Thursday, February 18, 2016

Foodie Reads 2016: TEA-rrific Inspiration

In this short month - and a crazy one at that - I haven't had a chance to knock out very many books for the Foodie Reads 2016 Challenge. But this is the one that I have read, throughout several evenings this week, while sipping a cup of tea: Culinary Tea: More Than 150 Recipes Steeped in Tradition from Around the World by Cynthia Gold and Lise Stern.*

My boys and I are huge tea-lovers. Huge. We love Tea Tasting in Chinatown. My little one doesn't leave for his early algebra class without a stainless mug full of tea. And my husband just recently started brewing his own kombucha. More on that soon because it's amazing.

And, truth be told, cooking with tea isn't new to me. I've poached pears in Earl Grey, folded mint tea into shortbread, made Matcha Ice Cream, used Earl Grey in brownies, marbled eggs in black tea, and poached cod in green tea...just to name a few. Lapsang Souchong adds smokiness to dishes without using, say, bacon!

But Culinary Tea is over-the-top inspiring. It's an extraordinary resource for any one interested in tea, both in drinking and cooking with it. Like all cookbooks it includes recipes, obviously, but the skillful story-telling transports the reader to the countries from where the recipes came. The photographs are fantastic - love the images comparing unoxidized and lightly oxidized tea leaves and the styles of black and aged teas - and the recipes are easy to follow. Another benefit: most of the ingredients are not hard to source.

Using tea as an ingredient in a recipe affords the dish an alluring taste and, often, a picturesque presentation. I highly recommend Culinary Tea and think it would be a wonderful addition to the cookbook collection of any tea lover and, really, any cook. We loved this Green Tea-Poached Shrimp.

I'll be sharing a few recipes - think Steak au Poivre et Thé, Genmai Cha Vegetable Soup, and Tea-Rubbed Short Ribs - soon. Stay tuned.

*This blog currently has a partnership with in their affiliate program, which gives me a small percentage of sales if you buy a product through a link on my blog. It doesn't cost you anything more. If you are uncomfortable with this, feel free to go directly to and search for the item of your choice.

Here's what everyone else is reading this month: February 2016 Foodie Reads Challenge.


  1. When Stacy was in town here in Michigan I met her at her friend's tea shoppe which led me to making a savory dish using tea. It was delicious.

    1. How fun! I can't wait to dig into some of the recipes.

  2. I just requested this on interlibrary loan. I haven't cooked much with tea before with the exception of some chai cookies. I'm looking forward to learning more.


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