spice to bring it to life. The result is a toasty, nutty sweet pumpkin-y tea with just a hint of spice that’s really quite lovely. Seriously – you MUST try this one. If you only try one pumpkin tea this fall – let it be this one. YUM!
To brew: I used my Kati Tumbler (again!) and measured a heaping bamboo scoop of tea into the basket and added 12 ounces of hot water (heated to 180°F) and allowed the tea to steep for 3 minutes. Strain. Add sweetener if that’s the way you like your tea. This isn’t one that really requires sugar – I tried it both with sugar and without. Without sugar, it’s a really tasty blend and I could taste all the elements. Then I tried it with some sugar and found that it brought out the spices a little more and gave the pumpkin some dimension.
Organic ingredients: roasted green tea, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, calendula petals and all-natural flavors.
Steep: 1 1/2 of tea to 12 oz. 180°F water. Steep 2-4 minutes. Allow tea to cool 5-6 minutes after brewing for best flavor.