A few months ago I happily reviewed two tea flavours from the Tea India range which had recently launched in the UK. And, just quietly, my period of drinking Vanilla Chai hasn’t stopped; I still love it.
The gorgeous award-winning chef Ravinder Bhogal is now working with Tea India, creating exclusive recipes using their wonderful premium tea blends and I’ve been given a sneak peek of some of them! Keep reading after the recipe to find out how you can get free tea from Tea India as well as all of Ravinder’s recipes.
I have to say that using tea for something other than a cuppa intrigues me. I once tried smoking steaks with lapsang souchong tea leaves (which already have a very strong smoky aroma); the steaks picked up very little extra flavour, but the house smelt like we’d had an indoor barbecue for several days!
Now I can say I’ve been successful in cooking with tea thanks to Ravinder’s recipes. Her spicy black tea cookies are a very interesting take on the humble oatmeal cookie. While I don’t think anyone would guess the ‘secret’ ingredient of black tea, its addition, together with some other more common spices, gives the cookies a lovely and very rich warm spice. I’m nibbling on one as I type 😉
When I made them I was in a hurry when shaping the logs (Nicholas woke up early from his nap) and so made them much wider than the recipe. This meant the log was more difficult to slice cleanly later (I had to squish some broken off pieces of dough back into the cookie shapes). Even so, I ended up with 15 cookies, cutting the slices about 2cm thick, so Ravinder must be cutting her cookies quite thickly. Maybe slice a couple of different thicknesses to see which you prefer, or just leave it up to your kids to decide if they’re helping you make them.
Ravinder suggests eating the cookies warm (who doesn’t like a cookie almost straight from the oven?); they’re just as moreish and yummy cold.
SPICY BLACK TEA COOKIES
Prep time: 12-14 mins
Cook time: 15-20 mins
Makes 12-15 biscuits
They will keep in an airtight container for up to four days
2 Tea India black tea bags (leaves only)
125g butter, softened
100g soft brown sugar
70g self-raising flour
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground ginger
1 1/2 tsp mixed spice
Preheat the oven to 180C (160C fan) and line two baking trays with baking paper.
In a large bowl, cream the butter and soft brown sugar.
Add the oats, flour, tea leaves and spices, and mix until well combined.
Roll the cookie dough into a log shape approximately 5cm in diameter. Wrap in cling film and chill for 5 minutes.
To bake, remove from the fridge, unwrap and slice into 12 even sized pieces. Place on the prepared trays.
Bake for 15-20 minutes or until the edges are just golden brown.
Allow to cool on the baking trays before serving warm.
Tea India has a Facebook promotion (until 3 June 2013, so be quick!), You & I and a Cup of Chai, where it’s giving you the chance to share a free selection of its finest Tea India blends with your friends and family. Find out more here.
Tea India will be releasing Ravinder’s recipes on their Facebook page over the next few months, including mouth-watering Cardamom Kisses using their Cardamon Chai tea. I’m lucky to be able to try these very soon, but you’re just going to have to keep checking back 😉
Disclosure: I was sent two boxes of tea to sample and cook with. My opinions are honest and my own.