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Teas Please

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Via Pinterest
 I'm having a big tea moment right now. Pretty much every day at work, I'll come in, cold and grumpy, and turn to my friendly water heater to brew me a cup of cozy tea. I can't drink coffee (yes, I'm the only person you know who is allergic) so tea is a great alternative. From mango green, to vanilla chai and good old Lady Grey, I'm tasting the gamut of teas -- one for every mood! I really try to introduce green tea into my body as often as possible because I know it is so so good for you.

I always feel a bit more international and chi-chi when I drink tea. I mean, basically wars were fought all for this little drink -- and the sugar to plop in it.
Once European explorers "discovered" Asia -- and its plethora of exotic products -- the Western aristocracy became hooked on tea. The value of tea leaves grew astronomically, and Chinese traders used tea in place of coin money. The British East India Company was created in order to profit from the tea trade, and subsequently aided in the colonization of large swaths of Asia. They also created huge-scale tea farms in India, setting the stage for our much loved Chai tea drink (which in actuality is about 1% tea and 99% sweetened milk.)
Tea fields in Laos from here.
 And, as colonization spread to the Caribbean and Latin America, a new cash crop joined the mix --- sugar. Hey, why not take two ridiculously expensive, exotic products and combine them into one drinkable symbol of wealth? Sounds good to me. So tea went from a warm drink to a hot one (to melt the sugar) and little handles were added to tea cups to preserve drinker's hands.
From East to West. Images from here and here

Stir in a couple hundred years and you have the British culture of tea drinking. Of course, then they bring their tea-drinkin' ways over to our American shores -- and it's still so valuable that throwing it off a ship causes quite a hullabaloo. Don't tax our tea, mofos.

For more info about the history of tea, check out this site
PS just as I was writing this, I got an invitation to try the Teas Me Cafe  in Indianapolis for Valentine's Day lunch. Can't wait!


  1. I have a set of Churchill China Brook Pink dishes, including teapot, very similar to that last picture. I am planning to use it for a Valentine's Day tea party with my children. We happen to be studying the Revolutionary War that week as well and you have inspired me to create a lesson about tea and it's affect on the American Revolution. I'm excited!

  2. I will have to have you try some of my grandmother's tea next time you're over! It's loose leaf, she makes it all with organic ingredients and most of it is home grown. I currently have Blueberry Vanilla Cream and I am grabbing Chocolate Pecan Toffee next time I go home. -- if you see any on here you want to try, let me know and I'll have grandma hook us up. :)

  3. Selah, how cool! I love tying food and history together. Definitely a great idea for your kids!

    Katie,a tea-maker in the family?? Lucky girl - I can't wait to try some!!

  4. look up davids teas on the internet
    i tried them when i was in whistler and am hooked
    just ordered there kinds of herbal tea - yeah, i don't do coffee or caffeine


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