Southern Peach Ice Cream with Bourbon-Peach Swirl

It’s August. We’re in the middle of a heat wave here in Toronto (which really could be the south, for all intents and purposes) and eating ice cream at the water park every day. So when I stumbled upon this recipe, I couldn’t resist! This is not for the faint of heart. Here it is people. 

Adapted from 10th Kitchen

For sweet tea ice cream

  1. 2 cups heavy cream
  2. 1 ½ cups  whole milk
  3. ¼ cup light corn syrup
  4. 6 tbs Silver Service Peach Passion tea
  5. ½ cup granulated sugar
  6. 2 tablespoons cornstarch

For bourbon-peach swirl

  1. 1 cup peaches, blanched, peeled, pitted and roughly chopped
  2. 1 tablespoon sugar
  3. 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  4. 1 tablespoon bourbon


  1. To
    make the ice cream, heat the cream, milk and corn syrup in a large
    saucepan until just simmering. Add loose-leaf tea, lower heat to low and
    simmer, keeping a close watch so it doesn’t boil over, for 10 minutes,
    then remove from heat and allow the tea to steep for 2 hours.
  2. Strain the mixture through a very fine mesh sieve or cheesecloth and try to squeeze as much of the liquid goodness out!
  3. Whisk
    together sugar and cornstarch until combined, then whisk into the
    tea-infused cream mixture.  Reheat and cook over medium heat, stirring
    constantly, until the mixture reaches a gentle boil, then reduce heat to
    low and simmer, stirring constantly, for 30 seconds (mixture will be
    thick and bubbly).
  4. Strain
    mixture through a fine mesh sieve into a large bowl, then cover tightly
    and refrigerate until thoroughly chilled, at least a few hours but
    preferably overnight. (Take our advice here.)
  5. To
    make the peach-bourbon swirl, toss together the peaches with cornstarch
    and sugar and cook in a medium saucepan over medium heat until the
    peaches have broken down and the mixture is bubbly, thick and delicious, 5 minutes
    or so.  Cool mixture, stir in the bourbon, and refrigerate until
    thoroughly chilled.
  6. Once both the cream mixture and peach mixture are chilled, process the
    cream mixture in your ice cream maker according to manufacturer’s
    directions.  Purée the peach mixture in a blender or food processor
    until smooth, then drop spoonfuls of both mixtures into a resealable
    container, alternating between them.  Run a butter knife through to
    create a swirl effect, then freeze until firm.  Makes about a quart. Which should last you about a day.

Golden State Kiddie Pool Accompaniment

We are visiting family in Toronto this month and the heat is unreal! Let’s just say there has been a lot of watermelon and cold drinks consumed while we soak our feet in the kiddie pool. I’m not even joking.

This month’s green tea, citrusy and the slightest bit sweet from the strawberries, got me wondering what it would be like with a bit of gin…and some citrus zest to complement the lemongrass in the tea.

You don’t need to be living in a heat wave to enjoy it. In fact, if you want to infuse soda water (instead of gin) and make this non-alcoholic, I think that would be fabulous too! And still totally suitable to drink kiddie-poolside.


1 ½ cups dry gin, at room temperature

2 tbs Golden State Green Tea

¾ cups freshly squeezed lime juice

4-6 tablespoons citrus syrup (lemon version) to taste

6 lime wedges as garnish

For the citrus syrup:

2 cups Sugar

¾ cup freshly squeezed orange juice

¼ cup water

1 tablespoon grated lemon or orange zest

Make the citrus syrup

Stir the ingredients together in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally until the sugar is dissolved. Lower the heat to low & continue cooking until you get a syrupy consistency, about 4 minutes. Remove from the heat & let stand for 30 minutes. Strain though a wire-mesh sieve double lined with damp cheesecloth. Store refrigerated in an airtight container for up to one month. Makes 1 ½ cups.

Make the Base

Pour the gin into a 3 cup or larger pitcher. Add the loose leaf tea & let sit at room temperature for at least 1 hour. When ready to serve, strain out the tea and add the lime juice & citrus syrup. Stir until well combined.

Make the Cocktails

For each cocktail, add about 3 ¼ ounces of the base to a cocktail shaker that is 2/3 filled with ice. Cover and shake vigorously; strain into an ice filled glass.Squeeze a lime wedge over the drink & drop it in. Enjoy!

Orange Rooibos syrup

My mouth is dreaming of this with french toast. But then I’ve just been craving french toast, so there’s that.

How about some syrup with fizzy water and ice for an Italian soda?

Or perhaps some other nationally named dish or drink of choice.

In any case, here’s the recipe. Enjoy!

1 cup Organic Rooibos Orange tea

2 tbs honey

2 tbs sugar

½ cup freshly squeezed orange juice

1 tsp vanilla

pinch of salt

Brew your tea, then place the first 4 ingredients into a medium pot and bring to a boil over medium heat, then simmer until it thickens, about 15 minutes. Remove from heat and add the vanilla and salt. Place in a jar or use immediately on anything you deem appropriate. Enjoy!

Strawberry Fields Summer Slush

Happy summer tea drinkers! Enjoy this fruity, refreshing drink with or without the gin to celebrate this amazing weather.


6 parts cold-brewed Strawberry Fields tea

1 part gin

1 tsp sugar

¼ cup frozen strawberries

7 ice cubes

Place all ingredients into your blender and blend away to your desired consistency. For fun, place some salt on your cup rim, pour and add a squeeze of lime. Enjoy!

Nandi Hills black tea

We hope you are enjoying this new tea from Justea, picked in Nandi Hills, Kenya! Here’s some fun facts about this tea.

Brewing Suggestions:
• Water: 205°F (this is very important!)
• Tea: 1 heaping tbs per 8 oz of water.
• Infusion: 3 Minutes. Steeps 2 infusions (2nd infusion may require longer
steep time and slightly warmer water).


This tea is grown by Jacob (father) & Boaz Katah (son) in Nandi Hills, 6,700 ft above sea level. It is the highest elevation of tea gardens in Africa! The tea leaves are carefully hand-plucked, 2 leaves and a bud.

No pesticides are ever used on any of Justea’s teas. Not all
farmers use fertilizer, but if they do, they only use fertilizers for the soil
twice a year. It is the common tea fertilizer NPK (Nitrogen, Phosphorous
and Potassium). Although this is just a small application of fertilizer
(especially in comparison to tea grown in India and China), they have been
working with the farmers to move to fully organic, but it is a 3 year process
for organic certification.

Tasting Notes:

This black tea is very unique for the Kenyan market. Unlike traditional Kenyan
black teas, this tea lacks any bitterness and should be enjoyed without milk and
sugar (although Michael still takes milk and honey with his). It is full bodied and contains notes of grilled zucchini and walnuts! An excellent sipper with low tannins and a silky finish.

Justea’s Kenyan Tea Story:
All of Justea’s artisanal Kenyan teas (Purple, Green, Oolong, Nandi Hills Black) are:
• Farmer Family Direct and ethical trade, full transparency from garden to cup
• Very unique and rare to the Kenya/World market
• Not available from any other factory or garden in Kenya
• Superior Whole Leaf Grade, unlike 99% of Kenyan teas which are CTC
• Hand Plucked from highest elevation tea gardens
• Small Batch processed


Maracuja Orange Tea Pops

Tea pops are the perfect summer treat!

Where it’s hot, they keep you cool.

Where it’s not (ie, Vancouver), they keep you happy.

Basically, it’s always a good time for a tea pop.

Here’s how to make them:

Simply cold brew a jar of Maracuja Orange for 6 hours or more in your fridge. (Place 2 heaping tbs of loose-leaf tea into the jar, fill with cold water, shake, cover and place in your fridge. Give it a little shake every hour or so.) Once it’s finished brewing, shake it and pour through a strainer into another jar. Add 2 tbs simple syrup, shake and pour into your favourite popsicle molds. Place into the freezer and wait patiently.


Berries Galore Pineapple Shrub

This drink takes a little more prep, but it will be well worth it when you’re sitting in the sun holding this.



Servings: 8

  • 1¼ cups sugar
  • 1 pineapple, peeled, cut into 1½-inch pieces
  • 6 tablespoons distilled white vinegar
  • 2 tbs Organic Berries Galore
  • 1 jalapeño, thinly sliced into rounds
  • 5 sprigs mint
  • 1 lime, thinly sliced into wheels
  • 2 cups tequila (optional)
  • 1 cup fresh lime juice


  • Bring sugar and 1 cup water to a boil in a medium saucepan and cook, stirring, until sugar dissolves, about 3 minutes. Add pineapple, reduce heat, and simmer 10 minutes. Remove from heat and let
    sit 30 minutes to infuse syrup with pineapple flavor. Strain into a small
    bowl; stir in vinegar. Cover and chill shrub until cold, about 30 minutes. Cover and chill pineapple pieces until ready to use.

  • Meanwhile, cold brew Berries Galore: place 2 tbs tea into a 1-Litre jar and fill with cold water. Cover, shake and place in the fridge for 3-4 hours.
  • Set aside 8 slices jalapeño and 8 pieces pineapple for serving. Stir mint, lime wheels, tequila (if desired), lime juice, remaining jalapeño and pineapple, 1 cup shrub, and 1 cup tea in a large
    pitcher and chill at least 1 hour.

  • Serve in ice-filled rocks glasses garnished with
    reserved jalapeño slices and pineapple pieces.

Walnut Green cold brew infusion

Aromatica’s Walnut Green Tea is bursting with flavour:
distinct coconut, sencha tea and well, walnuts. Cold brewing it is not only
easy, it brings out all the flavour without any bitterness.

Here are our instructions for cold-brewing.

Another way we like to enjoy this tea is by making it into a
concentrated infusion that imparts all the beautiful flavours into whatever you’re

Here’s how to do it:


2 tbs loose-leaf Walnut Green Tea

3 tbs sugar (or honey)


Mix 2 tbs loose-leaf Walnut Green Tea with 1 cup of water
and 3 tbs of sugar or honey in a jar. Shake well and place it in your fridge.
Go back and shake it whenever you think of it, ideally every 2 hours or so. You
can leave it anywhere from 48 hours to 2 weeks, depending on how strong you
like it. (Michael wanted me to mention that if you leave it for 2 weeks, you
obviously don’t have to shake it every 2 hours.) 😆

Once it’s done brewing, strain the leaves and pour the
infusion into another jar. Michael loves it in martinis, but it would also be
great poured on ice cream, in drinks, baking, whatever you like! Enjoy!

Ginger Pu-erh Old Fashioned

The world of infusing alcohol with tea is yours for the
taking! We used 2 tbs of Rishi’s Ginger Pu-erh to 1 cup of bourbon and left it
for 12 hours to infuse at room temperate, because we love flavour. Feel free to
play with the amount and times to suit your tea-infused
alcohol preferences.

Here’s the recipe (adapted from Serious Eats):


For the Pu-erh infused Bourbon:

8 ounces Four Roses bourbon

2 tbs loose-leaf Rishi Ginger Pu-erh tea

For the Ginger Pu-erh Old-Fashioned:

½ tsp sugar

3 dashes Angostura bitters

a few drops of water

2 ounces Pu-erh infused bourbon

lemon twist, for garnish (optional)


For the Pu-erh infused bourbon: Combine the tea
and bourbon and cover the jar. Let steep at room temperature for 12 hours or
more, shaking every 24 hours if you chose to be that adventurous.  Strain the tea leaves and discard. Store infused
bourbon in a sealed jar.

For the Ginger Pu-erh Old Fashioned: Put the
sugar in a glass and add the bitters. Add just enough water to saturate the
sugar and muddle the mixture until the sugar is dissolved (we use the end of a
wooden spoon handle for this). Add the bourbon and top with ice. Stir 10
seconds to chill and combine. Garnish with a lemon twist if desired. Enjoy!

To Darjeeling and back

Text and photos by Del Tamborini

Have you ever wondered about the journey tea leaves take to get to our cups?

the moment the leaves are plucked off the bush, until they reach us in
tidy little packages ready for consumption, many different steps have to
be followed exactly right to ensure the highest quality tea is

On a recent trip to Darjeeling, India’s Makaibari Tea
Estate, we were fortunate to be invited to experience the intricate and
fascinating tea production process.

Darjeeling tea is frequently
called the ‘Champagne of Tea’, for its refinement and delicate
complexity. Furthermore, like Champagne, Darjeeling is a ‘controlled
appellation’, meaning only tea produced in Darjeeling can legally bear
that region’s name.

Although some of the distinctiveness of
Darjeeling tea can be attributed to terroir – a particular combination
of soil, precipitation, sunlight, and other factors that contribute to
the unique character of a given tea – the chain of events starting from
the plucking of the leaf is equally important in creating the tea
masterpieces for which Darjeeling is renowned.  


proper pluck is essential for making a high-quality tea. While plucks
vary depending on the tea to be manufactured, the ‘classic’ pluck is two
leaves and one bud. (The workers pictured are selecting exactly this
pluck.) Plucking is labour-intensive and challenging. It must be done
with great speed but also a high level of discernment – care must be
taken to select leaves of the proper size and age, and to maintain the
integrity of the leaf during the plucking. In many tea countries, tea
plucking staffs are composed almost exclusively of women, as they
possess a degree of manual dexterity men often lack.

the pluck, the leaves are gathered in large bamboo baskets and returned
en masse to the estate’s central tea factory, where they undergo further

The next step is withering, done in long, shallow
troughs, to reduce the moisture content of the leaves and make them more


After the wither,
the remainder of the process varies according to the particular type of
tea being produced, but for black teas – the bulk of Darjeeling teas
produced – the next step is rolling. This step’s purpose to break the
cell walls of the leaf and enable the leaf to oxidize, and it is a
heavily mechanized process – the rolling machines we saw were nearing a
hundred years old, from the British colonial period!


the rolling is done, the oxidation process begins. The rolled leaves
are placed on shallow metal trays to allow maximum exposure of the
leaves to oxygen, and left there until they have oxidized to a
predetermined level. The leaves are now nearly finished!


oxidation, the leaves still retain a significant amount of moisture, so
to make sure they don’t become mouldy during their journey to us, they
are placed into enormous electric dryers. The dryers
reduce the leaves’ moisture content to 2-3% (any lower and the leaves
would become too brittle and break), at which point they’re removed and
immediately packaged in large paper sacks.


sacks are then sent to your favourite tea retailer, where they’re
broken down into smaller packages. Finally, the leaves make it to you
(hooray!) to fulfill their ultimate purpose – to provide you a delicious
cup of tea!

Healthy Homemade Tea Jello!


We made jell-o! Well I guess technically jelly but that doesn’t sound quite as exciting. It was surprisingly easy, delicious and is a really healthy snack. Here’s what we did:

Cold brew 1 litre of Strawberry Mint (see cold brewing instructions here)

Pour the strained tea into a saucepan with 2 tablespoons of gelatin (we used this one) and bring to a low simmer. Stir in 1-2 tbs honey and stir until completely combined.

Turn off the heat, let it cool and pour it back into a big jar, cake pan or little molds. Let it sit in the fridge overnight. Enjoy!