Saturday, April 20, 2013

Lavender Earl Grey Iced Lattes

I've had a pretty pleasant weekend and I truly hope you're doing similarly. Yesterday, Chris and I took a trip out to Burnet and Marble Falls. Why? Well, we were looking for bluebonnets, a wildflower that grows here in Central Texas. A popular thing to do is take photos in them. We have done this a few times before and I wanted to do it again. This past weekend was the Burnet Bluebonnet Festival, and this was our first stop in our hunt.

My hopes were a tad squashed after driving the 45 minutes to the festival without seeing a large patch of bluebonnets. Never fret, I thought, as there were bound to be a field of them someplace. So Chris, Rusty, and I stopped at the festival before venturing onward in our search.

An aerial show took place in the sky over the crowds of people listening to live music and shopping through stalls of handmade items, carnival foods, amusement rides, and crafts. I had also wanted to pick up a few items with bluebonnets adorning them, but failed to find something I felt I needed. What can I say? I'm trying to live a more simplified (junk free) life. We spent approximately an hour there before getting back in the car and moving on.

I was a little disheartened getting back in the car, but Chris and I looked on the Internet for a wildflower route and drove to Marble Falls in search of more flowers. We found tiny patches along the way, but nowhere to pull off and frolic and take pictures. Dejected, we set a course for home, which actually sent us on a very windy back road, through lots of patches of bluebonnets. So we posed. And here we are.

We had a nice, relaxing evening, and ended up going to a movie this afternoon. After grocery shopping and having a late lunch, I decided to go into the kitchen and whip up something refreshing with another one of my springtime favorites; lavender.

I decided earlier this month to devote the majority of my blog posts for April to the subject of tea. I do, after all, just love the stuff, and I would very much like to encourage others to be tea-drinkers. Iced tea is one of my go-to summertime drinks so I figured it would be a great place to start. This recipe combines an old standard, Earl Grey tea, with floral lavender and mellow cream for a really refreshing combination. Let me know what you think.

2 cups water
3 Earl Grey tea bags
1 teaspoon culinary lavender
2 tablespoons agave nectar
1 cup ice
1/2 cup soy based cream

In a medium sized saucepan, bring the 2 cups of water to a boil. Remove from heat, then add the lavender and tea bags. Let steep for five minutes.

In a decanter or pitcher, add the 1 cup of ice and soy cream. Set aside until steeping has finished (you can certainly do this in the refrigerator).

After steeping is finished, remove the tea bags. Give 'em a good squeeze to ensure a stronger flavor. Discard. Then, strain the tea base into a liquid measuring cup with a nice spout on it. This will help you pour the mixture into your decanter more easily. Add the agave nectar and stir until dissolved.

Pour the tea mix into your decanter with the iced soy based cream. Swish to mix. Serve immediately over ice or allow to thoroughly cool before serving.

Makes 2-4 servings.

Note: If entertaining, this recipe can easily be doubled!

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