3 ways with… is a series exploring different ways of brewing and sipping our favourite drink. I’ll be picking out some of my favourite Cosy flavours and showing you a few different ways to enjoy them. Click here to see previous posts from the series.
Ah Rooibos, it’s a funny old tea. It’s the kind of tea you might find at the back of a weird aunt’s cupboard and you’re quite sure how to pronounce (that’s roy-bosh). If you haven’t given it a go before then I’m here to convert you and let you in on a little secret – Rooibos is delicious. Especially Cosy Rooibos, which we’ve paired with vanilla for a unique and creamy flavour.
Rooibos plants in the Cederberg Mountains
Rooibos, or ‘red bush’ as it translates from Afrikaans, originates from the Cederberg Mountains in its native South Africa. The needle-like plants are harvested and left to ferment and dry before being ground into a tea. The tea’s popularity grew after early Dutch settlers started drinking it as a cheap alternative to black tea, which was much less affordable than it is today. Although in the UK it has maintained its status as the indie band of the tea world, Rooibos has grown in popularity since those heady early days and has a loyal following, especially in South Africa where it makes up a whopping 40% of the hot drinks market. Drinkers have associated it with a number of health benefits, everything from allergies and headaches…to curing eczema and halting premature aging.
In previous ‘3 ways with…’ posts I’ve shared some pretty adventurous recipes. Cosy Rooibos with Vanilla is such a unique flavour that it really doesn’t need much embellishment. If you’re new to Rooibos then consider this your initiation. Here we are folks, my top 3 ways to drink Cosy Rooibos with Vanilla…
With lots of milk and sugar
This is the traditional way, brewed much like we brew good old English Breakfast. Sometimes only a pot will do and this is one of them. Simply pop in a teabag or two, steep with boiling water and leave to brew for 3-5 minutes. Serve with lashings of milk and sugar to taste. A wonderfully comforting and sweet take on an old favourite – be sure to crack this one out at your next tea party.
The lovely thing about Cosy Rooibos is that the added vanilla means it’s a perfect drink all by itself. Black tea can be bitter when drunk without milk. Rooibos contains around 50% less of the bitter tannins you find in teas like English Breakfast and Earl Grey, so if you’re avoiding dairy this is a delicious alternative to your regular brew. Simply pour boiling water over a teabag in your favourite mug and you’re just a couple of minutes’ brewing time away from perfection.
Cold, with lemon and honey
If you’re a fan of iced green tea, then think of this as its darker, more grown up cousin. This is a deliciously refreshing treat for any time of the day, but is especially good in the evening as an alternative to an alcoholic tipple. Brew your tea as usual and once you’ve removed the teabag, stir in a teaspoon of honey and leave until completely cool. You can even make ahead of time and keep it in the fridge until you’re ready to drink it. Come teatime, simply add a slice of lemon and you’re good to go. Just promise me you’ll take a second to admire that beautiful red hue before you take a sip.
So what do you think readers, are you converted? Let us know in the comments or over on Twitter!