The Tea Detective
Uncovering and Exploring the Facts About Tea
Cooking With Tea
Tea is not only immensely versatile as a beverage, but can be used in many
different ways when cooking.  Cooking with tea is fun and easy, especially
when you start to imagine all the different   ways in which it can be used -
from adding flavor to stock, sauces, dips, and marinades, to adding a touch
of color and flavor to desserts and baked goods.
Springtime in China means it is
time to buy and enjoy new
spring teas for drinking
and relegate what is left of last years supply for
cooking.

Tea is a great ingredient to add to when making
soup.  Just as you would use fruits and vegetables
when cooking, tea can be used in recipes to add a
unique flavor to soup stock.  In place of water add
brewed tea for a subtle flavor and healthy addition.

Tea is rich in powerful antioxidants as well as vita-
mins A, B, E, and K, and a whole host of healthy
minerals, including copper, fluoride, zinc, magnes-
ium, phosphorous, and potassium.  It is perfect for
building broths and vegetable soup (or a big pot of
vegetable chicken or vegetable beef soup), during
those cold winter months, helping to give your   
immune system a nice boost (and heading off both cold and flu viruses), along with adding a
nice subtle flavor.

Add a couple teaspoons of
oolong or green tea to the water when
boiling rice, for a nice added flavor.  You can even use the brewed
tea leaves from your teapot.  Just chop finely and add as you
would greens to sauces and gravy, rice and noodle dishes,
casseroles, and
stir fry.

Use
black or oolong teas to add a nice flavor boost to meat marin-
ades for chicken, beef, or pork. Or use green or
oolong teas to
create flavorful, yet mild infusions for poaching, steaming, or braising fish and seafood.

You can even use tea in desserts and baking.  
Japanese Matcha powder adds a bright green
color and delicate flavor when added to cakes, cookies, ice cream, or even breakfast smoothies.

Just use your imagination and you'll come up with plenty of versatile new ways of cooking with
tea.

Be sure to stop by The Tea Detective from time to time as we add new pages with tips and
ideas for cooking with tea, along with new recipes for you to try.

If you already cook with tea and would like to share recipes, tips, or information with our
readers, or if you have a question you'd like to ask, stop by our
contact and questions page.  
We'd love to hear from you :-)

To help get you started cooking with tea, here is a simple recipe for Spanish Rice (with shrimp or
crab) that is a favorite of mine.  
Enjoy.

Spanish Rice with Crab or Shrimp  (Makes approximately 4 servings)

Ingredients
3/4 cup long grain rice
1 small onion
2 small cloves garlic
2 tblsp canola oil
1 1/4 cups water
1 - 8 ounce can stewed tomatoes
2 tsps loose green tea
1/4 tsp salt
hot pepper sauce (optional)
1/2 cup frozen peas
1/2 lb. crab meat or cooked medium shrimp

Cut up onion and garlic
In skillet cook rice, onion, garlic, and tea in canola oil over medium to low heat, stirring
occasionally until rice is golden brown.  Remove from heat.  Add water, undrained tomatoes,
salt, and a couple dashes of hot pepper sauce (optional).

Cover and simmer about 15 - 20 minutes or until most of the liquid is absorbed.  Stir in 1/2 cup
frozen peas and 1/2 lbs of crab OR shrimp and cook for 5 minutes more, or until heated through.
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