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December 22, 2014

Chai Tea Scones

Filed under: Tea in Arizona — Kwingert @ 10:01 am




These delicious scones are truly a breakfast treat fit for the holidays!  The warming chai spices combine well with the not-too-sweet flavor of the scones. Just add some clotted cream or a little maple sugar and you have a scrumptious start Christmas morning.

What you will need :

1/1/4 cups buttermilk

1 tbsp. Souvia Masala Chai

1 1/2 cups all purpose flour, 1/2 cup white whole wheat flour

3 tbsp. light brow sugar, 1/4 tsp. fine sea salt

2tsp.  baking powder, 5tbsp.  chilled, unsalted butter cut into 1/2 inch cubes

1 tbsp. granulated sugar

Place the tea leaves and buttermilk in a small saucepan. Heat over medium heat until just beginning to boil. Remove from the heat and let steep about 5-10 minutes while starting to prepare the scones. Do not strain.

Preheat oven to 400F, line a baking sheet with parchment paper or spray with vegetable cooking spray.

In a large mixing bowl, combine both flours, brown sugar, baking powder and salt. Mix well. Add the butter and mix with an electric mixer on medium-high speed until texture looks like cornmeal, with small pea-size bits of butter here and there. Pour the buttermilk-tea mixture into a blender, blend and add the mixture to the butter flour mixture. Measure out 2/3  cup of the remaining buttermilk and add it to the  bowl. Reserve any remaining liquid. Mix on low speed just until the dough starts to come together. Divide the dough into 2 disks and place on a lightly floured surface. Pat each disk into  a circle about 6 inches in diameter. Cut each circle  into 6 wedges and transfer to the prepared baking sheet, placing them about 1-2 inches apart. Lightly brush the  surface of each scone with the reserved buttermilk and sprinkle with  granulated sugar.

Bake  at 400F for 14-16 minutes, until firm. They scones should be pale gold on top and darker gold on the bottom. Transfer them to a cooling rack for a few minutes. Best served warm!

To save time, you can prepare the dough ahead of time and freeze it…

Merry Christmas!



December 19, 2014

Chado – The Way of Tea

Filed under: Tea in Arizona — Kwingert @ 10:10 am


Holidays are filled with many wonderful ceremonies and rituals, some unique to an individual or a family, others unique to a particular culture.

What would Thanksgiving be without the turkey, Christmas without a tree, or Hanukkah without a menorah?

Just like these traditions are kept alive and passed on from generation to generation, tea has a long history as well; and in many countries
it makes up an important part of the culture. Asian tea ceremonies, for example, emphasize the use of all five senses conveying the message that the experience of taking tea is meant to be a journey rather than a destination.

In China,
where tea was first discovered about 5000 years ago, it became so popular that traditions surrounding the preparation developed and special teapots and cups were created to drink tea. The most well known ceremony is the “Gong Fu” ceremony. Gong Fu means skill derived through practice and experience. Using special tea pots and tiny cups, this ceremony focuses on the quality of the tea itself and only the best is offered to an honored guest.


The Japanese tea ceremony, or chanoyu, is an aesthetic ritual featuring the serving and drinking of matcha, a powdered tea. This very
detailed ceremony was developed under the influence of Zen Buddhism and has its focus on the appreciation of simplicity, beauty and harmony – to which tea is merely the vehicle.


The most well-known tea tradition in the West, however, is the British afternoon tea. It has its origin in the 19th century when the Duchess of Bedford found the time between lunch and dinner much too long and so began to invite friends over for an “extra meal” in the late
afternoon. This meal consisted of small sandwiches which were accompanied by a cup of tea, whereby the social aspect played a much larger role than the tea itself.

While the preparation and serving of tea may vary by culture, the essence, or meaning behind each ceremony is the same. Chado, the way of tea, is about appreciating the simple things in life, about taking time to focus on the presence and about spending time with friends.

We hope you take time during this busy holiday season and create your own tea ceremony – enjoy a cup of Souvia tea alone in reflection,
or in the company of friends and  loved ones.

We wish you, our wonderful customers, a joyous and relaxing holiday season!

Olivia, Rene and the Souvia Team


December 16, 2014

Tea Trivia…..

Filed under: Tea in Arizona — Kwingert @ 10:10 am

boston tea party


What happened on this day in 1773???

You are right -the BOSTON TEA PARTY!

But did you know that the 342 chests of tea that were dumped into the ocean contained several different  types of Chinese tea.

Two thirds of the tea was BOHEA (Boo-hee), a murky black tea with a smoky, generally very unpleasant flavor. The other 25 chests of black tea were Congou (Kong Fu) and Souchong. About 20 percent of the teas were green, primarily Singlo, a tea that the British East India Company had not been able to sell because it perished so quickly. There was also some Hyson in the mix as well.

source: Tea Magazine


December 12, 2014

Rosemary Almonds

Filed under: Tea in Arizona — Kwingert @ 10:00 am



These will make a great addition to your holiday snack and appetizer selection.

Did you know that rosemary represents love, friendship, loyalty and remembrance? What perfect sentiments for this holiday season.

For this recipe you will need:

4 cups blanched  whole almonds

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

2 tbsp. finely chopped fresh rosemary and 1tsp salt

Preheat oven to 365F. Line a cookie sheet with foil and lightly coat it with cooking spray. In a bowl, combine the olive oil, salt and nuts. Mix to coat the almonds evenly, then spreading them on the baking sheet . Bake for 20 minutes, but check and stir regularly to make sure the almonds don’t burn.

Some aged Gouda and a nice glass of red wine will make the perfect complement!




December 8, 2014

Tea Sales in the U.S. are on the rise….

Filed under: Tea in Arizona — Kwingert @ 10:09 am


hWhile tea is the world’s second most consumed beverage next to water, it had been somewhat neglected here in the U.S. in the past. According to the American Botanical Council’s first Tea Market Report, this seems to be changing.

The numbers published in this report show that sales of loose bagged, concentrated and herbal tea in the United States increased by 5.9% in 2013. The growing demand for tea here in this country is being driven by three primary factors:

  • health and wellness trends
  • positive media coverage
  • evolving retail landscape.

Also notable are the top five herbs sold in 2013. They are Chamomile (Matricaria recutita), Senna (Senna alexandrina), Ginger (Zingiber officinale), Echinacea, (Echinacea spp.), and Dandelion, (Taraxacum officinale)

Find out more about tea’s increasing popularity on ABC’s website!

December 5, 2014

Healthy Maca-roons!

Filed under: Tea in Arizona — Kwingert @ 10:00 am


These days, our to do lists seem to be getting longer. There is grocery shopping for the holidays, house cleaning for the guests and of course getting a start on Christmas shopping. If all that does not leave you out of breath and more tired than usual, then I don’t know…..

For that extra energy boost turn to Mother Nature. There are many natural remedies that can help you keep that swing in your step without draining your physical resources.

Maca Root, for example,  has become quite popular among athletes to enhance performance and stamina. Also called Peruvian ginseng, it  is rich in vitamin B vitamins, C, and E. It provides plenty of calcium, zinc, iron, magnesium, phosphorous and amino acids. It is typically sold as a powder and can be mixed with your cereal, smoothie and other foods.

You can also sneak it into these delicious “maca-roons”

Ingredients:  14 oz sweetened shredded coconut

14 oz sweetened condensed milk

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

2 extra large egg whites at room temperature

3-4 tbsp powdered maca root , pinch of sea salt

Pre-heat oven to 325 degrees F. Combine the coconut, condensed milk, Maca powder and vanilla in a large bowl. Whip the egg whites and salt on high speed in the bowl of an electric mixer until they make medium-firm peaks. Carefully fold the egg whites into the coconut mixture.

Drop a filled teaspoon of batter onto sheet pans lined with parchment paper. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, until golden brown.

Cool and serve!

Oh….and while they may be healthy……they are not calorie-free! (but you can always wash them down with a cup of green tea for good measure)