Culinary Tea -- A Cookbook Review

Recently I had the absolute pleasure to receive a review copy of "Culinary Tea: More Than 100 Recipes Steeped in Tradition from Around the World", by Cynthia Gold and Lise Stern. This book is a treasure. The authors have taken tea outside its comfort zone and proceeded to create a repertoire of meals that dazzle both the mind and body.

As many of you know, I am an herbalist by trade, so when I think of "tea" I tend to think of what are actually healing infusions made from plants. Tea, in its true sense, refers only to the plant camellia sinensis -- that which produces what is commonly known as white tea, black tea, or green tea. The recipes in this book are dazzling, and the story and history included along with the recipes made it a real pleasure to read. Whether you actually plan to cook with tea or not, I urge everyone to read this book -- it will broaden your understanding of cooking in general, and tea in particular. It's a beautifully designed volume which would enrich any coffee -- ahem, shall we say tea? -- table.

Have I become more of a tea enthusiast? Well, I most definitely do own more varieties of green and black teas now, and I have been experimenting quite a bit with matcha, or green tea powder, in my food. There is always a pitcher of tea brewing in my fridge for these hot summer days, and I have begun to experiment with tea/herb combinations more (chamomile will naturally sweeten the pot without adding calories, and mint cools the blood.)

"Culinary Tea" is 288 pages with full-color photos. It is available from Running Press for $22.95.

No comments: