Brewing Hints: Infuse for four minutes in water that is just off the boil
Leaf: Large leaf tea with vanilla pods and vanilla oil
Characteristics: An instant hit with our customers. A beautiful vanilla aroma which is complemented by its smooth and aromatic taste
Serving Suggestions: Serve without milk. Ideal after a sweet dessert or instead of a dessert for the more weight conscious!
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£2.57 – £46.90
This combination of vanilla and Keemun China Tea is divine! Since introducing it to our flavoured teas range it has fast become one of our most popular.
Vanilla comes from the vanilla orchid and in general from the Mexican species Vanilla Planifolia. Vanilla was introduced to Europe by Hernan Cortés in the 1520s Initially, the world’s vanilla came from Mexico and Central America and attempts to cultivate it anywhere else were in vain due to the relationship between vanilla and its pollinator the Melipona bee. The fruit on the flower which gives the flavouring requires pollination to grow. In the 1830s a Belgian botanist called Charles Morren invented a method of artificially pollinating vanilla but this was extremely complex and did not work reliably outside of a laboratory and so this never caught on. However, in the early 1840s a 12-year-old slave from the island of Réunion discovered that the plant could be hand pollinated and this allowed global cultivation of the plant.
The most popular species of vanilla is Mexican vanilla and which thrives today in Mexico, Central America, Madagascar and RÌ©union. This is also known as Bourbon vanilla which is the original name of Réunion island and is now also called Madagascar vanilla. Due to the difficulty of growing vanilla seed pods, vanilla is currently the second most expensive spice in the world after saffron. Happily, a little vanilla goes a long way and as a result vanilla is widely used as an ingredient in many recipes for food as well as perfumery and aromatherapy.
From a health point of view, vanilla extract is claimed to have high anti-oxidant content (just like tea) and anti-inflammation abilities.
The tea used as a base for this delightful flavoured tea is again a Keemun tea. The creamy sweetness of the vanilla and the gentle smoky astringency of the Keemun mix together perfectly to be either taken with savoury or sweet foods. It sits well with salads and coleslaw, particularly smoked salmon, as well as with crème brulee and treacle tart and custard. A delightful combination that is right at home in anyone’s tea collection.
Ingredients: Black tea, vanilla pods (5%), vanilla flavouring.