Although cooking with tea has gained popularity in recent years, driven by the antioxidant properties and sensory richness of the infusion, the gastronomic uses of camellia sinensis (the tea plant) date back to time immemorial. In the mid-thirteenth century, the Mongol Empire requested millions of kilos of tea from China annually, which were exchanged for horses; In addition to evaluating its digestive qualities, the Mongols consumed the infused strands of Pu-erh as a day-to-day vegetable. Yes, sautéing tender greens garnished with the moist sprouts of a traditional white tea, for example, is a treat reserved for true connoisseurs of the subject.
“What can you cook?” Literally everything from mid-range pure white, green, black teas and oolongs to European-cut scented blends. Take notes! Marinades for meats, fillings for roast poultry and sautéed fresh or dehydrated fruits can be enriched with camellia-infused buds and leaves; when dry, the strands are capable of imparting aroma and flavor to salty pastries, pastries and pastries. The next time you decide to bake homemade cookies, add a dash of the Earl Gray of your choice to the batter; the result, as you will see, is fascinating.
During the kneading and softening process, the chocolate can also be mixed with dried camellia strands to adopt all kinds of sensory profiles: fruity, spicy, smoky, vegetable, earthy … camellia strands help to enhance the flavor of the bars of chocolate, chocolates and truffles.
Let us now point to matcha, the most frequent example in contemporary culinary creation. Made from buds and leaves to make high-quality green teas, such as gyokuro or some varieties of sencha, ground to a fine, very shiny and bitter powder, matcha has become an essential of sweet creations. from all over the planet. Thanks to its powdery texture, this pure green tea is perfect for dissolving into doughs, sauces, sweet creams and all kinds of desserts.
Be careful, we have already said that not all matcha are the same. Before adding tea to a brew, it is important to verify that it is a culinary grade variety; Unlike specimens intended for ceremonial use, culinary matcha are designed to express particular aromas and flavors when subjected to a cooking method.
How to use it? Start by infusing the tea by whisking it gently in hot water at 70-75 ° C to remove any lumps; Matcha is very delicate, so a liquid medium at a higher temperature could seriously damage it. Once ready, the infusion can be freely incorporated into the recipe. Remember that, due to its concentration of aromas and flavors, this pure green tea should always be used in small proportions.
Your task, dear reader, is to incorporate strands of tea into your Christmas kitchen. Don’t forget to tell us how it went.