• Tea Tuesday,  The Great European Adventure

    Turkish Tea: Dark, Rich, and Economically Sustainable

    Maybe you’ve heard of Turkish coffee, known for being thick, dark, and rich in flavor. Well, Turkish tea is actually quite similar. Traditionally made in two kettles, which are stacked on top of one another, the larger bottom kettle is the one that is filled with water. Once boiled, the water is poured into the smaller top kettle, which contains several spoonfuls of tea leaves. This makes for a strong cuppa, so some of the boiled water is saved in the larger kettle, to be used by each individual tea drinker to dilute the beverage to their preferred tea strength. At the end of the process, it is acceptable to…

  • Tea Tuesday

    DAVID’s TEA is trendy and I am an old grump

    Last week I was in Toronto at TBEX (the largest travel blogging conference in the world) and the #BlogHouse where I spent a lot of time talking to people about travel blogging. And tea. Every time I told someone about my blog, I would say, I write about travel — my personal travel narrative to be exact — and I also write about tea. Because TBEX is a travel blogging conference no one is impressed by how many countries I’ve visited or my chosen lifestyle, but everyone was surprised when I mentioned tea. And everyone had an opinion. My conversations with other bloggers went a lot like this: “You blog…

  • Tea Tuesday

    Guest Post: Yerba Mate

    (For Tea Tuesday this week, I asked my brother, Ian, to fill in while I’m traipsing about the Southeastern United States, and he agreed to write a guest post about his favorite tea-like drink: yerba mate. He’s a freelance journalist, and you can read more of his writing at www.iandoesprojects.com, where he is conducting and documenting “life projects” — finite and arbitrary experiments in doing.) Hi everybody, I’m Ian. You might remember me from that time I went to London and Edinburgh with Emma. I started drinking mate regularly when I studied abroad in Buenos Aires during my junior year of college. I like to say that it’s “a habit…

  • Tea Tuesday

    Tea Tuesday: Fresh Ginger Tea

    Tonight’s Tea Tuesday post was going to be about a chai concentrate E and I concocted. But that post will have to wait for another day because the mixture we made includes 8 bags of black tea, it’s 10:30 at night, and that’s a lot of caffeine before bed. Rather than leave you with no Tea Tuesday post, I’m sharing a cuppa that’s a bit more appropriate for this time of night. This unappetizing-looking beverage is fresh ginger tea. And it’s delicious, so back off. I’ve been feeling anxious (lots of work to finish before I leave for my road trip on Friday), and I’ve had a stomachache for most…

  • Tea Tuesday

    Tea Tuesday: German Chamomile

    See this plant? This is German Chamomile growing in the tea garden at Hana Farms, the organic farm I worked at in Hawai’i. This sad scraggly thing is also German Chamomile: This particular specimen is looking pathetic because I transplanted it to the garden bed in front of my cabin, and, at the time this photo was taken, it was still adjusting to its new home. The farm manager told me that when you transplant something, it helps to pick off any flowers so that the plant will focus on growing stronger roots instead of wasting energy on keeping its flowers from wilting. So, when I saw my German Chamomile…

  • Tea Tuesday

    Tea Tuesday: Does tea get better with age?

    Does tea, like a fine wine, or a delicious cheese get better with age? This Tea Tuesday, E found a plastic bag full of well-aged tea bags in his parent’s kitchen cabinet, and we decided to find out. So, how did my 23-year-old cup of tea taste? Like a piece of history! (Actually, it started out sort of artificial, but, after steeping a while longer, had a strong sweet flavor with a hint of sour blackberry. I guess it takes longer for old herbs to steep?)

  • Tea Tuesday

    Tea Tuesday: Homemade Biscotti

    This Tuesday, I’m enjoying a cup of herbal tea with 2 pieces of homemade biscotti. I put the biscotti on a plate rather than sitting down with the whole bag so that I wouldn’t eat 8 pieces with my tea like I did last night. You may remember that I don’t cook much, so while this pistachio and cranberry biscotti (also known as heaven) is homemade, it was not made in my home. It was a belated birthday present from my friend Katie, whom I’ve mentioned before on the blog (here, here, and here). Personally, I can think of no better accompaniment to biscotti than tea; it makes the hard…

  • Close to Home,  Tea Tuesday

    Tea Tuesday: Home From Hawai’i

    You may have noticed on the sidebar that my current location has changed. This time last week, E and I said our goodbyes to Maui, and returned to New England. It was an interesting first week back: Monday night we slept on a beach in Hawai’i, Tuesday night we slept on a bench in the San Diego airport, and Wednesday night, after more than 24 hours of traveling, we slept in a bed at E’s parents’ house in New Hampshire. It was our first time sleeping in a real bed in two months! After just one day of recovering from our jet lag, we were off again! Luckily, we were…

  • Hawaiian Summer Camp,  Tea Tuesday

    Tea Tuesday: Brewsday

    This Tea Tuesday, I’m mixing it up and writing about another brewed beverage — beer! E’s sister, Farley, and a few other people at the farm are home brewers who regularly make beer for the enjoyment of the rest of us. It rained this afternoon, which meant working on the land wasn’t an option, so everyone decided to tap a keg instead (great work ethic here). When I asked Far about it, she gave me the beginner’s guide to brewing beer, and told me about the type we drank this evening. Now, I’ve been on a few brewery tours, so I was aware of the basic fact that beer is…

  • Hawaiian Summer Camp,  Tea Tuesday

    Tea Tuesday: All the Mint

    All mint tea is not created equal. Probably because there are so many different kinds of mint to choose from. For the most part, if you purchase bagged mint tea in the grocery store, it will either be labeled “peppermint” or simply “mint,” in which case it is likely to have more of a spearmint flavor. At Hana Farms, however, we have at least seven different kinds of mint growing, each of which has a unique flavor and could be made into a distinct tea. Almost all of them grow in our official Tea Garden, but some of them also grow as weeds around the entire property. The most prevalent…